Hi! My name is Meg Maxner, and this is my first year being a part of Happy Human Project! I am a Happy Human Rep and am going into my second year of Commerce at Dal.
The summer of 2020 I joined my hometown’s CrossFit gym, Northern Grit Fitness, in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia. Over the years of being a member at this gym I have developed new relationships with different people across my community that I would not have had the opportunity to meet if I had not joined this gym family.
I joined the local CrossFit gym, North Endurance, in Halifax last fall during my first semester of university. Coming from such an amazing CrossFit community at home, I thought my experience was unique to Northern Grit Fitness, but I was pleasantly surprised to discover that my new gym had the same environment as my one at home. Welcoming people and faces make CrossFit one of my favourite things.
Everyone goes to the gym to get better, and at CrossFit everyone wants everyone to get better. Whether that’s getting a new personal best on a lift, finally getting your first pull up, or running faster than you did the week before, every member at my gym is proud to see everyone succeed. The environment of a CrossFit gym is what keeps me coming back every week.
I have learned that CrossFit brings a range of people of all different ages and abilities, but with one common goal: to better themselves. Bettering their lifestyles, or their fitness, or to create new relationships throughout their community. CrossFit is a building block to community.
University can be tough for many individuals, living alone and managing school can easily cause burnout in many individuals. As my nursing program requires school in the summers, I first found it overwhelming and quickly began getting burnt out due to the heavy load of schoolwork and the consistency of my classes. Trying to get through feeling burnout without changing your routine is impossible and eventually I learned that I thought for my first article I would help some of you!
Firstly, recognizing burnout and monitoring your stress levels according to different tasks. More stressful tasks may require being broken up and completed in sections to reduce stress on the mind.
Support networks are essential when dealing with stress and burnout. Having a family member, roommate, friend, etc. To help work through your feelings and destress after a long day is very helpful.
Setting up a proper ratio of studying and rest is essential, I most commonly use the Pomodoro technique which entails 25 minutes of studying followed with a 5-minute break. Ensuring at-least 8 hours of sleep to rest the brain.
Most of all knowing when you need guidance and rest and acting in that urge is so important. We cannot do our best when we are not at our best. The highlight of this post is to make time for yourself and trust your body when it tells you it needs a break!
Hi! My name is Maggie Allen, and I am one of the Reps for the Happy Human Project. I am an Engineering Student finishing up my second year here at Dalhousie University. I have chosen the discipline of Environmental Engineering. I am happy to be bringing you along for a day in my life as a female engineering student.
Engineering is a degree that is a branch of science. Everything in our lives has an aspect of engineering to it. The science related to engineering involves design, building, machinery, and structures. More specifically, environmental engineering uses biology, chemistry, and soil science among other science-based ideas to develop solutions to environmental problems. At Dalhousie, Environmental Engineering is a branch of the Civil-Engineering Department which exposes students to the properties of structures and designing as well.
Today is a big and long day for environmental and civil engineering students. We are in the midst of our end of the year presentations and competition of our earth-quake proof building project. Come along with me on a fun filled day. First thing I do most mornings on a busy day is wake up at 6:00am and slowly roll out of bed and walk to the DalPlex. I try to get a good workout in before a long day to wake me up and start the day off right. I live on main campus, and all engineering classes are downtown on the Sexton Campus, so after the gym I go home and get ready for the day: pack my bag, eat breakfast, and hop on the bus. Today, I have my final design presentation and an interview for a summer job, so I get dressed business casual. By 8:00am I am on the bus to get to my 8:35am Applied Differential Equations Class. An easy way to describe this class is math without numbers. After class, I grab a coffee with some engineering friends and head to the IDEA building to do some work and preparations for my presentation later today. My next class, Mechanics of Materials, is at 11:35am. This class is all about learning how to ensure materials are safe for buildings and structures being built. After class, at 12:55pm, I meet up with peers and eat lunch and practice my presentation. My interview I have today is at 1:30pm so I head up to a quieter area and get ready to join the call. I’m super excited about this potential job and whether I will get the opportunity to join their team. My call is not super long, which is nice, so I don’t have to rush to my presentation at 2:30pm. I meet with my group outside the room and go over the presentation with them a few times and then we head in to finish up the project. Multiple groups must present today, which is super interesting to see all the designs of everyone’s building. The presentations end around 3:30pm and I am done all classes today, so I head back to the IDEA building and do some work, studying, and finish up some weekly tasks for Geology while I wait for my friend’s classes to be done. Around 4:30 pm, we walk home and quickly grab some supper before having to head back to campus for our design lab. Environmental and Civil students have a lab slot 6pm-8pm today to finish our buildings before the competition next week. I head back down to campus after supper and head to my favourite part of classes. The lab slots are always fun and interesting. The hands-on aspect of engineering is probably the most exciting. At 8:00pm I walk back home and grab a snack and head to my room to finish up some homework before calling it a day around 10:00pm. Typically, after a long day like today, I will go see what my roommates are up to which they usually are doing something fun and full of laughs. I usually try to get to bed early so when I wake up tomorrow, I can do it all again!
