Balancing Work and Studying at University

Balancing Work and Studying at University

The following is a submission for StudySoup, on how students can work and be successful in their studies during college.

Having a part time job during college can be a great way to create some balance in one’s life. Working can help a student by not focusing on the stressors that come with higher education. Having friends outside the college bubble gives an outlet for sharing and interacting with people in the community. Getting some spending money might help you pay for those road trips and weekday food specials that you would otherwise pass up or have to ring home to ask for money. Employers for that new career will appreciate that you are taking initiative to start in the world of work and you can still be successful as a student.

While work has its benefits, it can also create a distraction for the real reason you are in school in the first place; which is to graduate. I was guilty of this myself during my undergrad years. I was working at a YMCA life-guarding and teaching swim lessons, and would work early in the mornings, then hustle over to class in a wet bathing suit. It was not a good look, and my buttoned-up suit and tie professor at the time let me know it. If you are doing anything from work study to internships, make sure you try to set a schedule around your classes; not the other way around. Keep your priorities in order. If you have long term projects due, try to arrange your work schedule in such a way that you have some free time to put the work together without cramming it in the night before. For those that are doing work in the service industry and might be up late, don’t schedule those 8:00 or 9:00am classes next semester if you can help it. You already know that you won’t be at your best to make those classes. Maybe StudySoup can find you the notes, but if they count attendance your grade is going to suffer.

Working can be a great supplement to learning at college and should not be feared or avoided. Make the job schedule work for you, and you can feel comfortable earning and learning.

Dr. Ethan Gregory

doctorg@drethangregory.com

www.drethangregory.com

@drethangregory

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Author of I’m Sorry, You are Not a Pick-Up Artist and I’m Sorry, You are Not a Disney Princess and You Matter Most! Season One

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The Grad is Always Greener on the Other Side

The Grad is Always Greener on the Other Side

The following is a write up for a careers website related to recent graduates finding jobs and decreasing ones envy when others get jobs before oneself. 

Keeping up with the Jones’s and the concept of the grass being greener are embedded in our human DNA from way back in our caveman days. Competing for resources and securing the survival of our offspring had us looking at what others have and trying to decide if it was worth taking for ourselves. When our peers and friends achieve a status that we have yet to obtain, it puts us at a competitive disadvantage (even if it is in a completely different field) in our own minds.

The first step in coming to terms with the success of others is to recognize how the world does not revolve around us. Having some kind words for our friends and classmates that found their first or next job keeps us in a positive mindset, and can reframe our competitiveness into motivation for finding our own.

If your peer happens to be in the same job field as yourself, they may be able to put in a good word for you with the HR at their new company. Often it is who you know that gets you in the door, use your relationship for good and not evil.

Expand your networking outside of your close peer groups if you cannot deal with the short-term success of the people around you. No one likes a hater and passive aggression or pessimistic people are never fun to be around. When we are most envious or jealous, we should be listening instead of talking. Ask to take a look at their resumes and see how they presented themselves. Maybe you can take some pointers or steal some formatting if you think they put theirs together well. If you see that your marketing is actually better than theirs, you can feel good that you have something going for you that they did not.

Persistence in your own search will eventually carry you through the envy and find you employed alongside your mates. Keeping an optimistic mindset in each interview and communication with potential employers will be paramount. Celebrate the success of those around you as signs that your turn is coming soon.

Dr. Ethan Gregory

doctorg@drethangregory.com

www.drethangregory.com

@drethangregory

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Author of I’m Sorry, You are Not a Pick-Up Artist and I’m Sorry, You are Not a Disney Princess

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Which Positions Help Him Last Longer?

Which Positions Help Him Last Longer?

I responded to a www.askmen.com reporter asking for tips on how a man can last longer in bed. You can read the published article here, and my response below.  

I have some insights to your questions about lasting longer during intercourse. I have been learning about (and practicing) some behaviors that prolong the physical aspects of penetration as well as increase the emotional intimacy during sex for about 15 years now.

My own research into the average length of an American sexual encounter is less than 10 minutes, not including foreplay. In Europe, it is reported about 16 minutes of intercourse length not including foreplay.  You can see a psych today article with that data here.

The penetration time varies of course, but there are some details that can help a man stay engaged mentally while lasting longer physically. One of the first books I read on the subject was How to Make Love All Night by Barbara Keesling. This was published in the 1990’s. She puts forth some data and techniques to use that men can use before sex with a partner that will strengthen the Kegel muscles and allow men to last longer and even have multiple orgasms. The techniques in the book do work to enhance the strength of orgasm, last longer during intercourse, and to have orgasm without ejaculation, but trust me when I say the effort to get to that level might not be worth the concentration and work it takes to get there.

