Category Archives: My works

Here you will find short stories, flash fiction, weird almost-poetry and essay-like concoctions.

Not Sleeping Well? Just Convince Yourself!

Good Sleep

The power that human brain holds is just absolutely remarkable. The brain is that one part of our body that still remains mysterious, unlike all the others. We know how the kidneys work, how the heart pumps the blood through the vessels and we have even discovered how the healing process of the damaged tissues is happening.

But still, we have little idea about the purpose of dreaming, the origins of psychosomatic pain (remember the one doctor Watson had) and the power of self-suggestion. This brain capacity is the one that is our target this time. I can`t promise you that all the secrets will be revealed and you`ll know how to convince yourself or anybody else in pretty much everything. But I can tell you one interesting fact that will definitely help you to go on with your hectic student life. If you believe that you had a nice solid shut-eye (even though you`re actually a walking zombie who has forgotten the meaning of the word “sleep”) then it will have a wonderful effect on your brain.

Placebo Effect Works Even with Sleeping

Placebo Effect

You`ve probably heard about the placebo effect. It`s when your brain is convincing your other organs that something is happening when in reality it`s not. For example, you have a massive headache and you`re being told that this incredibly special pill will help with the pain. You take it and the miracle happens, the pain goes away and you`re feeling just great. But turns out, the pill was just a vitamin. Your brain was convinced it would work and it did work. It`s the same with the sleeping.

However, to be honest, I don`t really know how this is supposed to help you with your every night ZZZ-s but at least you`ll find out tons of interesting information. The study that was conducted to prove this point was nothing more than just a bunch of lies the scientists told the volunteers.

The researchers told the students who were participating in the experiment the processes their brain goes through while sleeping. Specifically, they were told that effectiveness of sleep depends on the length of the REM phase of sleeping and this phase varies from person to person. Oh, I almost forgot, before this whole lection, the students were asked to go through a special test to check their cognitive functions.

After that, the volunteers were hooked to the special little computers that were supposed to analyze the work of the body during the sleep and calculate the length of the REM phase. But there was this little secret kept from the students. Those little computers didn`t actually do anything. The next morning the scientists reported the made up results of the experiment. The specialists said to the first group of volunteers that their REM phase was pretty short. The second group was convinced that their phase was much longer than of an average person, therefore they had the more effective sleep.

It`s Not Like the Results Were That Surprising

Not Enough Sleep

Then both groups were asked to go through the cognitive test again. Guess what happened next? If I was making a video about this phenomenon I would definitely include a drum roll right here. Please, use your imagination, find the familiar sound of a drum roll in your head. So, as you might have already guessed based on the whole topic of the article, people who thought they had a nice solid effective shut-eye did perform significantly better on that test.

Yes, you can`t convince yourself of having enough of sleep because this would be just absurd. But you can trick someone else`s brain instead. Of course, I hope there will be nothing evil. In case your friend or a roommate has a tough day ahead and they didn`t get enough of sleep, convince them that they did get it and their day will be much more effective. For example, you can tell them that the new study has made a revolutionary discovery that for some people 3-4 hours of sleep per day is absolutely okay.

By the way, this is true but this is extremely rare and those people use many special techniques when it comes to sleeping. So, please, no experiments like this, alright?

 

A Bad Grade: No Luck with an Essay?

 Bad Grade

You are a pure sunshine which lights up the whole wide world. And there is this horrible professor who dared to disastrously underestimate you and give you a bad grade. You may feel pissed at your teacher, even at yourself but emotions simply won`t do here. One failure is okay because everything in this life is a lesson. The point is how are you going to turn this negative experience in your own favor?

In order to avoid the mistakes in the future, sure, you have to know what was the reason for such a low evaluation of your efforts. It`s one thing when you don`t give a rat`s tail about the assignment and get it done in half an hour. At that moment at least you don`t expect anything good to turn out of this. But there is this whole other thing when you were working hard, spending your days and nights on searching for interesting and useful information on the topic and all that you get is “C” tops. How does this system even work?

