16 Tiny Changes to Improve Your Life
Hello friends and welcome back to the blog dearest Reader!
Part of me wishes you and I were sitting on the beach right now, just chatting and letting our feet get tickled by the waves. Or maybe sitting across from each other in a small cafe in Austria, picking at some strudel and sipping coffee while we laugh and discuss all things femininity, homemaking, and well... LIFE!
I do daydream about meeting all of you: my online kindred spirits.
Now, a wonderful thing happened last week: I switched my posting schedule and it worked out so nicely for my life. I ended up switching the listicle to Wednesday instead of Friday and honestly... it was a FABULOUS change!
So I think I will be keeping this pattern for awhile, starting with today's light list of practical changes for some sweet life improvement.
Now I know that none of these tips will be hugely dramatic, emotional, or even that transformational, but I am a firm believer that shifting our lives in small ways may help us transform in larger ways. So let's dig into 15 tiny ways to invite extra doses of happiness, positivity, and confidence.
1. Tidy your desktop and phone backgrounds
In 2019 our phones and computers have become a sort of "parlor of thought and activity" for the modern lady. Instead of spending our afternoons crocheting and discussing life with our lady neighbors, many of us spend those hours on our phones and computers, working away at our social lives, side hustles, and studying. I like to imagine my phone and laptop as actual "rooms" that I spend time in and treat them as I would any other area in my home by cleaning, organizing, and tidying them out regularly!
On my phone, I like to delete apps I don't use, and rearrange the general layout of my phone regularly. I will upload a different phone background to something peaceful, positive, or inspirational, research new apps to download, and clean out all the dirt and germs from under my case. For my laptop, I like to switch up my desktop background, refile random files, and make sure all my software is up to date! Tidy technology brings true life improvement!
2. Buy flowers every other week
Now, I'm not one for expensive purchases that just end up in the trashcan, but I think I can make the exception for the occasional bouquet of flowers. There is just something about flowers that will improve your life and make your home feel a little more special. I think it's nice to add some more botanical beauty to our homes, and to take time to do something special for ourselves.
3. Use cuticle oil
I've mentioned this before, but cuticle oil has truly improved my life AND nails. The oil will strengthen your nails, allow them to grow, and most of all, help your manicure look a little extra polished.
4. Take your makeup off every night
I probably don't have to talk about this in detail because many of us are already aware, but honestly... it is worth it to take your makeup off every night, even if you are really tired. Sleeping with makeup will increase your breakouts, mess up your pillowcases, and most of all, age your skin. Take that extra five minutes to do your skin routine, and don't let yourself slip up! Self-discipline is key.
5. Fluff your couch pillows
AND rearrange them! There is no need to have flat miserable pillows flopped on the sofa. And for that matter, make sure there aren't yucky stains or crumbs all over your furniture. Imagine your furniture through the eyes of a guest, and try to keep things as inviting as possible.
Make sure your couch AND bed have a nice assortment of fluffed pillows: flip them upside down and fluff the feathers or stuffing accordingly. I know this might sound weird, but I believe that fluffed pillows are an easy way to feel like you have your life together.
6. Have a monthly "spa" night
Once or twice a month I will arrange a manicure and pedicure night for myself. I bring a pot of warm water down to the TV and soak my feet while watching a rented chick-flick. I scrub my feet with a pumas stone, and remove all the dead skin around my toenails. I prefer this to professional pedicures because I simply cannot enjoy a stranger scrubbing my feet because it's too ticklish (and expensive.)
A quick buff of the nails and my life is SO much better. I always do a base-coat, and a topcoat with three layers of colored polish in between. If any of you struggle with dry skin on your feet like I do, you'll feel so much more confident with a bi-monthly pedicure when it's time to wear sandals or go shoeless around others.
7. Design your outfit the night before
Okay, I know we're not little kids in middle school, but I truly feel like picking out your clothing the night before is often the answer for many style-stumped people. I'm a night owl, so my creative energy flows better in the evenings, as does my energy for outfit design!
I like to pick out my clothing options in the evening instead of when I'm still waking up in the morning. I will lay out EVERYTHING, including the undergarments, accessories, and "extras." Keeping your outfits on point is an easy way to feel like you have your life together.
8. Clean out your CAR
So many of us (myself HIGHLY included,) are running around with all sorts of nasty nonsense floating around in the bottom of our cars. Not only does this make us less confident when we need to transport guests, but it also just adds to the overall sloppiness of our lives.
