Why Minimalism Isn’t “One Size Fits All”

 

If you’re someone who has been considering living more minimally, you’ve probably heard some blatant lies and assumptions about this lifestyle like:

“I heard those people only wear neutral-colored clothes.”

“You’re going to live in a tiny home?”

“Are you only going to own 30 things?!?”

“But you can’t have makeup/jewelry/anything non-essential…”

“Well your home isn’t ‘minimal’ like *insert person here*”

“You have WAY too many clothes to be a minimalist.”

Let’s set the record straight for anyone who is confused. Minimalism isn’t, and shouldn’t be, a one-size-fits-all concept.

There, I said it.

While I love that people are jumping on the bandwagon of simplifying their lives and pursuing a more minimalist lifestyle, there are some problems that come with popularity of a trend or lifestyle in general.

Personally, I don’t feel comfortable identifying as a minimalist because people assume I live in a tiny home, only own 30 items of clothing, only have black, white or grey furniture/clothes/anything a person can own, etc. The things you see on Instagram and Pinterest when you type in “Minimalism” isn’t the only version of how a minimalist can live. There are minimalists who also live in a house. There are minimalist who have an extensive wardrobe or makeup collection. There are minimalists who don’t wear black or white.

Like all other roles in life, identifying as a minimalist can place you in a box that people unnecessarily place you in, which is not only wrong but it also gives people the wrong interpretation of what minimalism is.

Like everything else, minimalism is dependent on the person and their lifestyle. 

A mother of three who identifies as a minimalist will not have the same lifestyle, or home as a 18-year-old student who identifies as a minimalist. There are no set boundaries or rules that “The Book of Minimalism” shares with its most dedicated followers. (If you couldn’t tell by my sarcasm, that book isn’t real.) But rather, it’s about understanding the key concept of minimalism and how you can appropriately apply that concept to your life. And what is that concept, you ask?

Discovering what’s essential and non-essential, and being able to focus on the essential while removing the non-essential. 

If you realize that condensing your wardrobe from 400 pieces to 200 pieces is minimalist enough for you, that’s great. If you’re getting rid of your TV because you simply don’t watch it, awesome. If you’re in love with cooking, and can’t part with your cookware because you use it every day, keep it! The point of minimalism is to find what’s important to you and find what you truly love and need in your life. Minimalism is also about being able to remove all of the things you don’t love and don’t need in your life. It’s a process and a journey, but it is definitely worth it.

Minimalism is a wonderful thing. But with social media, people are under the impression that there is only one way to live a minimalist lifestyle; and I’m here calling shedding some light on that myth. Minimalism can change to fit the needs of your lifestyle and your home. The way you view minimalism can be completely different than how other person views it. It’s all still minimalism.

What does minimalism look life to you based on your life? I would love to read all the different responses based on your lifestyles, so make sure to share in the comments below!

 

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7 Things to Consider Before Graduating Early

For those who don’t know, my college experience was very unique. I graduated a year early from a private university; and I was able to get my Bachelor’s and Master’s, and a minor in four years. I loved and appreciated my college experience despite the fact it wasn’t your typical college experience. I want to share why I decided to graduate early, and what advice I have for current college students who are considering graduating early as well.

I’m going to be honest. My decision to graduate early was not an easy decision, and there were many factors that came into play. I knew going into college that I could graduate early because I had a lot of college credits from high school, so this idea was in my mind from the beginning of my college career. But, I didn’t think I would want to graduate early because college is a fun and I didn’t want to cut that experience short, but I had many reasons for wanting to graduate early.

If you’re on the fence about wanting to graduate early, here are some things to consider if you’re questioning whether you should or not:

1| Is it possible?

The first question you need to ask yourself is whether or not you can graduate early. Some academic programs are quite intense and rigorous with scheduling, lab requirements, internship requirements, etc. Make sure you consider all areas of your academic program. If you’re not to type of person who can handle six (or more) classes a semester, this might not be the right choice for you.

2| Find out the why.

Why do you want to graduate early? I personally had several reasons: 1. I knew it was possible. 2. I wanted to save money on my Bachelor’s and Master’s because I couldn’t afford to be in school for six years.  3. And I knew I could graduate early without feeling like I “missed out” on a college experience. Find out your reasons for why you want to graduate early as weigh the pros and cons of graduating in three years verses graduating in four years.

3| Make a plan.

I made my plan for all four years of college during my freshman year. I knew that if I was going to graduate in four years with two degrees, it was going to take conscious planning and effort. I planned all my classes for six semesters, which included courses for my B.A. and M.A. in addition to planning my internship requirements, when I would study abroad, what organizations I would be involved in, etc. Consider everything that goes into your college experience and make sure you write down a plan.

