9 ways to take better care of yourself

I have this book I’ve bought a couple of years ago and red about 4 times I think, written by a lady that moved from France to Japan because she felt the simplicity culture and uncomplicated way of living deeply resonated with her. And it’s a really great read.

More to the point, she talks about how to simplify the daily chores to have more time for yourself and the things you enjoy. It seems that Japanese people make it their ritual and discipline to take a care of their bodies and minds every day.

However, given the crazy pace of our lives it sounds like science fiction to have more time to put into something else when we finish everything that needs to be done.  Nothing would sound better than crashing on the couch with a glass of wine or just a pillow. Heh! 🙂

how to live more with less

But here’s some ideas from her book I really loved because they truly resonated with me. The thing is, you need to start very small, put 5 minutes today and 5 tomorrow into something and so on. If one day you cannot find time, resume the task when you can. This way the change will become a habit almost without notice. Wink!

1. GET RID OF THE STUFF YOU DON’T NEED

Many people get to the end of their lives surrounded by stuff they don’t care about, or are useless because they couldn’t decide what to do with them, didn’t have the courage to give away or sell them. Throw away/ donate the things that are too used up. Sell the things you seldom or never use.

What worked for me: I started looking around my home (and it took a few weeks) and saw that I too had a lot of things that were not used since…forever. I was just keeping them around just in case maybe sometime I might need them. So I started giving away some of the things I really didn’t need to my friends or sold them online or at yard sales. It made me feel so much better about giving up my stuff when I knew someone really enjoyed that particular item or that I could earn some extra money from it. My problem was that I was really attached to my objects so I wanted to find them owners that needed them.

2A HOME WITH LESS STUFF IN IT REQUIRES LESS MAINTENANCE AND CLEANING, BRINGING RELAXATION 

Nothing more to add here 🙂

3. FIX THE SMALL THINGS AROUND THE HOUSE THAT GET ON YOUR NERVES

Fix the small things around the house that you delayed, but get on your nerves: the broken tap, the shower, the noisy doors, the window that doesn’t keep the heat in during winter time , etc (insert your list here).

What I did so far: Until recently, my philosophy was that you can get used with anything that annoys you around the house, you just have to live with it long enough. So I tried to ignore the house problems as long as they were not life threatening.

Buuut, at some point I just decided to give this fixing idea a try and started repairing my noisy doors and solved a problem with the floor caused by a flood that affected 2 of the rooms. The repairs affected my budget quite a lot but not being annoyed every single day by the many little things brought me a huge (and I mean) huge relaxation. Now I started planning my budget to fix the next annoying thing. But that’s a story for another post 🙂

4.SURROUND YOURSELF WITH OBJECTS YOU ENJOY USING

If we are always surrounded by objects that we do not like or are not useful to us, those objects end up disturbing and irritating us (even if we realize it or not) and they cause toxic reactions in our hormonal balance. However, an object that is useful to us and that we use with pleasure brings a feeling of comfort and safety. When a bottle perfectly fits the shape of your hand you will use it more often than one you would need to bend your wrist to drink from. And this principle applies to everything.

5. TRY TO BUY SIMPLE RESISTANT OBJECTS FOR YOUR HOME

If you feel like eating like royalty from beautiful plates, go from time to time to an elegant restaurant. But for your home buy simple resistant plates that go with any style. The objects we use often should not be fragile or low quality as utility and beauty go hand in hand. If you are afraid of using an object out of fear of breaking it because it’s expensive or precious, the pleasure of using it will be greatly diminished. Objects are beautiful when they are used frequently and are appreciated for their functionality. Choose basic objects that “age” well.

ikea bowls

photo: IKEA

My experience with this: I had a lot of objects that I considered valuable and wanted to keep for a future special occasion (I didn’t know what that might be or when it might happen but I was taught as a child to always be prepared: unexpected guests, special unexpected event, etc). As the years passed I discovered I never used any of them. I only used the objects that I would not cry after if they broke or were scratched. So one day, I just cleaned the “special ones” of dust and started using some of them. Some of them I gave away or sold. Some I still keep and will have to evaluate their usefulness again. I discovered things I didn’t even knew I had anymore and made more space in the house. Yey moment! 🙂

6. BE PRESENT EVEN IN THE LEAST IMPORTANT ACTIVITIES

It’s worth it to be 100% involved even in the most unimportant things we need to do. Focus on what we you doing, even if you are just listening to music or doing a routine task. When we live in the present we don’t feel so tired and bored.

