The thing about distance.

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I moved to London just about two weeks ago, since then something remarkable happened: the feeling of being thoughtful and questioning my purpose in life has gotten less. How can this be? Everyone – it makes no difference whether its a magazine, a blog or friends & family – always says living in big cities leads to mental health issues, loneliness and in extreme cases, self-destructive behaviour. Strangely though, in my cause the anonymity of city life allows me to distance myself from problems and fears, it will enable me to clear my mind.

You see, diving back into anonymous London life, where everyone is mostly focused on themselves rather than on their environment, allows me to find simplicity in life and work. Often, your best companion is your own mind, this ease brings you closer to your thoughts, away from all the noise. On the other hand, it also allows me to appreciate the importance of sharing emotions with an audience, based on my own temporally possibilities and my desire to share.

As such, you come to realise just how important distance can be throughout life;

Distance from failed friendships and love relationships – to understand and process your

Distance at work – starting with being more independent, standing your ground and forging more professional relationships.

Distance in terms of self-image – to make wiser, more rational decisions.

Distance plays an essential role in my life; it allows me to mute out the constant noise, to focus only on what matters, work, life, love, ambition – to escape the continual battle of self-ambition vs distraction.

If you can manage to find this balance, from being distant to being personally when desired or required, it will have a significant impact on your life. It will allow you to focus on yourself and create a stable base from which to socialise from, without getting lost in society’s noise. I guess it is also has a lot to do with the famous saying “everything in moderation”.

Most importantly, however, it’s a realisation and lifestyle that takes time and comes with experience. You have to make mistakes and ask yourself questions before you implement changes that will only result out of lessons.

With this said, let me leave you with my last thought. Our digital society often paints distance as a negative, something that illustrates failure – allow me to invite you and think differently. See distance and “offline” individualism as a strength, a chance to build yourself a strong mental foundation for approaching and dealing with our world’s noise in a more coherent, efficient and most importantly, less self-destructive, healthy manner.

 

Another life-changing chapter..

The British Politician Benjamin Disraeli once said

“London is a roost for every bird.”

When you’re asking me – there is nothing more to add. After many adventures and experiences in Germany, I am now ready to finally come back to the greatest love I’ve ever had. London. Don’t get me wrong – Frankfurt will always stay in my heart and be a vital part of my life and also San Josè was an unforgettable period. However, it is time to break down the tents and move on to the next chapter.

Being not “always” available on Social Media and other comparable tools has been an eye-opener in many ways: Instead of renouncing myself and walking the way of St. James, I just enjoyed a very thoughtful time offline. Thinking about yourself, where you’re coming from, what you achieved so far and what your goals are is essential – at least for me – to stay ahead of the game called life.

In only a couple of months time, I’ll start my Master’s in Media and Communications at LSE, which probably will be tough, but also very exciting. New people, new perspectives and a new lifestyle, tons of work and maybe also a semi-existent social life will define my life again? Who knows. Let’s see!

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After coming back from California and just staying for a couple of weeks in Frankfurt, it is time for my next adventure. This means writing the final exams before starting my official  “thesis term” in March.

Even though, the first week is almost over it feels like an eternity living in Mittweida, a small town close to Chemnitz. Don’t get me wrong: After applying for several universities and working parallel to college, it really helps to clear my mind again. Unfortunately, my chest cold doesn’t seem to go away, thats why I stayed in bed all weekend to get ready for Monday again. It sucks, not being able to do whatever you want.

Do you know the feeling, when reaching a certain limit? Physically or mentally?

After the seventh try in writing a personal statement for King’s College I realised that I couldn’t go any further. Not being able to strive for the best, because your academic English is not good enough to apply was very frustrating for me. I thought to myself: Really Rosa? This is it? After having lived in foreign countries for almost 1.5 years?

Luckily, my cousin did support me enormously concerning this, and, I could successfully finish it in the last couple of days. But what would have happened, if nobody helped me? How could I have possibly beaten the system?

Additionally, I still need to learn to treat my body right. Even though my brain wants to take the next step and continuously analyses situations, my physical condition is suffering. To be honest, I did not believe magazines, proclaiming and talking about a phenomenon like “burn-out syndrome” or being stressed out. However, karma is a bitch and lets me run straight up against the wall for me to understand the issue.