4| Stay dedicated.

Most people tell me that they have considered graduating early from college, but by their third year, they lose motivation and focus, and decide to come back for that final year. Don’t put in time and effort if you’re going to sell yourself short, and not follow through with your plan. It’s so important to keep reminding yourself of why you wanted to graduate early in the first place. Remember the money and time you’re saving, or any other reason why you’ve decided this in the first place. You got this!

5| Don’t overthink it.

I remember overthinking my decision a month prior to graduation back in 2015. I was done, and I was about to go on to finishing my M.A. in my fourth year of school, and I was overthinking whether or not this was a good decision. “But what if I don’t pass my Master’s thesis, and this was all for nothing?” “What if I regret not spending that extra year in school?” Don’t let the “what if” questions get to you because it’s not worth losing sleep over. Again, remember why you started this journey, and follow through.

6| Don’t let school take over your life.

I can’t tell you how many people thought that just because I was graduating early meant that I did nothing but study and focus on school. This couldn’t be further from the truth. I had a social life, I was involved in organizations on campus, I had internships, I blogged, and I took care of myself by getting eight hours of sleep, working out three days a week and giving myself breaks to relax. It’s so important to NOT only focus on school so that you can have a life outside of studying and working.

7| Don’t settle.

I think people settle on a potential job or graduate programs because they’re graduating early from college. If you have dreams to graduate early, but you also want to move to a big city and follow your dreams of working in a law firm—do it. If you want to graduate early, so you can have money to travel abroad for a month, or to start your own business—do it. Don’t let your current decision to graduate early affect the plans you set for yourself after graduation. Always follow your dreams and go for it.


If you’re considering graduating early, I hope this post helped answer some questions and gave you some insight on what goes into the process of graduating early. If you decide that this isn’t the right choice for you, that’s completely okay. But, if you do find that graduating early is right for you—Make a plan, stay dedicated and keep moving forward. I promise that the hard work and dedication will pay off!

Did you graduate early, or did you attend college for all four years? If you could go back, would you consider graduating early from college? Why or why not? Make sure to leave a comment below!

 

Ki Signature

 

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5 Looks I’m Lusting For: May

For awhile, I have been lacking some inspiration with my style over the last month. With the weather being in limbo from spring to an awkward fall season all in one month. Finally, that lack of inspiration has been fading and slowly, but surely, I have feeling my inspiration for fashion come back. As we move into warmer months and the end of spring, I’m falling in love with simple staple pieces like denim jeans, sandals, and fun tops!

Today, I’m sharing some looks I’m lusting for this month. A common theme I’ve noticed for the looks I’ve been inspired by are more casual and versatile. My style has evolved so much over the course of a year, and as I get older, I realize that comfortable is far more important to me than anything else! But let’s be real, who doesn’t want a stylish outfit that’s also comfortable enough to wear from 7 a.m. to 10 at night? Make sure to leave a comment below on what fashion looks you have been inspired by recently.

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Wedges + Off-the-Shoulder Top + Denim = a perfect combination for a late spring/early summer outfit! Although I don’t any gingham-patterned clothing, there’s something I love about this look. It reminds me of a New England staple pattern everyone would have if I went to Rhode Island. Maybe that’s why I find it so inspiring—it’s out of my comfort zone in terms of what I would wear on a regular basis.

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Dark denim has always been my favorite. I feel like it’s the closest item you can consider professional because they’re sleek and can easily be dressed up with the right pair of shoes and top. Speaking of tops, can we talk about the trends going on in this one? These bell sleeves, high collar and cut-out shoulders are everything I want and need in my closet. Paired with trendy, neutral shoes, and you’re ready for a date night or a night with friends!

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Last summer, the pom pom detailing exploded in the fashion world. However, I wasn’t fully on board with this trend because it was EVERYWHERE: bags, dresses, shoes, earrings, scarves. If you would wear it in some form, they could put some pom poms on it. Needless to say, I didn’t think I was going to love this trend, but when it’s put together with the right items like simple shoes and limited accessories, they can make an outfit pop!

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Remember what I said about being able to put poms poms on anything and everything? Well, they’re on a pair of shoes; and I think I’m in love with them! I also LOVE that low-heel, chunky sandals are popular for spring and summer this year. I’m all about comfortable shoes I can wear all day long. No one has time for shoes that make their feet hurt. I also love the detail in the sleeves on this smock dress. It is something you can easily wear as early as April and wear until late October because of its versatility (weather permitting, of course).

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Another trend that I’ve been seeing so much of recently (and loving) is the ruffles trend. Now, don’t get me wrong, this isn’t necessarily my style anymore, however I’m still inspired by feminine, soft looks like the one above. The ruffles paired with the off-the-shoulder trend makes this top “America’s Most Wanted” for spring and summer. I also have been loving all the different looks I’ve been seeing with white denim, it motivates me and inspires me to take out my own pair and actually wear them!

