As finals approach, the stress and anxiety of an aspired performance follow close by,
please read this message carefully and understand this:
Your grades do not define you.
You will finish taking exams.
You will graduate.
You will finish this semester, no matter how easy or difficult it may have been.
Life will go on.
Your to-do list is important, but so are you.
Sometimes we don’t need the frilly words or inspiring photos to get by, we just need the truth. So, if you were looking for a sign: here it is.
As I have explored a more simplistic and minimalistic lifestyle, I have put more thought not only into what I allow into my mind and my physical space, but I have been more thoughtful about the quality of food I put into my body.
Veganism is a topic that floats around quite often in the minimalism community, and I have done a good deal of research myself on the issue and I think it is something worth checking out.
Before I go on, I must preface this post by saying that I am not a vegan, however, I try to eat a limited amount of meat and dairy as I have realized I feel more energized and “light” when I avoid those items. This post is also not to say that Taco Bell is “healthy” because of their easy-to-order vegan options, but the fact that I can combine a meat-less, dairy-less food option with affordability makes me well-rounded happy college kid.
If you’re like me and you are interested in taking care of your health and your bank account, I highly suggest checking out Taco Bell’s certified vegetarian menu. With a few tweaks, your cheap and quick meal can be free of animal products! (And pretty good too…)
What to order: Crunchwrap Supreme
What to tweak: Say no to sour cream or cheese and ask for beans instead of beef. You can add to this rice as well!
What to order: Tacos
What to tweak: Replace the beef with beans and remove the cheese. You can add guac and pico de gallo for extra flavor!
What to order: Bean Burrito or Black Bean Burrito
What to tweak: Ask for no cheese and add potatoes and rice!
What to order: Seven Layer Burrito
What to tweak: Order it with so sour cream and cheese, add potatoes and pico de gallo!
What to order: Taco Salad
What to tweak: Replace the beans with beef, ditch the sour cream and cheese, add potatoes, rice, guac and red sauce for a kick!
Hold the sour cream and cheese and give me aaaall of the deliciousness.
Our day-to-day lives are slammed with a multitude of things vying for our attention. It happens over time as we slowly integrate and adapt to trends, new forms of media, new relationships, more homework, etc.
Take a step back and analyze your mental and physical health. Are you tired? Overwhelmed? Over-stimulated? Do you feel like you are constantly searching for more things to bring you happiness? Do you feel like you never have enough time in the day to get all your tasks done? If you identified with any of these questions, consider taking the time to read through and apply some of these simple tools to your life to guide you into living a more intentional life!
Minimalism is based on the concept that we must get rid of the things that do not add value to our lives. What do you spend most of your time doing? Make a list of 3-6 things you love. If you aren’t doing those things every day, re-evaluate where you place your time.
Where you spend your time impacts the quality of your day. Do you rummage through piles of items to find a pair of shoes or that notebook for class? Have you noticed that your closet is stuffed, but you reach for only a handful of items each week? Give your space a detox as often as you notice things aren’t being used for any benefit, or if they do not spark joy.
Notifications on your phone for Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, email, text, and the list goes on and on, leave you with a false sense of urgency. Those things can wait. Turn them off.
In order to truly disconnect, we must first connect with ourselves. Taking the time to breathe and examine the state of your mental health is of utmost importance. Consciously breathe and take things slow when you start to feel overwhelmed. Nothing is more important than your well-being.
When we write, we are connected even more to the inner workings of our mind. Free-writing is simple yet helpful in clearing out the cobwebs and making space for only fruitful thoughts. Grab a pen and a piece of paper and let yourself loose.
We should all aspire to be life-long learners, but too much information at our fingertips dilutes what is actually meaningful to our lives. Pick a few favorite sources to subscribe to and say goodbye to the rest. You don’t need to know or have it all.
They weren’t kidding when they said Rome wasn’t built in a day, and that truly can apply to the standards you hold yourself to. Relax. You are a beautiful creation capable of so many incredible things. Be mindful of yourself, your space, your possessions, the value of your time and your well-being. But most of all, relax. You are one human in the world of billions. Let go of what isn’t making you a better person and strive every day to do your best.