Men are taught by bro science and media to disconnect from sex mentally to last longer. That does not have to be the case of course, but it shows just how disconnected the experiences can be between sex partners. If the reality of sex in America is that we are spending just a few minutes penetrating, men can cut themselves some slack when facing anxiety around how long they need to last. Positions that encourage intimacy, like face to face missionary where the man is controlling the speed of his insertions can prolong the encounter and create more intimacy. When a man has multiple sensations engaged, and he is not considering his pace of penetration, things can end sooner than later.

I encourage men and women I counsel to incorporate pauses in the penetration to connect and give the friction a break so the man can take his arousal down a notch. Sitting in a cobra (sex not yoga position) think old school spider style on the swing set. She is resting on his lap with her legs wrapped around his torso, and her legs crossed supporting her body weight. This can be a very intimate position, him resting inside her, eyes connected, and they can embrace as they wish.

Sex might begin with a penetration, but it doesn’t need to be an all out pump-fest until you finish. Using a rhythm to penetration can help men recognize their level of arousal, and the depth of penetration in any position. Try varying the shallow and deep thrusts and eventually it will be come second nature. The longer the thrust, the more friction. The more friction, the faster the finish. If she is on top, cowgirl allows her to hold him deeper inside her while she rubs her clitoris against him if she wishes. This can allow her to reach orgasm while he gets a bit of a break on the friction, helping him last longer. If a girl is doing an E-Honda sumo style cowgirl, he might want to transition to a pause, or pull his torso close to hers to limit the range of motion.

Many people enjoy doggystyle because of the ability of the man to thrust deeply, the penis hitting the front wall of the vagina, and the bonus of the scrotum grazing the clitoris. The man should recognize that every stroke doesn’t have to be speedy, and can enjoy the sensation of each millimeter of their partners. When things feel good we should resist the instincts to speed up, re-engage with our partners, and embrace the intimacy of the moment.

Before you get to the finish, he should ask his partner how she is doing, and if there is anything else she wants to accomplish. While he might worry about how long sex lasts, at a certain point it can become less about bragging rights and more about dryness and overkill. He only has to last as long as she needs him to last, so make sure he is putting his partner first.

Dr. Ethan Gregory

doctorg@drethangregory.com

www.drethangregory.com

@drethangregory

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Author of I’m Sorry, You are Not a Pick-Up Artist and I’m Sorry, You are Not a Disney Princess and You Matter Most! Season One

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Don't Marry Your Partner's Debt

Don't Marry Your Partner's Debt

Why is debt a deal breaker?

Committing to marry someone includes more than just building a future together. What assets and liabilities a person has will come along in to the relationship. When someone carries debt into their marriage, it puts an immediate strain on a new family. Marriage between two financially equal partners is hard enough without the burden of debt. Financial stress is one of the major triggers for conflict between partners and a risk factor for divorce. After a couple marries, there is a pressure and tendency to combine everything into one combined pot of resources. Having a partnership start with a handicap, one that would reflect on both partners if the marriage ends, is a decision that one should not take lightly. While it may be common to have certain kinds of debt in our modern consumer culture, dating a partner with debt is not the same as entering into a marriage where that burden becomes shared. If a partner dies, or if a debt goes unpaid, that responsibility can affect the partner.

Why might women be more hesitant then men?

Women are the traditional victims of marriage debt, as they have historically been the ones to leave the workplace during the relationship. Women that give up their source of income are still liable once finances are combined in the marriage. If the marriage ends, the wife will be without consistent income to pay down monthly payments, a lack of work experience when trying to re-enter the job market, and potentially a loss of their status in the dating economy to find another partner. When dating, finding a partner that believes in equal roles in and out of the house is not guaranteed. If a relationship progresses to the point of engagement and marriage, a partner might feel that debt is something that can be overcome and not worth leaving the investment in the partner just because of the financial situation. Men may be able to bounce back faster from a divorce than a woman that has made financial sacrifices during the marriage, and the wife may be stuck paying for debts she did not incur on her own as part of a divorce settlement.

What is the worst kind of debt to bring into a marriage?

