Task 3: Project Complete

It feels awesome to finally submit this piece of work that I have grown particularly fond of over the last couple of weeks. This topic – Australian politics and young people – is something that I am both passionate about and interested to know the thoughts of my fellow peers. In addition, this is probably the first project I’ve done at university where ethics have been a huge influence on the outcome of the report – especially critical judgement, flexibility and curiosity.

In the beginning, my research started with finding sources and journal articles that related to my topic – what people have been saying, what researchers have found… but up until week 4, the notion of cross-checking major findings didn’t really cross my mind. As most consumers of any media, you generally assume that is factually accurate. Unless it is the Daily Mail. NEVER ever read an article from them and believe that it has any truth to it. Resnik (2015) discusses how important it is for researchers to learn how to interpret and assess another person’s work and make decisions based of those – often that is making the decision to further research the original findings to determine how credible they really are.

Being flexible in any research that you undertake can be a massive determinant in whether it ends up being successful. There will always be boundaries, or little hiccups in the road that seem to make the project that much harder. It is all about accepting that this will happen and adapting – being able to adapt to different situations is what makes a good researcher. According to Wet (2010), possible harm that could come to the project includes unfulfilled expectations, deception, unexpected representations and different interpretations of the same message.

Curiosity – that is where this whole project begins. Being curious enough to research the topic in the first place and endeavour to find out what everyone else thinks. At the end of the day, we all know that not everyone has similar values and beliefs. It is curiosity that makes us want to find out more and motivates human behaviour in general (Loewenstein 1994). As I’ve discussed in past blog posts about BCM212, curiosity is exactly what made me want to use Australian politics as a topic point, and whether my peers felt the same as me.

Throughout this project, it is evident that respecting your participants, as well as the time and effort they have put into your work, is vital in not only them respecting you as a person but leaves them more willing to help in the future. For both my surveys and interview questions, I made sure that I informed them of their rights when it comes to consenting to their information being put into my work; and also made sure they knew that they were appreciated and that I valued the time they gave me.

Therefore, I learned that maintaining ethical standards is vital for both the integrity of your work and often for your own piece of mind – as well as the importance of supporting your fellow researchers. Having faith in their work and giving assistance to others so they can complete it is an important part of researching. Being competitive or even going as far as to sabotage someone else’s work for your benefit will not make anyone feel better – not only does it undermine you but it undermines your own project.

Overall, I’m glad that I have finally completed the project – but I am also so proud of what I have done. I found it extremely difficult to self-direct initially, but once the idea was developed in my mind I was dedicated wholeheartedly. I discussed in my report (which I hope to share the findings of on my blog soon) that I truly wish I put my effort in the report early on and gave myself more time to provide the best report possible. However, I am truly proud of my work and how I have used the lectures and research to produce what I have.

_______________________________________________________________________________

References:
Resnik, D 2015, ‘What is ethics and why is it important?’, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, viewed 2 June 2017,
<https://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/resources/bioethics/whatis/&gt;

De Wet, K 2010, ‘The importance of ethical appraisal in social science research: reviewing a faculty of humanities’ research ethics committee’, Journal of Academic Ethics, vol. 8, pp. 301-314

Loewenstein, G 1994, ‘The psychology of curiosity: a review and reinterpretation’, Psychological Bullentin, vol. 116, no. 1, pp. 75-98

Task 3: better known as HOLY MOLY THAT THING IS DUE SOON?!?!

I wish I could say that an assignment’s due date just popped out of nowhere. 

I can’t lie to you, dear readers. I’ve known about this one for many, many weeks and knowing that fact is really not making it much easier.

If you’ve checked out my BCM212 tab, you’ll know that I am currently undertaking a project about Australian politics and young people. It has been a bit of an interesting topic to research – finding out the varying opinions across Australian media and of course, my peers in BCM212 and my friends. A lot of the time when we are passionate about a subject or at least vaguely interested, quality research is rarely undertaken. A lot of time we get opinions from others or we find information that we deem is true – and sometimes it really isn’t.

It has been difficult over the last couple of weeks to allocate time to really smash this one out with other assignments due and just my Netflix obligations (I know Mum; I KNOW you’re proud). A task this ‘big’ (even though it is indeed quite small) is often daunting as it is completely self-directed – I can barely remember to put peanut butter on my toast before I eat it let alone start a brand spankin’ new project by myself and get it going.

