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minimalist

5 Habits for a Productive Weekend

Posted in Lifestyle
on January 24, 2018

I’m sure the last thing you want to do on the weekend is more work. The week can feel long, tiring, and stressful sometimes, so the weekend is a time to relax, unwind and chill out for 48 hours. Although this is true sometimes, the majority of our weekends may feel JUST as busy and scheduled as a typical weekday. So how do you balance meal prepping, time with family and friends, and doing all the things you need to get done? If you want to take your weekends back so that you can enjoy time with family AND get things done, then keep reading for five habits you’re NEED in your life ASAP.

1| Start Early

I know you want to sleep in, but this is what can make or break your productive day. If you typically wake up at 7 a.m. for a workday, wake up at 6 a.m. on a Saturday. I know, you hate me. But TRUST ME when I say that you will be amazed at how much you can get done straight away in the morning on a Saturday. Make the most of the hour by baking the chicken you left thawing overnight after you throw a load of laundry in the washer. Make it your mission to cross off 3-4 big tasks for the day.  You will get things done in the morning and it will have you feeling amazing about the day ahead.

2| Time Block + Prioritize

What are the TOP SIX things you need to get done today? Make sure you get the hard things out of the way first, so that you aren’t dreading them all day long and continuously putting them off. Find the big things you’re not looking forward to, and get them done. Time block in section of two or three hours, so the day feels less overwhelming. That way, you can focus on the two hours ahead of you rather than the entire day as a whole. Continue prioritizing your tasks for the day based on what needs immediate attention and what can be put off for tomorrow. And don’t forget to include breaks and family time! Write in time for a movie night and hanging out with the family from 7 to 10 p.m., so that you know you have to be done with everything before 7 p.m.

3| Pomodoro Technique

I SWEAR by this method because it makes a huge difference in my productivity. Every weekend is different, of course, but some Saturdays, I try to crank out some blog posts if I can to stay well ahead of my schedule. The goal of this technique is to work on ONE task straight for 25-30, and then take a break for five minutes. For blogging, it’s the perfect amount of time to sit down and get a good outline and starting draft before the time is up. Then, I’ll set my timer for five minutes for water, take a quick walk around the house, or call my parents. You want to cherish those five minutes because then you’re going back to work for another set. It’s amazing how focused you become when you have a countdown in tour head every 30 minutes. Whether you’re cooking, cleaning, blogging, or running errands, this technique is so helpful for a productive day.

4| Batch Tasking

Batch tasking is something else I swear by not only for blogging maintenance, but also for my home. I batch task with meal prepping for about two hours on Sunday, which gets most of our meals for the entire week. Now, I’m not spending time every single day worrying about what we’re going to have for lunches and dinners. The goal of batch tasking is to only focus on one task continuously. For blogging, I batch task by creating Instagram content, drafting tweets for the week, or editing posts. Once that hour is up, you’ll have meals for the week, or all of your social media content prepped for the week. Essentially, you’re saving yourself tons of time for the upcoming week, which is NEVER  a bad thing!

5| Don’t Stress Yourself Out

If you’re reading this post, you might be very much like me: type-A personality, hyper-organized, and very hard on yourself. Although it’s easier said than done, remember not to be so hard on yourself and not to stress yourself out. Don’t set crazy expectations for yourself if you have a lot going on in one day. Remember to take breaks throughout the day and spend time with your loved ones. Don’t only make the weekend about getting things done and working another 10-hour day. Be realistic and set time aside for all your meals and even more breaks in between. You GOT THIS and you can get everything done! And, if you don’t get everything done, it’s perfectly okay. Don’t stress, and enjoy your day off as well.

Ready to have a productive weekend? What are your tips for getting things done on the weekend? Tell me what your plans are for this weekend? Is it a Netflix-binge-kind-of day? Or, do you have a lot on your to-do list that you’re trying to get done? Make sure to share in the comments below!

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Focusing on Balance in the New Year

Posted in Lifestyle
on January 8, 2018

Millennials work pretty hard if you ask me.

Most of my friends are working two jobs, or working full-time and going to grad school, or working full-time and pursuing a side business. I love to see all these amazing people chase their dreams and go after their goals. It’s incredible.

But also, I worry about this generation because we have normalized a busy scheduled. We have forgotten what it’s like to practice self care, take time to pursue slow living and live in the moment. We lose this sense of balance in our lives, and it’s time we make balance a priority in 2018. Instead of only focusing on your 9-5 job, make time to focus on everything that’s important to you.

Stop working 10-hour days, and make time for rest.

Stop isolating yourself, and make plans with people you love.

Stop ignoring your goals, and make them happen.