The debts that might be more difficult to discharge in case a financial situation deteriorates to the point of bankruptcy are the worst. Any well educated partner may have the student loans to prove it, and those linked to federal loans are rarely going to be forgiven in bankruptcy. If you see yours or your partner’s debt as lingering and taking a toll on the financial and emotional health of your partner, you might be setting yourself up for failure by hitching your own liabilities to that wagon. Consumer credit can be charged off and will eventually come off a credit report, but homes and student loans do not go away easily. If you find yourself in a relationship with someone with consumer debt, you might want to take a second to understand their spending habits and psychological health when it comes to spending. Fiscal management should be something that a partner assesses along with family and physical health of their partner.

What can people do to prevent debt from ruining wedding plans?

As a counselor that preaches the six p’s (prior planning prevents piss poor performance) I advocate for singles to take time to address as many issues as possible before linking a life to another person. Couples that invest in their future together should outline a budget that allows for paying down debt as much as possible before dealing with the burden of wedding costs. Couples that choose to work on their spending habits together, paying down individual debts ahead of joining their assets into a joint account, or keeping separate accounts along with a joint account for shared expenses will be set up for success well into the future. The less debt a couple brings into a marriage the better their chance of staying together.

What are some tips to handle debt once married?

Once a couple finds themselves in a debt burdened marriage, it becomes easy for other issues to pile on top of the financial stress. If a couple decides to make addressing debt a priority, they can use both incomes to pay down their liabilities while saving a percentage to live. If both couples stay working and treat their debt as their child, they can really focus their combined energy to paying down debts to prepare for their family’s future. Combined incomes are a great way, but for those that are surviving on one income while trying to confront debts, hard choices must be made. Debt can be easy to get into and hard to get out of. Without commitment from both partners and how the money is spent between the couple, debt can linger on long after it should. Ensuring that the highest percentage of funds possible goes towards paying down debts, not increasing the debt load, and prioritizing smart spending can be the bond that strengthens a union. When one partner is not on board it will create stress and resentment that could lead to divorce and an even worse financial satiation for both partners. Teamwork is essential for any partnership; a marriage is no different.

What do you think? Tell your relationship & debt story in the comments.

This article was written for Rebecca Lake, at http://www.mybanktracker.com

Dr. Ethan Gregory

doctorg@drethangregory.com

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@drethangregory

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Author of I’m Sorry, You are Not a Pick-Up Artist and I’m Sorry, You are Not a Disney Princess and You Matter Most! Season One

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Can you lose weight without shrinking your breasts as well?

Can you lose weight without shrinking your breasts as well?

I was featured in the Skinnymom article related to exercise and breast size. Click the link to see the complete article.

There is quite a bit of bro-science, or in this case, bra-science related to chest size, breast composition, and lifestyle. As you mention, the actual breast/mammary tissue is fat and veins, with the skin around the breast having some fibers capable of stretching and constricting as needed, similar to other parts of our body. As a counselor and coach working with women getting started in new fitness routines, it is quite amazing to see a body transition with the effects of diet and exercise.

Hormones will play a role in the activation of expanding/firmness and restriction of breast tissue that most women will recognize during their normal cycles. Estrogen and testosterone balance in the body also effects the body and exercise can change that balance enough to effect breast size.

Think of any fat in our body as stored energy. When our diets include a high ratio of fats and sugars (that become fats) to protein, we might hold more fat storage in our body, and that would include our breast tissue. Once we start to exercise consistently, burning calories making withdrawals from our internal storage. The body does not really discriminate from which “fat cabinet” it pulls from. Breasts being full of fat, are going to be easy targets for the body to pull energy from as you keep up your workout routine. The body makes quick work of the muscle tissue energy when we are doing our interval trainings and spinning classes. Once the muscles go, the body starts burning that fat storage. If you choose exercise like traditional cardio and don’t stay at it too long, you can develop a toned body and won’t use up too much fat tissue. In order to maintain a lean figure (think 80’s aerobics videos) your diet needs to be balanced in such a way that your caloric intake (especially sugars and fats) is not too high so you don’t give your body more energy than it needs to be happy and healthy. You can probably stay close to the recommendations from the food pyramids and live an active lifestyle without losing too much breast tissue.

If you are going to start some metabolic engine revving high intensity interval training (Insanity and the like) and weight training that the body continues to burn calories after you finish your activities, you need to understand that the body will recognize quickly that it needs to be pulling calories from all the available sources to replenish the muscles and recover. You might need to put your boobs on a milk carton sooner than later if you don’t go against traditional bro-science. For those crossfitters and strong is the new sexy types, you need to keep fat as a part of your regular intake. I try to make sure about 25% of my overall food content comes from fat, and that I am eating regularly throughout the day (grazing) to keep my engine running at a high level, and I recommend the same for the women I work with.