You can do anything, but not everything. You were created to create, to be curious, to try new things, to work hard and see progress in yourself, your talents and your life. Sometimes the enemy of your mind says things like “be better,” “do more,” “that wasn’t good enough.” But you can’t listen to that.
Understand this: when you accept grace, you are loving yourself to the fullest extent.
Unsubscribe to perfection; befriend yourself.
Your room is your sanctuary. Especially at college. It is where homework is done without interruption, naps are taken often and alone time is always had…in a perfect world, right?
Over my college years, I’ve shared rooms with girls who became my closest friends, and I’ve also lived in tight quarters with people who I haven’t gotten along with 100% of the time. All my experiences have led me to today. It is my senior year of college and I have been given the (absolutely wonderful) chance to live in an alternative dorm on campus that gives me the opportunity to have my own room.
Despite whether I have had to live closely in tight spaces with a best friend, a complete stranger, or on my own, I have found that when my room is clean, cozy and cute, I am the most relaxed and productive. I have also found that the way my space is decorated and organized affects my mood. There is power in owning your space–and it is not as hard as you may think!
Here are some of my best tips on making your space yours, for even the smallest of college student budgets!
1. Keep it simple.
Neutral colors are calming and don’t overload your senses. When there is a lot going on, your brain is trying to focus on everything and then some. I recommend white bedding because of its ability to feel cool and clean. Plus, if you’re looking for a pop of color, white bedding goes with any kind of throw blanket pattern or throw pillow color.
Check out Target‘s collection of bedding for an affordable option!
2. Keep it affordable.
If you are in college, you are most likely paying a whole lot for your degree, but that doesn’t mean you have to skimp out on transforming your tiny room. It’s the smallest things that make your space the coziest.
Christmas lights aren’t just for the season, they’re for making your space sparkly and magical. Get a box for under $5 and string them along your window or wall for a pretty glow that will soften up your room for the semester.
3. Keep it “you!”
Even though university dorms are limiting with the rules against hanging things with nails or creating holes in the walls, there are alternative ways to make your home away from home more “you!”
Tapestries are very very trendy at the moment, but they serve a very beautiful purpose. They have the ability to add personality to a bland dorm wall with little effort (you can use thumbtacks which are approved by most university residence hall protocol. Simple tacks will do the job at keeping them in place all year long!)
And, you can almost find them anywhere!
- $ – you can find all kinds of affordable tapestry patterns in all different colors on Amazon.com!
- $$ – if you are willing to splurge a little, Society6 offers a variety of unique and bold designs for a little extra cash
- $$-$$$ – I think we can all agree that Urban Outfitters knows what they’re doing when it comes to home decor. Their tapestries do not disappoint! And, some options are pretty budget-friendly!
A Decor DIY!
These dream-catcher-esque wall hangings add the sweetest whimsical touch to my room! Not only are they super adorable, they were insanely easy and cheap to make!
Here’s what you need to make your own:
- Hot glue gun
First, gather three twigs around the same length (I got mine from my backyard!) then, begin connecting them together by tying a knot around both ends
Next, begin connecting them together by tying a knot around both ends and wrapping the twine around multiple times while dabbing hot glue to adhere the twigs to the twine.
After you have your twig triangle, tie string at the top of the shape and wrap loosely around the twigs.
Lastly, cut up fabric in about 2″ wide, 3′ long strips, fold in half longways and pull through loop.
Ta-da! An easy, simple, and earthy addition to your abode.
Thanks for stopping by!
Having a cozy space doesn’t mean it has to be costly. You can easily find cute decor items at shops like TJ Maxx, Target, or Marshalls, or even go the Amazon route to achieve a dreamy dorm.
Just refer back to these tips for the sweetest space you’ll never want to leave!
Give of your time. Give of your money. Give of your resources. Whatever you do in this life, give. Pour yourself out. People need you. You can make a life-changing impact in this world, but you have to give parts of your heart and life away first. The return on the investment of giving is much more valuable than keeping yourself to yourself.
If you need motivation, give.
If you are lacking inspiration, give.
If you are needing love, give.
If you are low on cash, give.
No one has ever become poor by giving.