If you`ve ever been in a situation like this, trust me, I know your pain. People hate to lose, it`s simply in our nature. The worst part for a human is to get humiliated, to lose in front of many other fellow human beings. Psychologists say that it`s extremely important for the good mental health and cognitive functions of kids and teenagers not to tell their grade to the whole class. When you know you screwed up you may become sad but at least your social skills won`t get hurt. But when everybody knows you screwed up that`s already a high level of stress and anxiety.

The private policy works in most schools, colleges, and universities all over the globe. But if your teacher isn`t committed to this particular idea, then your class may address the administration because not following the rules of privacy is violation of human rights.

So you got a bad grade for your essay even though everything seemed so correct. Perhaps, the reason is among the typical mistakes or your failure was quite unique. Either way, we have to find out what to do next.

How Many Piles of Diamonds Do You Worth?

Pile of Diamonds

The first advice will be psychological and probably the most important one. Don`t let one bad essay let you down. I know that it`s hard not to lose the feeling of self-worth in the situations like this but depression is the last thing that you need right now. Besides, it`s just one assignment, what kind of depression are we even talking about?

I know people who would be touched by the bad results of the test pretty severely. So it does happen. Besides, it`s in our psychology to react that way. When you don`t meet the expectations that you`ve set for yourself it may affect your self-confidence. So all your skills and knowledge shouldn`t be defined by a single task.

Turn on Your Logic and Apply Math

Guy Calculating

Before you do anything stupid like rush in the professor`s office demanding the reason of your bad results, find out whether you got everything right. Did you do a really good job on the essay or you just think you did? Perhaps, your friend was trying even less than you but got a better grade? Of course, it will piss you off but it doesn`t mean that your lousy work was supposed to get a better evaluation.

Okay, let`s agree that you were trying really hard and you expected results to be much better because you made zero mistakes. Are you sure that a professor didn`t do any mistakes as well? He had to check all the dozens of works, so there is a chance that he had mixed up your last name with someone`s or he gave you not that grade he intended to.

Situations like this happen. If it was a test, for example, just calmly and politely ask your teacher to have a look at your work and count the points one more time. No man is infallible so there could be a mistake.

You Need to Get That Information

Taking into consideration that the privacy policy is rather widespread nowadays (thank goodness) in most universities it would be hard to find out the grades of your fellas. But to make sure everything is objective, you have to try and get that information out of them. Of course, it would be suspicious if you just walk around asking everybody about how they did on the assignment. So just ask your friends and if you all got the “C”, then perhaps there is something wrong with the system of evaluation.

Young professors tend to understate the actual results of students because they are demanding. Generally, it`s normal because those ambitious and energetic teachers are just eager to improve your skills and they can do it in a rather harsh way. Unfortunately, sometimes the professors aren`t being objective to the essays of the whole group. In that case, you should all together point out this fact to the administration. It`s just weird and suspicious that from the whole bunch of smart students nobody managed to please the high demands of a certain teacher.

You Didn`t Expect This Part, Did You?

Now comes some serious talk here, guys. Of course, everything stated above is absolutely worth trying but we haven`t pointed out another step in this game yet. Just move on and get prepared better for your next test or put even more effort into the writing an essay. The best possible option here is to address your professor and ask him/her for an advice.

Firstly, they would be pleased that you show so much interest towards their discipline and would probably remember you as a hard-working student. Secondly, they will actually help you to get better! I do believe that no professor would ever say “no” to a student when the one wants to improve his/her skills.

Studying Before 10 AM: The Worst Idea Ever

Sleepy Student

Here`s you setting an alarm clock to be in time for your tomorrow`s 9 a.m. class. But you know what? Stop it! Being a responsible adult who you undoubtedly are, you should know that it`s bad for your health to get involved in any kind of activities before 10 a.m. I wish university administration knew this.

They actually do. The professors of one university, in particular, know this for sure. They conducted a massive scientific research at Oxford and found out that people were not meant to be productive at that early ungodly hour. I knew that through all my life and it`s a shame nobody wanted to support this theory of mine. Thank goodness, the Oxford guys are here to prove it!

The Early Bird Gets the Worm… or Does It?

A Bird with a Worm

I wonder what the night owls are supposed to get in this case. Well, the division of human race for the early birds and night owls does exist. It`s been proven by multiple scientific institutions. This system helped a lot our ancestors during those dangerous and dark times in the past. The cavemen had a lot of enemies from the warring tribes and the hungry predators. So there were those people who would stay up the whole night and watch the group.