We can make special even the most mundane activities:  eating, carrying a conversation or cleaning the house. Life is a matter of conscience. It is in our power to make the universe around us better for us. Living a better life is the result of habit, and rituals have a very important place here. If we offer  undivided attention to our daily routines we will be more satisfied and at peace with ourselves. Don’t do more than one thing at once.

I still have trouble focusing on only one thing at a time – I’m used to have my mind divided between 2-3 tasks.  But when I put my focus on only one item until completion I managed to do more of the things I really needed to do and less of the lower priority ones. I started to unconsciously prioritize my tasks better. The problem I had with doing more things at a time was that I didn’t have a feeling of satisfaction when finishing something and also felt bored, tired and that there was so much more to do that I was overwhelmed. All this even though I actually did manage to complete a lot of things.

7. STRESS, ANXIETY, SADNESS, FEAR SHORTEN YOUR LIFE

relax

photo taken by my friend Radu

Stress, anxiety, anger, sadness, fear are your worst enemies. Get used to let all these emotions go, like they were not able to touch you – this way you can keep your vital resources intact. This trick is more efficient than any face cream. To remain beautiful try as much as possible to have a detached attitude and don’t let yourself be affected by what happens around you.

8. TAKING CARE OF YOUR BODY SHOULD NOT BE NEGLECTED IN FAVOR OF GIVING YOUR FULL ATTENTION TO OTHERS

If you don’t take care of your body you will become its victim. Your body is your home. Taking care of your body should not be neglected in favor of giving your full attention to the people around you. Only when we love our body we can really give our best to others.

Nobody likes to see a poorly maintained house. The same principle also applies to a person. It is our duty to keep our body clean and well taken care of. If you respect some basic rules and don’t abuse it, you will have charm even if mother nature was not very generous. Beauty is not always something we are born with – many times it is something we need to discipline ourselves to achieve.

My experience here: I had a lot of issues myself during the years with loosing weight: Loose weight by better combining the food you eat

9. ON EATING BETTER FOR LIVING LONGER

Processed and low quality food brings low energy, more visits to the doctor and more medicines and all this cost a fortune. Results at work get less good, the mind is less clear, career and life in general are less fulfilling. Too much food makes the body do a constant effort to digest and assimilate. Toxins that are not eliminated can cause colds, arthritis, stress, sclerosis and cancer…

My 2 cents here: I’ve had my own share of fast food time, extra weight time, smoking and drinking. I still do some occasional excesses but manage to bounce to healthier lifestyle after 1-2 days of not so healthy habits.

I lost weight, improved my skin and my mind clarity by better combining the food I was eating. You can find how I did it here: Loose weight by better combining the food you eat

 

I hope this has been useful to you:). Please give me a comment on what else you did to simplify your life. Thanks so much for reading. Hug 🙂

Until next time

XOXO

Adina

PS: You can find Dominique Loreau’s book on Amazon, Kobo or in the book shops. If you live in Romania and are interested in a Romanian translation you can find the book at most book shops around the country.

Ne puteti urmari pe:
2

3 effective budgeting tips to save more money each month

radu

After giving birth to my son Levi, I felt more and more that even though I didn’t do too much shopping or made much savings, my money just…well kinda mysteriously disappeared.

I believe it’s a feeling most of the people have, but especially the ones having children. And well… it’s terribly frustrating.

As I didn’t want to give up all the things I like, I started looking for ways to better manage my money. I need to mention: I’m the laziest person I know when it comes to things I don’t like or don’t have to really but really have to do.