As much as engineering sounds busy, I can ensure you at the end of the day it can be very fun and lots of memories are made studying and spending time with peers! This wraps up my day. Thanks for coming along with me.
My name is Gabby Lowen-Favreau, and I am one of the Reps for Happy Human Project. I am a third-year student at Dalhousie University with a major in sociology and minor in entrepreneurship and innovation. Throughout my degree I have taken part in various Dalhousie clubs, but it has been challenging to locate programs that focused on the Halifax community outside of the student population. My experience as a student at Dalhousie has been changed by engaging beyond the Dalhousie community through the program RISE by Apathy Is Boring.
I am originally from Toronto, Ontario so moving to Halifax was a big step. It was really hard to leave my family and friends. My first semester at Dalhousie was the last normal one before COVID-19 started, which meant I was able to somewhat ground myself in the Dalhousie community through classes, friends and clubs. Once the pandemic hit, it led me to spend most of my time inside with my roommates in an isolation bubble. I found it hard to stay motivated to do anything beyond schoolwork, as many people did. After spending three semesters online, inside and isolated I wanted to do something that would reconnect me with the outside world. I was unmotivated and nervous to do this seeing as I’d spent so much time inside and with the same people. After a lot of procrastination and overthinking, I finally forced myself to apply to a variety of jobs and organizations that are community-based. After hearing back from a few of the organizations I decided to join Halifax RISE by Apathy is Boring.
RISE is a program that is both youth-run and youth-targeted. It is focused on community engagement and resilience in cities. RISE has programs across Canada and runs projects for six-month periods. It is a volunteer position that anyone between the ages of 18-30 years old can apply for and no specific experience is necessary. Each six-month period is called a cohort, and within that time period, the cohort is responsible for developing a community-based project. The cohort can choose to take their project in any direction as long as it is filling the needs of a selected demographic of youth in their area. The cohort meets every week for three hours and then usually has additional work to do outside of that. The cohorts run for six months and throughout that time they go through the phases of planning and developing their project.
My cohort is working on a project that is targeted towards local artists called Learning to Become (Works of Art). This project is going to be a half-day event that will have public speakers for the purpose of teaching artists practical skills, such as how to apply for grants, file taxes, and build a resume. We conducted focus groups and used surveys as a way to understand and learn about artists’ practical resource needs in Halifax. Once we understood the demand, we began planning our event and delegating tasks. One thing I have really enjoyed about the planning process has been my ability to learn new skills and push myself to do things I wouldn’t usually do. After so long in isolation, I was nervous to lead a focus group; I had never done it before, but I felt very supported by the rest of my cohort and we all worked together to create a script and make sure everyone felt comfortable. The next six weeks of our project will involve marketing, budgeting, administrating and community outreach. All of those skills we will be learning together as a cohort with the support of Apathy Is Boring.
Being a student can feel like a bubble; sometimes I go weeks without leaving the campus or student neighbourhood. It can start to feel like the Dalhousie community is the only part of Halifax when you are a student, and that can feel overwhelming. I really enjoy being able to leave my house and regular social circle every week to meet up with my cohort. It has helped me to connect with people who aren’t students and have chances to talk with them about their jobs, family and life. It has honestly become a highlight of my week; it makes me feel grounded and reminds me that there is still a lot more to Halifax and life than school. I know how hard it can be to join something no matter what it is. I still get overwhelmed sometimes, but it is so worth it.
Our event Learning To Become (Works Of Art) Is still in the development stages, but it should be happening the first week of June. You can follow our Instagram @aisbrise_hfx to stay updated and applications are open for Cohort 10 which you can find at this link: https://www.apathyisboring.com/joinrise.