I assure you, treasured scholar, that I will give a final reflection in the next coming weeks* and will also give a general overview of my findings just to put that educational icing on top of the intelligence cake. You’re welcome.

 

*It’s literally part of the assessment. I have to do it.
BUT I am doing it for you, my reader. Just remember that.

 

P.S You’ll be surprised to learn that the woman in my feature image is actually not me. Just as surprisingly, I can’t actually read. The more things you know.

image credit:
<https://www.brainscape.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/stressed-student_1.jpg&gt;

I’m scared of commitment (to 24 month phone plans)

I’ve always been a bit worried when it comes to commitment. I don’t mean like committing to a partner or anything – (oh hey T, you’re reading this? Love you xoxo) – I mean like entering into a 24 month phone plan because you accidentally dropped (smashed) your precious (shit) phone (brick) and you needed a new one.

I feel like I’ve never had enough money to really commit to massive 24 month things that solely rely on my ability not to lose or break something. It’s kinda scary when the salesperson gives you a pen (I mean it’s electronic but it still counts) and makes you sign your life away to something that you probably don’t even understand, let alone want.

And lets be honest, I’m always afraid that once I sign up, something 100% better will come along like 2 and a half months later (seriously T I promise we all good xo)

It’s weird how I am not worried about commiting to relationships but I am about jumping into realitively lower risk things. I’ve come to realize that for me,  it is having to sign – if I had to sign something when I started a relationship with T and it had all these terms and conditions I would be pretty hesitant (and probably thinking I was walking into 50 Shades of Grey thing and no one needs that)… unless it had something about daily, 20 minute foot massages. You ain’t never seen me pick up a pen so fast (Hi T, it’s crazy you’re still here and you are reading all this information about me that’s so interest… wait, you want to give me a foot massage later? Oh babe, you just know me.)

More dribble on a Wednesday

Over the years, I’ve come to really understand why having family is so important. Having people that are forced to love you has been quite a handy thing for me but also is pretty comforting. Being able to be 100% you and doing dumb things that come up at Christmas lunch, going to Grandmas house and raiding her pantry while she makes you a cuppa, and just being able to walk up and hug someone just ’cause are honestly some of the most quietly beautiful things we have in this world.

Not many of my readers (and by readers I mean spam robots) (but if you are a real, genuine human being than OH HI BABE HOW ARE YOU!? how has life been omg I know everything is happening! Crazyyyy) will know that I have had a pretty turbulent time when it comes to some aspects of my family.

It has always been a difficult concept for me to understand that odd situations in my life can’t just fit into a neat little box. This, of course, makes me want to fit it in more. And like when you’ve ordered too much McDonald’s, trying to fit it in your stomach even though it just ain’t sitting right usually just makes you miserable and kinda shitty.

I’ve realised over the past 12 months that I’ve put so much time and effort into trying to fit all my problems into a semi-controlled pile of stuff that I’m not really noticing what I’m trying to put in there. Trust me a lot of it is unhealthy and unnecessary, and like my ratty old shirt from 5 years ago – it should have been thrown all out.

But like with the last 2 chicken nuggets from a 12 pack – you keep on keepin’ on. Right?!*

*Except don’t smother your problems in sweet and sour sauce. Or do, I’m not one to judge. Let me know if it works.

Welcome to Anxioustown: population – wait what me?!? omg seriously what do I do!#$#$@>?!

Being an anxious person is never ideal. You’re always thinking about the worst possible outcome, about how that person is going to get in their car and be attacked by THE SERIAL KILLER THAT WAS RELEASED FROM JAIL YESTERDAY and then they are going to be in hospital and how you are going to have to tell their family, and how you are going to cry on their deathbed feeling helpless because you knew this was gonna happen but you didn’t stop it!!!!!!
Or something like that.

I feel like a lot of people misunderstand and think you are just a total idiot for going to the extreme end of the ‘Things that can go wrong’ spectrum. It is not a crazy thing – for me, it is a preparation thing.
I feel that with situations where I have no control, and dangerous situations mind you, it is a defensive mechanism so, in the absolutely insane chance that it actually happened, I could protect myself. Like arming myself with just my little ol’ thoughts.