This meant I had to search for something that was simple, effective and resonate me and the things I like to do.

So I just started by laying down a list of stuff I would (in theory) like to do. (Almost) everything that crossed my mind as a solution. I came back to it a couple of days later, took a deep breath and started thinking: Ok… now, knowing me, which of those things I would actually put in practice in reality?

It turned out that many ideas SOUNDED good or very good, but the truth was that they didn’t resonate with my way of being. Or were things that I would never ever find the energy or time or will (the little that’s left of it) to make them happening.

So I crossed them from my list. And crossed again and again until I remained with only the three items below that sounded true to me: keep track of your expenses, increase your value, be persistent in your actions.

So let me tell my thoughts on each one:

1. Keep track of your expenses

The first step to get in charge of your finances is knowing where your money go each month. I had the surprise to see after doing this little exercise that I was spending much, much more money than I initially thought I did. 😐

I also noticed I was spending a lot of money on things I didn’t really need, but bought anyway (marketing victim anyone?) So what to do?

I created an excel file (you can use the same or just any app that helps tracking finances – for me after testing several of apps, the plain old excel was the best) and I created a sheet for each month. Then, inside the sheet, I’d put the day, and list below all expenses made that day. At the end of the month I’ll just create a filter a see how much I’ve spent on each of my categories: food, Levi, home expenses, personal development, beauty, clothing, outings, travel, unexpected payments.

This gave me a great (and also kinda uncomfortable) vision of my expenses each month. It’s scary each time you draw the line and make the math for the last 30 days. And it’s also uncomfortable to put every little something you buy in the excel.

For example, I noticed I generally spend most money on food, Levi and going out.

What are your biggest expenses?

If you would like to put in place a money tracking system like mine, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll try to help you get started. Taking on this challenge it’s totally worth it: You’ll see where you spend most, where you could spend less and how much money you actually need to survive. It’s one of the first steps to financial independence in my opinion.

2. Increase your value

The first step above helps you create a financial discipline. With better money tracking you should be able to have more for the things that you need and like. But as we will always have some bills to pay, having  more money also means to increase your value to be able to push those financial limits.

Increasing your value means to me learning new things and improving your knowledge in some areas. But what should you learn? Not every knowledge you obtain is knowledge that you can monetize. So what would actually bring more money? A few examples:

  • Look for ways to better do your job and put them in practice so you could qualify for a raise. Then ask for the raise.
  • Look for a better position in your company and try learning the necessary skills to get there
  • Try looking for a better position outside your company – going to interviews shows you what people are looking for and what you could learn to be better paid
  • Start blogging about your passion – there are a lot of people out there that can sustain themselves through blogging
  • Meet with people. People bring with them new opportunities to do business
  • Read, read and read some more. Be connected to what is happening in this world and to the domains where you want to earn more money from. Knowledge is power – always true.

I like to sign up for feeds on the subjects I’m interested in so whenever I have a free moment I go check what’s new. My favorite is bloglovin. I choose my interests and I receive news daily from blogs that write about subjects I want to hear about.

Also, I have started learning french (1 hour a week because of lack of time). It’s not much, but it’s a little something that in time will add up to a bigger something. I am also reading each day on ways to improve my blogging knowledge, because my plan is to be able to earn money from it in the future. I do that every time I have a little break. But it adds up to an hour or two (made up from 5 minutes now, 10 minutes later, and so on).

Just like you I don’t have much time. Most days I feel I have no time. But as long as each day or week I know with at least 10 minutes more things than I did the day before, it’s the step forward to meeting my goals.

3. Be persistent in your actions

After you’ve chosen a thing or two to improve on, even if you have only 5/10 minute a day, or every 2 days, don’t stop. The first thing to succeed in something is to start. The second thing is to not stop. Don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t do what you planned sometimes or several times. Just don’t stop. Whenever you can, continue where you left and keep going.

If you put 10 minutes a day into something…in 7 days you will have put an hour and a half

In a month it would be like 6 hours (like…almost a working day)

In two months it might be about 10 hours

In 6 months that would be about 3 whole days you would have spend doing your thing.