Our diets will help the body regulate the energy it uses and we can ensure we have enough to stay healthy and improve our composition without completely sacrificing our breasts to have a tighter butt. When we introduce muscle growth to our bodies, it increases testosterone production naturally, which can also effect breast size for the smaller. Look at the professional female bodybuilders for evidence of that.

Starting P90x will not turn you into a horse, and lifting weights is an amazing way to lift up that butt and put some meat behind the breast tissue to frame your shoulders and torso. While it will take some effort, those that add consistent muscle to their frames will appear toned up, not bulked up. The fear that training with weights equals bloated shoulders and thighs is really a myth, unless you are training for some kind of powerlifting world record. If that’s the case, eat whatever you want and watch everything on your body grow.

If you are a young woman that is concerned about losing those brand new boobs you just grew in middle school and high school, try one of the excellent toning up programs that include a meal plan and schedule like those from beachbody.com. You can be gaining muscle without the use of heavy weights, getting great cardio workouts, and keeping a healthy diet that won’t strip you of the nutrients you need to stay balanced and healthy. When your boobs start to retreat, you can adjust your fat intake a bit to see how that effects your results. Try throwing a stick of butter in your morning coffee like some bodybuilding pros are doing now. You can find more information at bodybuilding.com. They have a store, workout plans for free, peer support, and more bro-science than you can want.

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Guy Wants To Score At The Wedding

Guy Wants To Score At The Wedding

I am attending a wedding this weekend and I am going as a single man. I was wondering if you have had any advice about wedding hook ups, since there is the stereotype, like the movie Wedding Crashers that weddings are the place to get lucky. What can I do to improve my chances of getting a girl to say “I do”?  

Dear Mr. Chicken or Fish,

I too have wondered about the validity of the wedding stereotype. I have been attending more and more weddings recently as my friends pair off to mate for life or death do they part. I have always gone single to the weddings and I have always gone home alone, but not from a lack of trying. See what one of my peers thinks about wedding hookup rules here. The last wedding I attended I traveled with another friend and was rooming with a young lady that shared her perspective on the myth with us. She stated that the stereotype of emotions are true; meaning that the girls that are at the wedding are thinking about their special day in the future and how much they want to be loved for life and they are all ooey gooey inside.

How that translates into a sexual appetite is different for every woman. Being at a wedding is a great place to do some experimenting. As a single man you are able to make your time be valuable or you can be a wallflower all night hugging the open bar.

The ceremony is a good place to observe what you have to work with. Sitting in the row just behind the family is a great place to see everyone that comes in and who they are there for. This will help the conversation later when you approach whoever with “So how do you know insert bride or groom”?

The reception is nothing more than a glorified petting zoo. Everyone will be grouped according to their breeds and availability to be stroked or petted. You will more than likely be at a table with other singles or people like yourself.

During the early part of the reception pay close attention to the people that spend their time at the bar. The women that are bellying up may be there to loosen up their moral garters, or they may be there to drown away their sorrow about being a bridesmaid and never the bride. If there is a single woman at your table, chances are that you may have a head start at a connection since you are both alone and about to get wasted. Within the first few minutes of dialogue with her make sure that you bring up a funny story with you and whoever invited you, and ask her why she decided to come alone, not “are you single?”

When the dancing begins you have two objectives. The first is to dance with the oldest or most physically handicapped of all the guests. People will see you doing your good deed and will be warmed by your compassion as well as impressed by your bravery. This will let any potential unknown suitor for your services come to the surface. The second is to ask the cutie downing the gin and sprites to dance. She may say no at first, but she will come around when her song comes on. Continue to work the room using your petting zoo map. The single girls flock together usually by a water source. When you approach, introduce yourself and wait until a break in the conversation to single out the one you want to pet. You can’t scare one of the animals or the group will attack.

Once you know who you are most interested in then find her married friend (they all have one). Ask her to dance; she will say yes since husbands don’t dance.  Now you are part of a sick foreplay game for married couples at weddings. During your dance you are going to ask about the status of your desirable. If she is single and she thinks you are cute the married girl will introduce you. If the answer is no, then she will tell you she has a boyfriend. Accept whatever she says as truth. If more than one slow song is played in a row, it is just about closing time. Round up the lush that rejected you earlier and tell her that you have waited long enough for her to come ask you to dance, and go cut a rug. Be charming and invite her for the after party back at the hotel bar. Yes means yes, no means no. You are half way home at that point either way. Don’t forget a condom, and don’t mention it. Best of luck, remember that you matter most!

http://www.drethangregory.com

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Advice 911: My Partner Is A Wimp

Advice 911: My Partner Is A Wimp

I have a really good boyfriend but he lacks masculinity and that turns me off so much about him. He just isn’t assertive. I could walk all over him. It is as if I am the man in the relationship when it comes to putting my foot down, making important decisions, and getting things done. We have been in public and guys will try to literally pull me away from him to get my number and he wouldn’t do anything! Can you give me some serious insight into how to make this work?