When you are with someone that is the complete opposite of anxious, it can make things extremely difficult. It looks like you are trying to start something, or make a big deal out of nothing – but it really is something unavoidable. Things that may seem pretty average in risk automatically is turned into a situation of amazingly serious and dangerous proportions.
My thoughts take me hostage and bombard my mind – it’s like 10 Things I Hate About You where all these people turned up for an insane house party at Bogey Lowenstein’s (Bogey = me) that he didn’t know was happening. They rush in the door, smash things in the process, making your pleas for them to leave basically pointless. You stand there absolutely helpless, all the while you have no idea how to handle any of it.
You give up, try to pretend like it is all good and end up making yourself sick with worry until the situation is over.

Or at least, until the next situation begins. (Oh and honey you can bet your sweet life on it).

 

Spoiler: it wasn’t just Nigel with the brie.

 

3 words to describe yourself in 2015: eighteen, naive, moving

Back in 2015, making the decision to move away didn’t seem like a really big deal. I knew what it meant, but at the end of the day, it didn’t seem like a crazy idea. People moved away all the time and like someone once told me, ‘Just because I’m moving away doesn’t mean things have to change.” Stupidly, like then, I believed them.

The first day of moving to the Gong was uneventful. I packed up my car, got all my shit sorted, said ‘Smell ya later’ to my Mum and step-dad (they were gonna meet me down there with some of the bulky stuff), made sure I had 1 billion red p plates on my car and set off for the about 4 hour journey to my new home.
Arriving at I-House was nerve racking, but nothing too dramatic. Signed in, got a tour, started setting up my room. My family was already there, we had dinner together, I slept for the first night in my own little bare abode.

Before Mum left, she helped me decorate my new room. She hung up the How I Met Your Mother poster while I posted some photos of some friendly faces from back home. I added some lantern lights, my Mr Bean bobble-head, my figure of Zurg. During all this, I don’t think it was until I was facing saying bye to my mum, my step-dad, my sisters and my grandma that I really realised what was going on. They would continue on with their lives, one down, and I would start my brand spankin’ new one.

My real first night I cried myself to sleep. I didn’t know anyone, they didn’t know me. I didn’t know how to get from A to B, I was completely lost, completely doubting what I had moved for. Some friends from back home messaged me asking how it was going, and of course, I lied – I sent “OMG everything is fab!!! This is amazing!!! Hanging out with a couple of new friends!” from beneath the safety of my snug new doona Mum bought me.

One night, during O-Week festivities, we had this ice-breaking event. I thought it was kinda silly and stupid but I knew I had to force myself out of my room to actually see real. human. people. And against all odds, it was a pretty good icebreaker. I met some amazing people straight up, went out to a local dive later that night and realised we had way more in common than I thought possible.

Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. How many times do you hear of a musician saying they were thhhiiiissss close to not going to a gig or an open-mic night and a talent scout happened to be there and they finally got discovered? And at the end of the day, how many times do you really want to say ‘That could have happened to me but I didn’t go?’ NADA.
That was exactly how I felt about moving. I was a bit naive, let’s be honest, but I knew that if I didn’t take the opportunity I would be forever cursing myself.

And in all honesty, it has been the best and worst 2 and a bit years of my life. I’ve struggled with being myself and being vulnerable. I’ve struggled with having to form brand new friendships all over again and rebuild trust I really never had to question when I was back home.

But I wouldn’t have met some of the most fabulous, daring, laid-back, hilarious and down-to-earth people. None of the memories I cherish would even be in my imagination, in my headspace. I wouldn’t be living with 4 of the loveliest gals and I would not have crossed paths with my gorgeous T.

So this is to you, my new loves.
For completely going above and beyond my hopes and expectations.
You all know who you are.

TNSAKCBIDBJ just to name a few. xxx

Project Research 2: The Tale of the Looming Deadline

For my BCM212 project, I am researching Australian politics and the interest young people invest in it. After getting the ok from my tutor, I started delving a little deeper into the topic. As I’ve said in previous BCM blog posts, young people and Australian politics is something that I am considerably passionate about. I think that if you are going to undertake something like this, you have to pick something that you are going to want to do and make sure a deadline isn’t the only thing to keep you going.

Over the last couple of weeks, I have been writing and releasing survey questions while also formulating questions for an informal interview with a couple of people – some who is interested in politics and some who aren’t. It isn’t going to be anything too elaborate – just an expansion on the survey questions with a bit of context behind it.

Another thing that has become a major part of my project is formulating a risk monitoring strategy. It basically involves determining what risks I have encountered and what I am I doing to combat them – while also continuing to monitor them so it will not happen again. Major ones that have begun to affect this project are time management and planning, communicating with all you guys!! and of course, the ever-dreaded bias.