This phenomenon got transferred into the genes of modern people and now we have those who are better at working when it`s all dark outside. There is a theory that you can change your biorhythms and become a night owl or an early bird. This is partly true because you can develop a habit in 21 days so you can get used to waking up and going to bed early during that time.

However, there is this category of people which are called by scientists “the genetic night owls”. If they change their biorhythms, they would be less productive, would always feel tired and sleepy. If one of your parents is a hard-core night owl, there is a huge chance you`re one as well.

So, basically, mother nature has come up with a perfect plan how to keep everybody safe and productive in different parts of day and night. But what`s with the 10 a.m. results?

Don’t Move Until It’s 10 a.m.

Paul Kelley is a professor at Oxford University who was in charge of this ground-breaking discovery. He has published his research which was is based on the observing of biorhythms of men and women of different age, professions, and lifestyles. Turned out they were significantly more concentrated and focused on the work only after 10 a.m. This is the peak of humans` daily activity. There is another one at 4 p.m. but it`s usually smaller (unless you`re a night owl).

The good news is that some governments have taken this research into consideration and now are thinking about applying the new system of the working hours. Great Britain, however, is planning to start the working day even earlier – at 8 a.m. so the employees would have more time in the evening when all the activities are happening. Which variant would you prefer: 10 a.m. as a start for studying or working with all the energy and productivity or 8 a.m. as a start so you can have more hours of evening fun?

Essay on Stress and Ways of Tackling It: People Who Irritate You

Person is Irritated

It is true that sometimes stress is caused not by upsetting events at college or a quarrel with your parents. People around you may be the main reason why you feel that bad. Of course, everyone wants to reduce communication with them and live a full life. Nevertheless, it may be impossible if a person who irritates you is your group mate or even a professor. You have to meet these people every day at college and it seems like there is no way out.

However, in order to prevent stress and anxiety, you can use several tips on how to deal with someone annoying. There are several effective strategies for communicating with such people without negative emotions and stressful situations. They will help you to stay calm under any circumstances. It is especially important for sensitive teenagers who usually take things personally and cannot cope with difficulties of college life.

Analyze this issue to see why certain people are so irksome and make you feel stressed or even exhausted. Below there are some tips and hints for coping and even cooperating with them.

Ignore Them

People Communicating

Of course, the first and the easiest thing which we can advise you is to ignore bothersome people. It should be done in a correct and polite way. Do not hurt anyone just if you think he or she irritates you. Just try to cut down your communication and do not start talking to this person first. It may be very difficult if your teacher annoys you. But in such a case, you should try some other methods, because ignoring your pedagogues will lead to bad grades and serious conflicts.

Be Honest

If you feel that someone’s behavior makes you stressed or anxious, you should tell him or her about your emotions. Do not accumulate your negative attitudes inside you. It is vital to have a conversation with a person who irritates you or abuse you in order to make everything clear. Maybe, he or she does not even realize how hurting his or her words are. Be polite and patient as anger will lead to the similar reaction and your relationships will become worse.

Change Your Attitude

In some cases, it is essential to change your personal attitude to the irksome person. You may be too prejudged about them or understand their behavior wrongly. Just try to analyze this person’s actions and words. Maybe, they do not mean to hurt you at all and you simply make this up because of your attitude. It is important to find an approach to this person and try to comprehend their behavior. Things which are normal for someone may seem to be strange and weird for you.

Control Your Emotions

Students Arguing

Sometimes it is important to be able to calm down quickly and keep your emotions under control. Thus, you will easily prevent stress. You have to learn some specific techniques of self-control. Calm people rarely suffer from stress and anxiety, as they can hide their feelings and not become angry because of small things. How can you deal with your emotions?

  • First of all, you should take a pause. For example, if you want to abuse someone who irritates you it will better to wait a bit until your feelings calm down. After several minutes, you will be able to analyze the situation and find a better solution or compromise.
  • Secondly, you should understand why conflicts and quarrels happen in your life. When you know the reason, you can avoid such situations and save your nerves. For example, if you usually get into this trap while participating in a discussion, try to act calmer and do not take all things to heart. It may lead to stress.

