As I moved into my new studio apartment, I started to feel a shift in my life. One, was the increased amount of time I had in the morning now that it lacked a 20-minute commute. However, this time couldn't be spent sleeping due to the excessive amount of light that shines through my east-facing windows. And yet, I'm far from upset. Actually, I now look forward to waking up every morning, feeling fresh and energized so start my day. I now begin each new day with a little journaling, TV news (guilty pleasure!), and lots and lots of coffee (cuz I'm a millennial blogger and don't we all run on the stuff?).
With the change in my environment, I've started to enjoy more while having less. And just like with my developing capsule wardrobe, I couldn't be happier. And so, I thought some people might be interested in how I've achieved this. First things first, I recognize that these steps aren't solutions for everyone; and they're not supposed to be. If all you get from reading this is an eye roll, that's okay. I'm still happy to have had you as a visitor!
1. When all else fails, drink water.
Feeling beautiful starts from within and I can't stress enough the importance of hydration. Sure, I'm not gulping down eight bottles of water a day, but I'm trying.
Pro Tip: Drink some water before the coffee in the morning. Oftentimes, sleep leaves us dehydrated, which then makes us more tired. Rehydration is often the key to my waking up.
2. Bask in the sunshine: enjoy your mornings.
I understand that this may come off as silly. You might be thinking that you're not a morning person and you'd much rather enjoy your mornings sleeping. But I swear, there's something about the morning light that makes usual tasks a lot more enjoyable. Plan a ritual that you look forward to in the morning. For me, that's sitting on the sofa (often with Charlie, my cat, sitting on me) watching Today and journaling, while sipping on my hot brew. And say it's super cloudy and rainy out? Find a favorite mug with some artwork or texture that you adore and bring it in to your morning ritual.
3. Plan your meals ahead of time and buy less.
This one is hard for me to stick to - honestly, I'm just not the best at meal planning. Though one good habit that I've been able to keep up is only buying what I can eat in a week and making sure that I don't buy too much of things that will spoil quickly. Not only is my fridge less packed and smelly (okay, it was never that smelly), but my wallet is thanking me too!
4. Put multitasking on hold for just a sec.
I understand that society today often stresses the importance of being able to multitask. It got brought up so much in previous job interviews, that I just started to assume it was a necessary feature to inhabit. However, in my experience, multitasking diminishes the joy you can get from something because your head is distracted and being pulled in multiple directions. How can you fully appreciate the costume design of West World (and keep up!) if your head is face down in your phone? How good is that food really tasting if your body is distracted by The Bachelor on the tube? I just can't. So feel free to unplug (that means phone, computer, tv, beepers, etc) and enjoy the meal as it is: delicious.
5. Accept that it's totally okay to not be "busy."
One of the things that I hear constantly when asking how someone is doing is the response "busy." As millennials, our parents stressed the importance of managing multiple extracurricular activities along with schoolwork and volunteer work. It was exhausting. And yet many of us continue down this path in our adult lives. Nowadays, we're essentially told that if you're not busy then you're not successful in both your career and personal life. There's this constant peer pressure to be "busy" and I can't stand it. I think the glamorization of "busy" has gone overboard and we need to reel it some of it back and enjoy the little things again.
Lately, I must wear many different hats in order to run my business and thus my life has gotten a wee bit busier. However, I've managed to slow down and allocate time for just me. For me, this is the early mornings over coffee, but for you, it can be anything.
6. Surround yourself with things that make you feel happy -
lather, rinse, repeat.
I own a clothing store, so obviously "surrounding" myself involves my closet and what I wear everyday. For me, things that make me feel happy include anything super soft and textured. For example, silk and sheepskin. I also love embroidery and stripes and so I wear a bunch of these. But you don't have to completely redo your wardrobe all at once - go about slowly and surely and you'll end up collecting an assortment that's truly "you."