coffee date #26 with muskanjot kaur
senior 🥺, future doc!, Bhangra queen, SKister, TCNJ Ambassador (woot woot 🥳), mother of coffee date #7, personal hype woman
me: mighty mango | muskan: green machine
location: brower student center, new jersey
Muskan Kaur is one of those few souls who has THE warmest personality ever. Very few people have the ability to make someone they just meet so valued and welcomed, and Muskan is one of them.
I knew Muskan existed going into college because coffee date #7 always spoke so fondly of her. However, I never thought that she would make it (so quickly) onto my list of life consultants.
Post-coffee date: I’m so overwhelmed with emotions – happy emotions ☺️. Muskan is literally an angel. So many times during the date, I felt the tears coming ya’ll (praying that you didn’t see my glistening eyes Muskan 🙈) because the things she said were so heartfelt, real, raw, and beautiful. I adore you Muskan Kaur.
- Our breath can be a powerful tool if we use it right.
For all of us anxious folks, whenever I hear someone say “live in the present moment,” I have no idea wtf that means. We all have a hundred different thoughts popping into our head at any given point in time, so how can we intentionally allow ourselves to feel and experience everything in the moment rather than focusing on what may or will happen?
Muskan believes the answer lies within our breath. People who teach meditation often preach about the importance of breath-work because it “helps synchronize body and mind, bringing us more into a mode of present-moment sensing. … The stillness and space of mindfulness of breathing allows us to move into recovery mode, as we take some time out from the frenetic pace of activity or worry that many of us live with.”
Muskan described that she now takes deep breaths every time she catches herself becoming more and more anxious. It brings her back to the moment that she’s living in: the here and the now.
Using our breath can also teach us how to live with a little less guilt. For example, whenever I have a boatload of work to do and still take the time to workout, I have momentary episodes of panic mid workout because I feel like I’m wasting too much time by prioritizing exercise over work. Muskan explained that she learned to “be present” in whatever atmosphere she’s in. When she’s at the gym, she’s at the gym. She’s not worrying about her job, her work, or her other priorities.
“If you’re there, you’re there.” – Muskan Kaur, 2022
It’s literally all in the breath. A little inhale and exhale can evidently go a long way.
- The “cure” to overwhelm
College can be an overwhelming shit-show even when your priorities are set right. How do we all so immaculately balance being academically driven, participate in several clubs, have the social battery to maintain friendships, provide ourselves with adequate nutrition, and possibly even make our own money by having a part-time job….and on and on and on!
Muskan Kaur is one of those impeccable humans who is an absolute queen and slays at SO MANY different things. With a plethora of responsibilities, comes extreme waves of overwhelm.
According to Muskan, the cure to overwhelm…..*drum roll please*…..is rest.
Our capitalist society makes us believe that we need to add “rest” onto our to-do lists because somehow taking care of ourselves is second to being “productive.” Obviously it is easier said than done (unfortunately), especially when we do feel like we’re getting our asses kicked. However, it’s pivotal to recognize when we just can’t keep going. We need to pause. And we can pause for however long we need to – a week? a month? a year? There’s no point in diving in the deep end if we, ourselves, are not emotionally in the right headspace.
Also, just a reminder that “rest” can look so different for everyone. My type of rest is binging Netflix with my little bro, working out, and being out in Nature. Muskan’s type of rest will be completely different from mine, and that’s okay 🙂
- The art of taking a compliment.
Receiving compliments is a super weird feeling. I (similar to Muskan back in the day) don’t know what to do with them. I, rather foolishly, believe that compliments can make one arrogant if they are internalized. According to Muskan, it’s only when we seek compliments for the sole purpose of validation that that arrogance may develop.
“Compliments should act as reminders, not validation.” – Muskan Kaur, 2022
Compliments can be uplifting as they can give us a little nudge of joy when we’re having a shitty day. They’re just reminders that emphasize what we already should know and believe about ourselves. A queen ya’ll.
- Confidence has many more layers – this was a magical epiphany!
“You look in the mirror, and you think of yourself in the lowest way possible. But when people look at you, it’s the complete opposite.” – Muskan Kaur, 2022
We often think of confidence as being able to live our own life without worrying about other people’s perceptions of us. But that’s just one-half of what it means to be “confident about yourself.” The other half, which simply blew my mind when Muskan talked about it, is being confident about our emotions. In other words, if we need to cry, then realizing that crying it out will, indeed, make us feel much better is confidence. Allowing ourselves to emote happiness and trusting that our mind and body know what they’re doing is also confidence.
“Human tendency is to be sad rather than being happy. But if I have to take that extra step to be happy, then I will take it.” – Muskan Kaur, 2022
- Just a lil’ friendly reminder to go to therapy because it has the ability to truly be life-changing 🙂
I feel like I haven’t dropped this little reminder in a while, so for anyone who needed a sign:
Here’s your sign to attend that therapy session and begin your journey of healing because we’re all worthy of it.
- College teaches us so much about friendship.
A big part of college is navigating through (sometimes) faulty friendships. College is often the first time that many of us have to live on our own and experience life for what it is without the protection of our parents and support system. We’re supposed to figure it out on our own.
We all want friends. Many of us want to be a part of everything that Hollywood glamorizes on-screen in those typical high school-college films. As a result, we may start with that group of 20 friends, who we naively assume are our ultimate life companions. As we grow more as individuals, that number begins to shrink and maybe by the time we’re nearing the end of our college years, we realize that of the 20, we’ll only have 2-3 of them at our ‘Wedding Party.’
“I don’t have to be a close friend to everyone, but I can be a good friend to everyone.” – Muskan Kaur, 2022
- You are the center point of the Universe.
Arrogance is assuming that the whole world revolves around you. However, “self-love” is realizing that your relationship with yourself is the greatest relationship of all time. And in order to form that relationship, we have to realize that:
“In your own world, the world does revolve around you.” – Muskan Kaur, 2022
Muskan explained that when we’re ready for bed every night, we’re essentially alone with our pillows and a blanket. Therefore, we must learn how to prioritize ourselves and blossom into whatever we envision ourselves becoming.