Q: “Dear Lara, I have this very annoying habit of getting really down on myself when it comes to getting bad grades, being put in awkward situations, and having issues with friends. I wouldn’t call it depression, just being too hard on myself. Any advice on how I can work on this habit or find a way to pick myself up again?”
A: Every person has a different way of cheering themselves up. For me, whenever I get sad or moody, I put on an episode of my favorite comedy and just sit and watch it until I feel all better. Other times, I will force myself to go out to the nearest coffee shop or grocery store just to walk around and get out. I don’t know why, but something about being around people I don’t know calms me. As far as working on the habit, my mother always told me that every situation, as awkward or embarrassing as it may be, is a learning experience. I remember being crushed after failing a huge exam, and my mom told me that, instead of crying about it, I should just take extra steps, so I wouldn’t have that same horrible feeling. I also was really hard on myself after a girl, who I did not particularly like because of her attitude, made a comment about my “awkward” and shy personality. I went home crying, and after wallowing for far too long, I just decided that if someone did not make me happy — and instead made me question myself — then I did not need that person in my life. All friends have their issues, but if a specific person is targeting you, then you shouldn’t waste your time with that person.