Do yourself a favor and vacuum out the wheel wells of your car and take out all the trash! Wipe out the dust and get rid of all that random junk you've been carting around since the "big move of 2016." It will take 15 minutes and you will be 15x classier for it.
9. Install a password manager
This tip is an easy way to improve your life. How many of us forget ALL the different passwords we need to function!? I know I do. An app like Myki protects your passwords and even organizes them. Keeping your passwords all in one place in a password protected app is one of THE safest ways to keep your identity and accounts safe online.
10. Read Scripture morning and night
This tip may only be for Christians, but it has TRANSFORMED my life. Honestly, even if you are not a Christian, I would recommend reading Scripture in your life. I think everyone should explore the Bible at some point in their life.
Reading Scripture morning and night helps you start your day in the right mindset, and in the evening, it can help you put your day to bed the right way. If you need help, download a Bible app, but another good way to go about this is to read a Psalm in the morning and then a devotional or the New Testament in the evening.
11. Cleanse Your Hair
Have you ever been in the position where you wash your hair over and over, but it still feels DIRTY?! The buildup on your hair can make your hair feel stringy, or even dirty after you wash it repeatedly, and honestly make life feel much more miserable.
I have had this problem throughout my lifetime, and have only found ONE solution: cleansing. You can do this with a cleansing wash, a vitamin C rinse, or even an apple cider vinegar rinse. I like to cleanse my hair every wash or every other wash because I have really fine hair that attracts buildup very easily.
My husband looked at me yesterday and said that my hair has been looking really clean and healthy lately, and Reader, let me tell you... I was over the moon! Men don't really notice hair, (or at least MINE doesn't LOL) so the fact that he told me how nice it looked was a big win for me, and a big win for the cleansing method!
12. Make your bed everyday
Okay this is like taking your makeup off... we all know this tip, but how many of us actually do it every day!? Honestly, I will skip a day here and there, but the thing is that I know I always sleep better when I make the bed. There is something about tightly pulled sheets and a fluffed pillow (LOL here I am with the fluffed pillows again) that make it so much more enjoyable to head to bed in the evening.
Make your bed, and thank your mama later.
13. Switch up the music you listen to
Now I don't know if any of you will resonate with this, but I'm a "soft-rock" kind of woman: I love sad music, folky-blues, and just emotional music in general. But the problem with this is that it honestly makes me feel WORSE half the time.
Of course, we should always take in a variety of emotional experiences through the arts, but I do think we need to be careful about music, and understand that it has a huge affect on us. Although it can often be in the background of our lives, it has a significant impact on our emotional state.
Be mindful of how your music is affecting your mood, and when you can, choose inspirational or positive music. I like to listen to worship music, movie soundtracks, lo-fi, jazz, classical music, or traditional Celtic or world music. Sometimes, the less lyrics, the better.
14. Wear BLUSH
I think that the makeup industry has overwhelmed all of us with contouring, highlighting, and full-coverage foundation. There are so many powders, concealers, and all sorts of shadows to worry about that I think it's easy to forget the main motivation behind makeup: to look healthy and vibrant!
One of the biggest "tells" of a healthy face is having a nice flush on your cheeks, and yes my lovely Reader, that means BLUSH! Blush is an ancient and traditional makeup method that women have been using for thousands of years, and I think we need to take notes ladies.
Adding some rosy cheeks to a colorless face can add a lot of vitality to your face. It will help you look flushed, healthy, and rosy. I highly recommend blush to my pale ladies especially. Put it on the apples of your cheeks, but don't go too red or vibrant until you get comfortable with what works on your skin. I like a peachy pink!
15. Continue your "education"
I have said this before, but I don't believe that education should end when we complete high school or university. We should continually educate ourselves and always pursue higher levels of learning and information. But of course, this doesn't need to be traditional education, as I think it can be amazing to learn in fields we're actually INTERESTED in.
Take time to learn about philosophy, history, or any hobby like gardening, sewing, or anything else that intrigues you.
16. Have a "Tea Time"
This is a habit that my Dutch grandmother instilled in me; coffee time at 10am and tea time 3pm. It's nice to break up your day, gather your thoughts, and sip on some tea or coffee. These little breaks can actually add to your productivity and help your day feel less rushed!
Begin incorporating your version of a "Tea Time," and use that slice of a moment to scroll through your Bible, write down some thoughts, or sit in the sunshine. You don't even have to drink tea! Just 15 minutes to yourself in the morning AND the afternoon, and your life will feel just a little bit sweeter.
There you go my beauty! Thank you for reading, and thank you for spending time with me on the blog. I hope that these tips add a little extra sparkle to your lives!
Wishing you all the best!