Dear Ms. Cavewoman,

I understand your desire to have a man that will “be a man”. You are not alone in your belief that the man should take care of things like fixing things around the house as well as be assertive in showing that he loves you and should protect you from these other men that find you desirable. Since we moved from the cave to the suburb, the traditional role of the man has been given a bit of a remix. We are no longer required to kill our food so that we can eat, and the man isn’t allowed to beat his woman for burning the chicken. 

Since the invention of the Playstation, men require less and less of a woman, and they have been neglecting the basic “man duties” in order to finish their game of Madden. As a woman, it is a blessing and a curse. The de-masculization of our culture has allowed you to seek work instead of being tied up with an apron and childcare duties but it has also created the sub-species of man called metrosexual and another variety called the good for nothing. A man back in the cave days might not have stuck around after sex with you to help raise the children or fix the air conditioner.

Your boyfriend has trust in your judgment and behaviors, and he hopes that you are strong enough in love and respect the relationship you have built together. By not confronting a man that is pulling you away to get your phone number he may be preventing a physical confrontation, or he may be testing you to see how you behave. The worst thing you can do is tell him to “man up” or that he is not a man, and you desire someone with more butch assertiveness.

When you do that, he will more than likely shut down and not respond in the way you want. What you need to do is watch him and praise his macho behavior when he has one. By giving him reinforcement of an action you desire you are letting him know you appreciate that and he will do more things that get a good response from you. Be patient with the man as he transitions from dud to stud.

It seems bad now, but look on the bright side; he isn’t beating you or forcing you to have sex with him.  He isn’t fighting people out of his insecurity in your relationship. There isn’t a lot of room in the relationship pants, so encourage him to put them on slowly. With the both of you sharing a leg, hope that they don’t split down the middle. Best of luck, remember that you matter most!

Dr. Ethan Gregory

http://www.drethangregory.com

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Author of I’m Sorry, You are Not a Pick-Up Artist and I’m Sorry, You are Not a Disney Princess

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How Does Higher Education Affect Job Performance?

How Does Higher Education Affect Job Performance?

Employers look for employees that will meet the demands of the job. Often those demands require specialized knowledge or a foundation of skills and concepts that come with a college degree or specialization. That isn’t to say that a person couldn’t self-study and have the same skill set, but the universities that have accredited programs by professional standard-setters will have an advantage.

Once on the job, a graduate will come with the fortitude and experience of working through a degree program, with soft skills that requires. Organization, motivation, ability to work in groups, a desire to learn and sacrifice are just some of the traits that a graduate may have over someone that was not able to match the persistence it takes to finish a degree.

The employer may seek workers that have proven their abilities in internships through their majors, and practical experience in a field would be another advantage to the graduate in remaining a valuable part of their work team.  

Dr. Ethan Gregory

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Arousal Differences For Men And Women

Arousal Differences For Men And Women

Vaso-congestion (bloodflow into the genitals) takes place in both men and women, the spongy tissues that help erect the penis and engorge the vagina happens almost immediately as stimulation commences. The vagina can start lubricating less than 30 seconds after thinking about the upcoming sensations and before sexual stimulation begins.

Of course, there is a vast difference from physical arousal and emotional readiness for sex. You may have heard of cases of rape where the body has a reaction to penetrative sex, and many men can recall moments during puberty where an ill-timed erection made things awkward.

The concept of sexual arousal beginning in the brain is true; hormones influence the physical reactions our bodies maintain. Once the bodies are physically prepared for sex, the friction and pleasurable sensations build in our genitals until arousal is at its peak, then orgasm occurs. In both men and women with strong muscles, orgasms do not have to end the sex act. Men that practice and strengthen their pubic muscles can orgasm without ejaculation. They can continue to engage in intercourse without a refractory period.

Men are capable of quick arousal and orgasm. Most women need clitoral stimulation to reach orgasm, and even with physical arousal, emotional investment in the sex act is an important factor (but not a dealbreaker) for the ability to orgasm. 

Dr. Ethan Gregory 

http://www.drethangregory.com

Written for Bustle.com

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