I thank everyone who has answered my survey and taken the time to get involved in my project. I plan on communicating a lot more with everyone about the contents of my project and eventually, the result.

Stay tuned to find out more or tweet me @lozrissa if you have any questions or want to contribute in any way. I’m forever open to ideas, and would forever grateful if you did!

Image credit: http://ericasuter.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/bk

 

Negative Nancy

“I would apply for the internship, but I won’t get it.”

“If I put my hand up, it’s not going to be the right answer.”

“Everyone else knows what to do but me.”


Being negative about yourself and your decisions is one of the easiest things to do, but the most detrimental.  Why is it so easy to downgrade your accomplishments and ignore how far you’ve come? Why is it so hard to admit that you handled that situation well, or you look good today, or that you worked so hard and you deserve that 1st place ribbon?

I have always jumped straight to the negative ending, the worst scenario imaginable that if something does go my way I’m often taken aback. I never prepared myself for the good stuff. I rarely give myself the credit I deserve.

I think a lot of it is that it might be coming across cocky if you admit that you got this. Some people do that, for sure – but I’ve realised there is a difference between being excited because you have accomplished so much and rubbing it in someone’s face that you have accomplished more than them. It is all about assessing and balancing.

It is so easy to be negative, but you never get the rewards you need. If you say you aren’t going to get something, you probably won’t. In the end, you can blame it on the fact you didn’t try as hard because you knew you wouldn’t or that stuff like this never goes in your favour.

Right now, I’m trying to coach myself to go to the positives first instead of the negatives. I might fail, but then again why would I? I must have thought I had the talent, or the smarts, or the initiative or at least something to even consider it an option in the first place. Why should I let someone beat me? Why would they? Instead of worrying about what everyone else is doing, or getting, or wanting I found the need to refocus. What am I doing? What am I getting out of it? What am I wanting from it?

I’ve come so far but I’ve got so far to go.

I’ve got so far to go BUT. HOLY. SHITE. I have come so bloody far.

Hometown Glory

Before I start, a big thanks to Adele for the top notch blog post title. I owe ya.


My hometown is kind of snuggled up in the middle of nowhere – but I guess everyone’s usually is. I’m  the first one to bag it out or make fun of how many bogans live there or that one weird lady you always see stealing cutlery in Kmart; but for the first time this year, I think I am truly starting to miss it.

Not the town at least, although I do miss driving around the streets knowing every shortcut, every good dress place and the best takeaway shop huddled in a side street smack bang in the middle of suburbia. Or going into your local Maccas(s) and knowing basically everyone working there.

I miss the people. I do miss most of the gang from high school, doing zero work (or maybe that was just me) and having the best time. Although once you move away, you quickly realise 1. who your gang really is; 2. whether you are going to put in any effort either; 3. even the ones living in the same town drift apart from each other too and 4. leaving high school is probably the best decision I never really made.

It is crazy to start again at the ripe ol’ age of 18. It probably is the best age to do it, and uni is probably the best reason and the best opportunity – but going from having most of your life ‘figured out’ in high school to realising that was not the case at all midway through first year is a crazy concept to get your head around.

You always drift away from the people you didn’t mean to, and sometimes you can even come closer to those you didn’t really know before. It is never the same in any year group but it always happens the same way and yet you can’t help but be shocked about it happening – although you always have that one person that you see graduation night, and then never see them or really hear from again.
And when you ask people about them, they say “Shit. I feel horrible. I forgot they even existed. Would you like some lemonade with that cup of goon?”.

 

 

Damn generic surveys!

As most of you know, I am currently completing a #BCM212 research project that involves asking basically any question in the history of the world. Which makes me cry every. damn. time a lecturer says it.

BECAUSE I HAVE NO QUESTIONS!

But luckily I found one in the back of my head somewhere, between the lyrics to Let’s Go To The Mall by Robin Sparkles and 21,879 digits after the decimal place to square root of pi.

Q: Are young people interested in Australian politics?

A: How the hell should I know? That’s why I am asking. Seriously. The nerve of some people.

All I ask of you, measly servants treasured readers is that you please fill out my generic survey that will take less time than it does to realise you have absolutely no money in your bank account (which is 5.2 seconds) (for me).

Check it out at this link here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YZ9CVVF

Or don’t. But know that I’m not angry, just disappointed.