What looks have you been inspired by recently? What trends are you loving for spring and summer? Make sure to share in the comments below!

 

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31 Tips To Stay Blissful All-Month Long

Let’s be honest, friends—life can be stressful. Work can be too much, and we forget to enjoy moments outside of the office and be present in the moment. Needless to say, the last two months at work have been a lot and I’m making it my mission to focus on life outside of work because self-care is important and you should always be focusing on things that make you happy.

1| Take a walk.

2| Read a book.

Read: Why you Need Hygge in your Life

3| Two words: Adult Coloring.

4| Take a drive.

5| Watch your favorite movie.

6| Call a friend to catch up.

7| Treat yourself to a manicure or pedicure.

8| Binge-watch Netflix.

9| Do your favorite workout.

10| Meditate.

11| Write down five things you’re grateful for.

12| Wake up 30 minutes early and enjoy your morning.

13| Blast your favorite song and SING!

14| Be present in the moment, whatever that moment may be.

15| Write a list of everything you love.

16| Have a glass of wine (or three).

17| Treat yourself to your favorite Starbucks drink.

18| Have a girl’s night in.

19| Try a new restaurant in your city.

20| Have a no-complaint day.

21| Buy yourself flowers.

22| Make your favorite meal.

23| Declutter your closet.

Read: 10 Things to Remove from your Closet Right Now

Read: 8 Tips to Master your Closet

24| Buy the cake & eat it, too.

25| Dog Therapy (Yes I’m serious and you’re welcome in advance.)

26| Go to bed early.

Read: Mental Cleanse Challenge Week 2

27| Drink water.

28| Write for fun.

29| Take your workout outside.

30| Put on a face mask.

Read: 5 Holy Grail Skincare Products that Will Change Your Skin

31| Think positively.

I hope you find time to slow down this month and truly enjoy every moment that comes your way. Life is too quick not to appreciate all the little things that make it special. 

Make sure to share how you focus on self-care and what you’ll be doing this month to stay blissful. Share how you treat yourself after a stressful day (or week) so we can all focus on the good this month!

 

Ki Signature

 

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More for Mom: Gift Ideas for Mother’s Day

It’s time to celebrate your mom who packed your lunch for years on end, made sure you had clean laundry, and who (still) gives you extra food to take home after a family dinner. #Blessed

Mother’s Day is a day where we remind ourselves of all the work our moms have done. Real talk, when you’re a mom—you do it all. So I give TONS of credit to the moms out there who act as a chef, house cleaner, laundry-doer, driver, personal cheerleader, doctor, and so much more. Y’all are amazing.

With that in mind, it’s always nice to do a little more for mom around this time of year, which is why I’m sharing five simple but thoughtful gifts to give to your mom this Mother’s Day that won’t break the bank. These are gifts and gestures your mom will surely appreciate. Be sure to leave a comment below telling me your plans for your mom this Mother’s Day! 

1| What I Love About Mom Book: Francesca’s

I enjoy a personalized gift that will show the time, effort and energy you put into a gift. I had no idea when I got this for my mom, she would cry tears of joy simply from reading my messages inside. If you enjoy personal gifts for your mom, I would definitely recommend this!

2| Coffee Date

Because what’s better than taking time out of the day to relax for an hour or two over some coffee with your mom? Treat her to Starbucks or your favorite local shop in town. It’s a simple gesture, but it’s perfect for the mom who simply prefers to spend time with you rather than receiving gifts.

3| Alex and Ani Mom Bracelet: Alex and Ani

If your mom hasn’t been introduced to Alex and Ani, she will love that her first bracelet is a Mother’s day bracelet! It’s a simple gift, but it’s versatile and can be worn with other jewelry she may have. If she already has her fair share of Alex and Ani bracelets, opt for something more unique from a local boutique in your town.

4| Edible Arrangements: EdibleArrangement.com

Ya’ll, let’s be honest. Everyone knows that Edible Arrangements are amazing, and there’s no one more deserving of this gift than your mom. There are several different packages to choose from, and no matter what—she will love this gift because who doesn’t want chocolate-covered fruit!?

5| Mom Mug: Target

If you don’t live in the same state or city as your mom and can’t be with her for Mother’s Day, send a cute mug like this one from Target with a gift card to her favorite coffee shop, or a package of her favorite coffee to make at home! It’ll be the perfect way for her to enjoy a little down time and think of you every time she uses her mug.

What are your plans for Mother’s Day? What other gift ideas do you have for your mom? Be sure to share in the comments below!

 

Ki Signature

 

 

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