When you look at it this way, it changes your perspective a bit 🙂

Persistence always pays off. Wink 🙂

 

You can also check:  Heaven is for real

Ne puteti urmari pe:
2

How to use smart reminders to stay organized

My favorite way to have access to and read about the subjects I’m interested in is to subscribe to newsletters from people that make it their job to be great in different areas of expertise.

Of one the projects I’m following with great interest for equally great advice is Get Organized Wizard

I’m periodically receiving by e-mail suggestions of how to be better organized: an area that is always challenging to me given that on a daily basis there is so much to do and so little time.

So a few days ago I received an e-mail on how to use smart reminders to get organized (the title of the blog is the title of their actual advice session).

So I’ll take the opportunity to share its content with you:

Hello,

If your memory fails you constantly there are a few tricks you can do to help you be better organized. We call them, smart reminders.

Here are some examples of smart reminders that will help you to be prompted at the right time!
* Don’t want to forget your water bottle when you go to the gym, but right now the dishwasher’s running? Turn your gym bag upside down.
* Gotta take something with you? Leave it in front of the door.
* Several calls to make? Put the callee names on post-its and pop them on the phone.
* Keep forgetting to use your gift certificate? Put it in your wallet – in front of your credit card or cash.
* Wan’t to stop night-time snacking? Put those motivating photos right on the fridge/pantry door.

Until next week, stay happy and organized!

It sounds so simple but yet so efficient. I’ll start trying this and let you know how it turns out. In the meantime, could you please share what other ideas you use so you keep yourself on track with your busy schedule?

If you liked their approach and with to receive similar suggestions, you can subscribe to their newsletter by visiting the page Get Organized Wizard

Notes:

The title of this post and the content of the e-mail belong to Get Organized Wizard and were not altered by me
The picture was found via Pinterest
This post is not sponsored

PS: 10 really cool ads that stick with you

Ne puteti urmari pe:
2

10 really cool ads that stick with you

Are you an ads addict? I know I am. I like most the ones in the magazines I read.

Least…the ones on TV, because I find them more invasive – they interrupt whatever you are watching, you can’t avoid them unless you change the channel and they are on repeat quite a lot.

There are some that are really smart and catchy but most of them…not so much.

I’ve found via Pinterest some very original and disturbing ads people chose to promote their message. Cool ideas indeed!

I just couldn’t stop laughing when I found this one. Priceless! 😀

 

Simple but effective

 

I like the optical illusion created here. Wraps the new product very nicely

 

I found a lot of strong, even shocking ads against smoking. The visual game played by this one is the best for me so far

 

Isn’t this the best way to you the already existent decor? 🙂 I would say heck yes!

 

Simply genius 🙂

 

This one really sends some chills down my spine. Belt up!

 

I like it a lot that campaigns against drinking and driving got more creative and went beyond just telling the people you shouldn’t do so and so. This kind of visuals stick so much better.

 

Fireworks? No! Pasta? Yes! Nice one Barilla!

Note: All pictures listed above have been found via Pinterest. You can see all the awesome stuff I found via Pinterest by following by boards here:

Ne puteti urmari pe:
2

10 Posts that inspired me last year

Every year I make some time to go through all the stuff I’ve saved during the 12 months that passed, make some cleaning through them, delete the things that don’t really represent my way of thinking anymore and re-read the inspiring ones. I’ve saved stuff coming from very different domains: from things that might inspire me in my work, to travel destinations or how to better understand the people around me.

1)STOP DREAMING AND START DOING

Excerpt: “Want to know what happens to people who spend their whole lives dreaming about fame and fortune, reading about others’ success and accomplishments, and following a who’s who of the influential elite in the hope that some of their magic will rub off them? Not a whole lot. Dreaming, reading, and following will get you nowhere. The only way to achieve any of that stuff is by doing.” True, true and true again.