And I’m sure you’re wondering how you can make this happen.

Minimalism is how I achieve the ultimate balance in life. It’s how you’ll be able to work an eight-hour day, have time for self care, friends and family, vacation, and everything else that’s important to you.

How?

With minimalism, you’re removing all the non-essential things in your life to make room for all the essential things in your life including the goals you have for yourself. Minimalism helps you achieve your goals, so it’s a win-win situation for you and your life.

Related: Why Minimalism is Refreshing

After decluttering my home, I spend less time cleaning every day, so I have time to have a girl’s night with my friends, catch up with my family on FaceTime, blog, and take time for myself. After implementing positive habits in my life like meal prepping on Sundays, I don’t waste hours every day cooking and making meals each day, which leaves time for appointments, workouts, sleep, and wedding planning.

Does it take extra effort to plan shopping lists in advance and meal prep meals in one day? YES! But, the amount of time, energy, and money I save in the long run is more than worth it.

After planning productive weekdays, I can spend an entire Saturday in my bed without any guilt. There’s always room for recharging my mind and body. Giving yourself time to recharge is so important, especially since we have glorified the idea of busyness.

Instead of stressing yourself out with to-do lists longer than a short novel, start with minimalism. Remove what you don’t need to make room for the things you need. 

The benefits you’ll see after taking on a more minimalist lifestyle are life changing! Instead of always feeling the need to hustle, work another job, do another project we simply can’t take on—remind yourself that you deserve a break. Stay balanced in life. Remember to take care of yourself. Get check-ups regularly. Drink water. Get enough sleep each night. Do things you love. Minimalism allows you to stay balanced and grounded.

So, how will you be more balanced in 2018? Maybe you work an extra five hours a week, and you haven’t made yourself a meal in a week. So not only are you overworked, but you’re also not taking care of yourself. It’s time to stop the bad habits that busyness brings, and get minimalism, and intentional living in your life. Trust me when I say that you WON’T regret it.

It’s a new year, so I’m interested to hear on how you plan to live a more balanced life in 2018? What part of your life in unbalanced? What can you do to make it right? Make sure to share in the comments below!

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Goals for 2018

Posted in Lifestyle
on January 3, 2018

Time to join the rest of the bloggers for the annual post on what goals I have for the new year.

A few weeks ago, I talked about how I want to rethink my goals for 2018 because I felt that some goals I had weren’t specific and weren’t necessarily related to the bigger goals I have for my life. Although I felt accomplished with the goals I reached, I also felt like I didn’t even accomplish anything at all because it didn’t lead me to a bigger goal.

When I look back at 2017, I feel proud, happy and everything other feel-good emotion. At the same time, I felt like my goals weren’t exactly conducive to the life I hope to live. For example, what is increasing my social media following/engagement by 20% going to do for me in five years?

Don’t get me wrong, some of my goals were VERY important to me, like not focusing on numbers for health and wellness. Yet, at the same time, I had another goal to increase my weekly running distance, which is very numbers-oriented.

See what I’m saying?

Our goals shouldn’t be just about what we want to achieve in one year. Rather, they should be on-going additions we want to incorporate in our lives for years to come because they’re important to us. 

This helped me rethink the direction of my goals for the new year, and helped me realize what I want to accomplish. Now, my goals feel more intentional for what I want to achieve in life.  With all that said, here are my goals for 2018:

1| Put an extra $5,000 in savings. 

Why this goal is important: Financial stability is a huge stress for people. My goal is to continue saving regularly, so that I never have to worry about making necessary purchases. My goal is life is to consistently travel, so I hope to travel more with this financial stability. I also hope to

2| Focus on being my healthiest self.

Why this goal is important: I’ve been on a journey toward living a healthier life, but toward the end of the year, I wasn’t keeping up with my health like I should have. For 2018, I’m making changes to practice self-care frequently, eating fresh, whole foods, and focusing on workouts that I genuinely enjoy.

3| Continue living simply and minimally. 

Why this goal is important: I’ve noticed a HUGE change in my life since focusing on minimalism and simple living. Minimalism helps me achieve my goals, and it also helps me save money, which gives me time to do the things I love like traveling, blog, etc.

4| Travel. 

Why this goal is important: Traveling is something I’ve always felt passionate about. It’s the reason I want to save money, and live minimally. There are simply too many beautiful places in the world, and I want to visit new places as often as possible. We have our honeymoon planned already, but I’m hoping to squeeze in another short trip during the year.

5| Develop my marketing skills.