To sum up, everyone should know the ways of dealing with irritating factors. It is very unpleasant when your good mood is ruined by someone pesky. Then you feel stressed and disturbed during the whole day and cannot work productively at college. That is why you should learn our tips and hints and keep them in mind while encountering a person with whom you usually have conflicts.

Do not suffer from stress anymore! There is always a solution even if you have to deal with this pain in the neck every day.

The Loneliest Planet

A lonely planet dances in its trail around the sun, its only companion a gray moon dragging along beside it. The other planets have many moons accompanying them – the little orbs seem to flood around them. Well, apart from those two planets, Mercury and Venus, but they’ve got enough in themselves and the sunrays.
“If only I were Jupiter,” the lonely planet thinks, “with a mass and gravitation larger than all the combined planets, and still so beautiful and light, consisting only of swirling gasses and winds. Or if I cannot be a Jupiter, let me be one of its moons.” Continue reading

The Trade of Punishment

”Why is this such a big deal?” Billy’s arms crossed over his green rain jacket and the material screeched with every movement. “It was a game and he wanted to play.”
The woman across the table had her hair in a high knot and there were glasses on her pointy nose. With her lips pursed she looked like she’d release a tongue, snatch him like a fly and eat him.
“Are you sure Geoffry wanted to play a game like that?”
Billy wiped his nose with a hand and dried it in his rain jacket. Screech. “He always wants to play with us. That’s all he ever says. ‘Can I play with you, can I play with you, I’m a really good pirate’. But you can’t be a pirate if you’re in a wheelchair!” Continue reading

An open letter to the Princess trapped by a Dragon – by Prince Charming

The letter you wrote me was sweet as cherry, and so was the mark of your lips, which particularly startled my heart. I’ll cherish it, always.
I hope one day to see your real lips, but that day will not be after I slay the dragon that has imprisoned you – because I will do no such thing.
Here’s an idea: slay the dragon yourself. There’s probably a bunch of swords laying around. Perhaps the dragon uses them as toothsticks. Use one of those. Continue reading

Transformations – Short Story

We saved our little world and of course that was great. People who would have been cold in their grave, or too torn apart for just one grave, went about their lives, complaining over late hours, incompetent staff and cold dinners.
We did a lot of good, the seven of us, but it felt wrong. Every day was a rosebush in my heart, each victim saved a beautiful flower and each word from my comrades a thorn. Inside my heart.
Thud, thud.
Pierce, pierce.
The worst kind of thing was like when a hishi spirit came towards me and I knew that now, now was when I’d die. Continue reading

Tranquilized

Once, she did not sleep.
Each hour was a task, a map to be laid out, every corner and stone turned.
There was never enough and still she seemed to have most time of us all.
One morning we found her sick and left her to do her own healing.
When she was well she told me she’d “never known sleep was so great”. She’d discovered its merit.
Now she was well I’d see her leaning on the counter with a distant look. She dreamt of sleep. She imagined not knowing what she knew and what a blessing it might be. She slept six, eight, ten hours.
It was wondrous.
There were no dreams and that was the best part. A short time of non existence, of oblivion. A small time of death.
She slept ten, eleven, twelve hours.
We told her she was getting lazy. She answered “merely inspired.”
Now she sleeps twenty hours.
Tomorrow I think we’ll realize we have not seen her for twenty four and we’ll wait for the day she wakes up to tell us how delightful her nap was before going back to drown in the covers.
And I envy her.

The Lost Hostess

My girlfriend has the best breasts. They’re firm, yet yielding, and no matter how much I try I can’t hold all of one in a hand.
She comes to my apartment pretty often and she walks around in her underpants, no top, and her breasts bounce a little when she gets excited or reaches for something. If she was in a zoo I’d go to that zoo and I’d sit on a bench and stare at her through the glass forever.
I love her body – and she’s nice, too. She does all these weird little things, like, I work on Sundays, so on Mondays she calls me up and tells me whether the show I missed the day before was good or not so I won’t get disappointed. She’ll watch those shows, even if she’s not psyched on them herself, just to know what’s up with me. Continue reading