My name is Mallory Chislett, I am the VP of Engagement at Happy Human Project. I am very happy to be sharing my story with you in hopes of bringing awareness to the disease that I was diagnosed with, suffered through, and continue to battle today. In December 2021, I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis after suffering the effects of the disease for over a year. While I felt relief in knowing that with a diagnosis comes treatment, I also knew this was just the beginning of a journey I would be dealing with the rest of my life, and with that came a lot of fear and uncertainty.
January was a great start to 2022, and Happy Human Project kept the momentum rolling right into February!
Our team kicked off the month by introducing the world to our newest addition, the Self Love Candle. Not only was this rose and vanilla soy wax candle amazing to smell, all the profits went directly to Adsum for Women and Children, a local women & children's shelter that provides immeasurable resources and support for our local community. Our candles were met with great support, and were sold out in just four days. Happy Human Project was proud to announce our donation of $200 to Adsum to help support their incredible work.
Next, in honour of Random Act of Kindness Day, we launched our next initiative, Random Act of Kindness Postcards! These postcards are available for purchase on our Shop, and can be sent to a recipient of your choice. You write the message, and we deliver it! All proceeds go towards Kids Help Phone, an organization that provides e-mental health support to many nationwide. Shop today!
Then, Happy Human Project held our first Happy Human Open House to discuss the future of Happy Human Project with our growing community. It was a pleasure for our team to meet with our general members and chat about what initiatives and events they would like to see created in the near future as we plan ahead.
To conclude the month, Happy Human Project collaborated with Jack.org to host a special mental health Jack Talk! This event was a great opportunity to share an introductory level of mental health knowledge, resources and aid at a time when this knowledge is needed most with COVID-19. Thank you, Jack.org, again for assisting with this incredible chat!
We look forward to sharing March's updates soon! Keep an eye out on social media for continued announcements.
Time to kick off 2022! Our team began the year with a heavy emphasis on mental health. As lockdowns began again across the country, our team advocated for ways to protect mental health and show our daily lives in our new "Day In The Life" videos that we share weekly on Wellness Wednesday! Check them out on Instagram.
Then, on Bell Let's Talk Day, we shared tips for helping end stigma surrounding mental health. In addition, Aidan Bonner (Founder & President), Mallory Chislett (Vice President) and Victoria Davis (Events & Initiatives Director) hosted an Instagram Live event with mental health advocate and author, Hailey Rodgers, for an incredible conversation surrounding mental health. You can watch the replay on our Instagram!
To close out the month we began our next initiative, Kindness Cards. Kindness Cards asked our community to send in messages of kindness to be handwritten on postcards and sent to seniors. This initiative was a smashing success and we can't wait to get the postcards in the hands of seniors in our communuity.
Thanks for a great start to the year! See you next month.
December, as always, is an extremely busy time for all students on campus, with classes and exams in full-swing! Happy Human Project announced an event in early December, to help students unwind! "Candles and Cookies: A Holiday Pop-Up Event" was held on December 3rd, and invited students to buy our new Self Care candle, with all profits going to Feed Nova Scotia, and decorate delicious cookies alongside refreshments, thanks to our community sponsors, Sobeys and Red Bull!
In just a few days, our candles completely sold out! We raised a total of $300 for Feed Nova Scotia, just in time for the holiday season, where food banks typically run dry. It was an incredibly successful event, and a great way to finish off the semester! Thank you to our incredible campus, community and supporters nationwide for your support. We cannot wait to show you what we have planned in 2022!
We began November, promoting the importance of Movember! We started early November promoting our Movie Night for Movember, that occurred on November 17th. Movie Night for Movember was a great success, where many students came to watch a screening of classic film 'Mean Girls', all while enjoying snacks and drinks, thanks to our community sponsors, Red Bull and Prime Student. In one night, we were able to raise over $215 to support Movember and their incredible causes.
To conclude November, we introduced our community to the new addition to our Shop; the 'Self Care Candle' in collaboration with Drift Studios. To read more about this exciting addition to our shop, read up on our upcoming December 2021 update!
Recently, Aidan Bonner, Founder and President of Happy Human Project, joined the See Me Show, hosted by Hailey Rodgers, to chat about the power of authentic community and how this idea correlates with the mission of Happy Human Project! Aidan and Hailey chatted about what authentic communities are, the kinds of communities you can get involved in, how to go about finding authentic people and communities, and much more! Be sure to check out See Me Show, and to listen to the entire episode, click the button below.