Why this goal is important: I love the field I work in, and I’m so happy to wake up and go to a job I love. That being said, I plan to be in the field for a long time, so I want to continue developing my skills in marketing by taking online classes, listening to seminars, and reading more about marketing. 2018 is a year I want to grow as a Marketing Director, and I’m excited to see where this goal takes me!

What are your goals for 2018? How can you be more intentional with your goals for the new year?

 

Ki Signature

 

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The Ultimate Gift Guide For Minimalists

Posted in Health, Lifestyle
on October 20, 2017

Yes, I know that you maybe thinking that it’s way too early for Christmas. 

Well, let me tell you that it’s NEVER too early to get ready for the holidays. Plus, planning ahead of time is what decreases stress and increases bliss before the craziness of the holidays come in full force. So, if you’re looking for a little bliss, and looking to prepare in advance for some holiday shopping, keep reading. I’m collaborating with my wonderful blogging friend, Erin from A Welder’s Wife to bring you some gift ideas for the minimalist friends in your life. So, make sure to read her post on the same topic! Erin is a talented writer, and her blog posts on minimalism are always inspirational.

Keep in mind while reading this post that the gift ideas are meant to simply someone’s life. They aren’t things that your aunt or sister would expect unless they are living a minimalist, simple lifestyle. So, while these gifts might not seems like the right type of gifts that would appeal to everyone—they will definitely work well for the minimalist friend on your list who you know will appreciate a gift that simplifies their life.

1| Reusable Bags

One of the top items I use and love is a reusable bag for grocery shopping, and it has decrease our need for gathering plastic bags from Target. Instead of holding onto plastic, your friend will help the planet by using a bag for all of their shopping. Plus, they can use these for traveling or errands. For the reusable bag, you can include other gifts inside that you know your friend would love like a book on their wish list, their favorite candle, or a tin of Christmas cookies. Make sure to include a note that explains her favorite things in the bag and that the bag that holds everything is reusable and can help make any farmer’s market trip stress-free and easy!

2| Cleaning Cloths 

I’ve been taking steps to reduce the amount of unnecessary products like napkins, paper towels and similar items. So, I’ve been using more green-friendly products that make cleaning simple and easy like these cleaning cloths. Any busy mom, or environmentally-conscious friend would love these. Not only can they be washed easily, but they also replace up the 15 rolls of paper towels. You can feel good about helping the environment and giving a gift you know your friend will be using every single day. You can create a gift with items that are made from recycled materials, or gifts that give back to charities to help the environment. This is especially the perfect gift for your minimalist friend who doesn’t want extra things in their home when they can get everything done with one item.

3| Coconut Oil

You’re probably wondering what friend would want coconut oil. Well, fear not because you don’t have to give your friend a jar of coconut oil and call it a day. Coconut oil can be used not only for cooking or cleaning, but also for beauty items as well. It’s the perfect, multi-purpose item that your minimalist, simple-living friend and use all-year long. Coconut oil can be use as a moisturizer, cuticle treatment, deep conditioner for your hair and more. So, you can create a relaxing, pampering basket that includes: coconut oil, a face mask, essential oil, and you can even create a DIY scrub that uses coconut oil in it!

4| Gift Cards

While you have a ton of options with this one, you have to keep in mind that you want to think about where you’re buying the gift card for? Is it a store that will promote unnecessary shopping? If yes, then it might not be the best gift for your minimalist friend. Instead, treat your friend to a gift certificate for a local market, an all-natural, beauty shop, or a place where they can get anything they need (hello, Target)! Make sure you’re intentional about the gift cards you choose. If you know they’re working on home projects, buy a gift card from Lowe’s or Home Depot to help them out. Keep in mind what your friend loves, and they will be sure to appreciate the thought.

5|  Multi-Purpose Cleaner

Another gift where you’re probably thinking, girl, no one wants cleaning products for Christmas. And while I agree with you, I also think that you can make anything personal and useful to a minimalist. Minimalists love gifts that make their life simple, and a multi-purpose cleaner is definitely a great way to reduce the amount of products you’re using with chemicals. Another basket idea you can make can include home essentials like the multi-purpose cleaner, essential oils for a relaxing space, the cleaning cloth mentioned above, mason jars (to store food, prep meals, or store other home items), and other things you know your friend or family member would find useful. Remember, it’s all about gifting items that will simplify their life, and that will be used in their home.

6| All-In-One Planner

If your friend is a die-hard fan of using a traditional planner, an all-in-one planner is the way to go! Choose one that not only keeps their daily schedule in track, but it can track meal planning, the amount of much water they drink, workouts, daily to-do lists, positive mantras, and more. Finding a planner that can help organize all these items will be sure to simplify your friend’s life. You can also introduce your friend to a bullet journal and get a few colors pens to get them started. Maybe it’s a project you both and begin together to help simplify your lives. Take the day together to start planning your monthly, weekly trackers and lay out your new bullet journals together.