So yeah guidebooks might be correct about the importance of physical health to get the results you want to achieve. I hope at least you guys, the people who are reading my blog posts, realise how important it is to understand that both components – your mind and your body – need to be in harmony to outperform.

By the way, this is me taking a long walk with a student colleague of mine to strike a balance again and to structure my goals for the future.

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O F F I C E O U T F I T.

I know the last couple of posts were all about sharing experiences or travelling to cities.

However, today I thought about sharing my previous office outfit idea with you.
Gladly, my workplace allows me to be a bit funkier and more creative when it comes to choosing my Monday to Friday outfit. This one here was shot in San Josè by the way.

I could NEVER EVER work at a company, where I couldn’t express myself through clothing. It is therefore not very likely, you’ll find me in an institution where formal outfits are key. Ever… Hopefully. 😀

 

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Leather trousers        —  Orsay
B/W blouse                  —  Armani Jeans
Pink blazer                  —  Marc Cain (Secondhand)
Shoes                            —  H&M

But let’s focus on the crucial thing in this post:
Usually, I combine a colourful trouser with a well-shaped blouse. These combinations make you stand out from the crowd but still shows some office character.

Good ways to dress for success is to use:

  • concise colours (colour-blocking) + classic shapes (like a double-breasted blazer)
  • suits in great patterns (you don’t have to stand in front of your wardrobe every morning, thinking what to wear.)
  • go for all-black with outstanding shoes. (colours like red, silver, gold, or two-colour shoes will work nicely)

Here are some examples! Wanna see more looks?
Explore my Instagram profil (@rosaschdt)

 

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Dior and I: Paris in three days.

This month is an organisational disaster! After coming back from the Americas, applying for universities and buying presents for Christmas, there was almost no time to settle in Europe again.
However, I had one big December highlight. After I have heard a lot about the new Dior exhibition in Paris, my mum and I didn’t waste any more precious time and took the train to see what it was all about. 😉

Day one

After muddling through a lot of people, we took a journey through different decades of style. From the famous “New Look” designed by Christian himself to Galliano and current designer Maria Grazia Chiuri – every shade and colour of Dior was represented.

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It took us all in all 2.5 hours to go through all the different scenes and look at every damn detail.

DSC03005This jacket is one of my favourites. Why? With this piece, a woman’s compelling aura surrounds the one that wears it. It is like a uniform you put on to stand out of the crowd. Dangerous colour and material combined with a woman that knows what she wants. Brilliant!

Day two

After an exhausting first day, we went to Montmartre to take a glimpse at the famous church Sacré-Cœur. What a view!
Some of you may have seen it in my Instagram story already:

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… And Notre Dame at day and night.

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Day three

The last day was mostly all about shopping. This, of course, meant: Galleries Lafayette from top to bottom!
Before we paced through these doors, there were some other spots we needed to discover first..

The Opéra National de Paris for instance. Pictured here with the French and European flag on top.

DSC03123.JPGFurthermore, we discovered another famous place directly next to the opera house. The Cafe de la Paix – one of the most famous and well-known places in Paris, where famous writers such as Oscar Wilde and Ernest Hemingway stayed. (and me of course)

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After dawdling through every level of Galleries Lafayette, mum and I ended up on the rooftop of the building. The sun already started to set, resulting in beautiful pictures.

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All in all, it was a great trip into a city, from which I’ll probably never get tired of.

I guess Christmas can come!

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After everyone told me how AMAZING America is I strangely wasn’t as impressed as I should have been. Don’t get me wrong; my working life was brilliant, but to be quite frank I was bored stiff and irritated from my free time.

  • Bars and clubs closed at 2 am even in the big cities like LA or San Fransisco (?!).
  • Americans use melted cheese in cans and spray it on their food. Obviously it’s not real cheese…
  • Vegetables are bigger than my head. Only god knows why.
  • Nobody couldn’t care less about clothing. I know hoodies are the working dress code in Silicon Valley, but still – really? I had the feeling flip-flops were the only thing some people owned.
  • San Josè is one of the biggest cities in the US – but there is literally nothing going on. Or at least you would expect more from a city with more than one million inhabitants.

Apparently, California, in particular, was made for people, who are obsessed with adventures. Hiking, Bunjee Jumping, Sky Diving…. the list is long and never-ending. I thought to myself: Alright, it is not my thing, but I do understand why America is great for people who are into sports.