Whatever you decide to purchase for your minimalist friend, keep in mind one question: “What will help simplify their life and make their life easier?” Whether you put together an at-home spa basket, or a bag or home essentials, you can be certain that she will love the gifts that are simple and what will improve their life. Don’t forget to check out Erin’s post where she shares even MORE gift ideas for the minimalist friends on your holiday gift list. Be sure to stop back next week where we collaborate on another holiday-related post for you!

What gifts have you given to a minimalist friend in the past? What are some minimalist gift ideas that YOU have been given that you have loved? P.S. what is one thing on your wish list for the holidays? Make sure to share everything in the comments below!

Ki Signature

 

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5 Ways to Practice Minimalism [That Doesn’t Involve Decluttering]

Posted in Health, Lifestyle
on October 16, 2017

I know what you’re thinking…

You think that minimalism is ALL about decluttering. Decluttering your closets, decluttering your kitchen, decluttering your basement. It’s all about getting rid of things you don’t use. I’m here to drop a major truth bomb.

Minimalism isn’t ONLY about decluttering.

Sure, is it a huge focus that you see all over Pinterest and YouTube? Yes, it definitely is. But I want people to understand that there are so many other ways to practice this lifestyle that doesn’t involve you going through your entire house and purging every other day. Although I definitely believe decluttering is extremely helpful in this process, it isn’t the only component of living more minimally. So, I’m here to share five other ways you can practice living a minimalist lifestyle, that has nothing to do with decluttering.

1| Focus on your buying habits.

You can declutter all you want, but if you’re going right back to the store—then you’re not doing yourself any good. The purpose of minimalism is that you’re removing the non-essential to make more room for what is essential. It’s about only having what you need rather than a new trend you may want temporarily. This could be a long post by itself, but you can also focus on shopping consciously at second-hand shops and thrifting for items to help with budgeting and ethical shopping. P.S. Have you checked out the true cost? It’s absolutely life-changing.

2| Go green + DIY.

Another area where you can simplify and minimize your life is with cleaning and beauty products. I’ve been focusing on streamlining my beauty routine and researching more on DIY scrubs, and natural products for my skin like coconut oil and homemade coffee scrubs. You can also clean a lot of of your home using vinegar and essential oils. There are tons of bloggers out there who are helpful should you decide to learn more about natural, green products for cleaning and beauty.

3| Rethink your food.

I have to give my brother and sister a shoutout here because I admire how they garden. They grow their own vegetables, fruit and herbs—and you can tell they enjoy the process and work behind it. Minimalism deals with consumption, which includes the food you eat. I’ve been trying hard to stay away from processed foods and enjoy a mix of fruits, vegetables, and protein. When we move into our home, I hope to do a little more with planting herbs and gardening in hopes that it will help me choose more plants and healthy, whole foods rather than snacks and junk food.

4| Practice what you preach. 

If you’re practicing minimalism, how do you show others? When the holidays roll around, are you giving nieces and nephews more clothes they don’t need, and toys they may only use for a short time? If yes, you’re not being faithful in your practices. Although not everyone practices this lifestyle, it’s important to remember that practicing what you preach is essential. If people see you giving unnecessary things, people will give YOU unnecessary things YOU don’t need or want. You’re only hurting yourself in the long run. Instead, give your niece and nephew day passes to the local zoo, aquarium, museum, or park they love. Give your sibling a date night with their spouse to a trampoline park or a new brewery. Give experiences or things they need or are useful.

5|  How are your goals?

Let’s say you’ve been working on this how minimalism business for awhile now, and you’ve purged your entire house from top to bottom. You went from spending an hour every day cleaning to two hours a week cleaning. You now have TONS of time on your hands because you aren’t cleaning and cooking for hours every single day. So what are you spending your time on? If you’re filling up your time with Netflix and social media—stop immediately. Get our your vision board and see what you want to accomplish. Now, make more time to actually work on those goals. Minimalism is about making time and space for the goals and life you want to live. Now, go do it.

You all know I love a good decluttering session, but there are other aspects of minimalism that will bring bliss to your life. Once you’re done decluttering, look to some of the other examples above like growing your own food, focusing on your goals and dreams, and overhauling your shopping habits.

What area of minimalism do you think would be the easiest and hardest for your to apply to your life? What area of minimalism do you think you’ll tackle next? Or, are you still working on the decluttering stages of your journey? 

Ki Signature

 

 

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