Of course, the countryside is beautiful, and Yosemite or Big Sur are breath-taking. However, I felt a lack of culture at that moment. Simultaneously, I knew I did something wrong:

I compared it with Europe.

Yep, that was a big mistake. Even though we all define the US and Europe as the western society, which self-evidently means we have the same values and attitudes still we are completely different. And after 1,5 months I also saw the great parts everybody was talking about.

After I set my mind free from these prejudices, I did understand the core principle of it.

It is all about freedom.

After three months of living in California, I never had the feeling of judgement. Nobody tried to put you in a category or stigmatised you because of some assumptions. This state literally screams: Go for it! Express yourself! Live your talents out and realise your ideas!

Perhaps this is the secret formula of Silicon Valley and Los Angeles. Do whatever (the fuck) you want. But do it with all your heart and passion.

After I realised this, I started to enjoy my time and did things, I never thought of doing. AND PEOPLE LOVED IT. Unbelievable.

San Josè was life-changing for me. I grew as a person and in a business sense. Being able to take a step back and be more reflective of actions and rather not doing being an overenthusiastic young professional, wanting to do everything as fast as possible is a major step for my development.

I can’t believe I say this, but I miss the US, and I miss California.

San Josè, it was my pleasure.

 

TOEFL – a pain in the ass.

Every foreigner needs to do it when they want to confirm their English proficiency, so do I to apply for university abroad. As you hear in the title – TOEFL is a pain in the ass.

Most of you saw my video on Instagram talking about my own little challenge. However, I was not quite honest with you. I tried the test once before at a horrible test center in San Jose and failed completely. I also prepared too much….

However, for those who didn’t hear about it, yet:

I did not prepare for it. ( At least not for this one).

I am a control freak in many manners, which means I usually over-prepare for everything just to “make sure”. (as you can hear from test 1..) Hopefully, a lot of you can feel me: one never wants to rely on talents and skills, because everything could go wrong and end up in a catastrophe.

I rather stick with my comfort zone and don’t face my fears.
But isn’t that what it is all about?
Getting everything out of life even though it means overcoming barriers? 

This is a thing I have reads about so often in many books or Tumblr quotes. Apparently, nobody cares about them because they are all over the place. Nevertheless, they have their reason for existence.

I finally decided to put it all out there. Perhaps, for some of you this will be too much, perhaps some people don’t even see a difference.

But I would kill myself if I didn’t try it all my life.. so stay tuned bitches. 

The TOEFL advice I give you is short and based on my own experience with the test. I realised, if you google for help concerning the TOEFL you’ll find everything in every detail, but no real personal experiences.

So here we go your ROSA advice, freshly delivered! 😉

Section 1 Reading

Before the multiple choice tasks appear, they’ll first show you the whole text of a specific academic topic.

Don’t read the whole text at once!

Just try to scan the first sentence of every chapter to get the bigger picture.

Look for keywords first!

They will re-appear in the text. This makes it way easier and faster to tick the right answer, instead of going through the whole chapter, reading every detail.

If you still have time to go over your results  – do so! Every right answer counts.

Section 2 Listening

I know it is hard, but concentrate on every detail.

They will ask you for the inconspicuous,  unimporant things.

Don’t get confused with straightforward questions!

No they aren’t as tricky as you think they are – try to follow your instincts.

Section 3 Speaking

This is the one I would practice on, even if you are fluent in English!

Preparation time in the test varies in between 15-30 seconds. Not a lot time to think about an intelligent answer or even think at all.

Practise, practise, practise!

Get into the vibe and develop a feeling of time.

Talk to someone about the given topics

The person can give important feedback regarding your structure, the content you put out or your pronunciation.

Section 4 Writing

Two texts, two different ways of writing. I’ll skip the first one, containing listening and summarising the points of an audio file, as a contrary opinion to the given text.

The more difficult one is the essay.

You’ll need to write about your opinion on a specific topic.

Decide for one point of view.

It’s nice you’ll inform yourself and constantly gain a lot of knowledge. This can lead to a well thought out answer. Nevertheless, it is also very likely the essay turns into an unstructured non-sense.
Your grammar is more important as well as how you put your arguments together to score the best results.

Adhere to the “statement – reason – example” law.

State why, feed it with detailed information and highlight it in a reasonable example. Doing this for at least two or three con’s or pro’s. This should turn it into a smooth ride.