2)HOW TO TALK TO KIDS ABOUT DEATH

I read this multiple times and there are so many things that are worth mentioning here that I couldn’t find only a brief sneak peak to share. If you have small kiddos, this is a sad but useful read.

3)100 TRIPS EVERYONE SHOULD TAKE IN THEIR LIFETIME

This wow list of location makes me start budget planning and start searching for cheap plane ticket flights. Sigh…

4)THE ULTIMATE HANGOVER CURING FOODS

For those moments we all have from time to time 🙂

5)ACCORDING TO THESE ASTROLOGICAL PREDICTIONS, 2016 IS GOING TO BE A VERY GOOD YEAR!

I don’t normally belive in horoscopes but it lifts my spirits when people tell me good things will happen in the future for me, that I’m gonna suceed at what I’m working on, that I’m gonna be even more loved and cherised. It brings positive motivation – and this is something everyone needs once in a while. Whenever I read a horoscope telling me bad stuff, I go search for another one with a nicer vibe :). You should try it too!

6)18 OF THE MOST AWESOME INVENTIONS WHICH APPEARED THIS YEAR

All of them are pretty awesome but I totally loved the chip which stops you from slouching. Added to my wishlist!

7)20 AWESOME DESIGN INNOVATIONS THAT CAPTIVATED US IN 2015

When I read this kind of articles I feel like I’m already living in the future. And it’s a very nice feeling to have. I love how new discoveries help us improve the quality of life in such ways that I sometimes couldn’t even imagine. I can’t wait to hear that we’ll be able to save our memories when we get old and insert them in a healthier body after we die. Kinda SF? 🙂 Maybe, but it’s worth a thought.

8)3 CREATIVE WAYS TO JUMPSTART YOUR BUSINESS WITH A BLOG IN 2016

One of the reasons I started blogging was to get better at communicating a message to people I don’t know which is useful and catchy. An except from this article illustrates this perfectly: “If I want to learn more about a given subject in a week than I could in a year, all I have to do is write a blog post. And then look at the comments. I’m not doing it just for the story or to get attention. I’m doing it for the takeaway.” Blogging is a catalyst for learning. Blogging provides you the opportunity to research a topic, think critically to condense your research and thoughts into an actionable takeaway, and then make that takeaway available internally for colleagues or externally for customers.”

9)WHY I’M TEACHING MY DAUGHTER TO PROGRAM

This is one of the things I am thinking of a lot lately. I think that in let’s say 15 years being technology fluent will be as important as being able to speak English (if you live like I do in a country where English is not the native language). Since we depend more and more on technology in our everyday life, it makes total sense to try to have some understanding of it. This article is worth taking a look.

10) 5 THINGS TO SAY INSTEAD OF SORRY

I find this article very useful especially for women: We (me included) tend to always apologize about everything: even when we have nothing to apologize for. It’s good thing to own your mistakes when the situation happens, however it is not so ok to use the S word as a way too often in your communication with others. Because when you apologize all the time you leave the impression that you act like you make mistakes all the time.

PS: 3 effective budgeting tips to save more money each month

Ne puteti urmari pe:
2

Point of view

 

 

 

A little while ago I’ve been to a 4-day course at my chosen birthing center Medlife where medical staff came to teach future parents the ABCs of taking care of a little human. Personally, I didn’t find the courses much enlightening or the staff very well prepared with useful information and wouldn’t recommend it if you are looking for courses of this kind.
Maybe they will improve this area in the future, but for present time I also tested the courses provided by Crucea Alba which I found much more closer to my informational and emotional  needs.

One moment I could not forget, or apparently get over was when the nutrition teacher brought up one things I’ve heard a lot of people around me saying to pregnant women or women with very little kids (Approximate reproduction): “I am sorry to tell you this, but you need to not to do and eat this and this and this anymore (insert half hour long list). Now that you need to take care of the little one inside you don’t matter anymore, he or she does. The only thing that is important now is the welfare of your newborn, etc, etc”

I perfectly agree that once a woman become pregnant she needs to take as much care as possible of herself in order to give her child the best and healthiest start in life possible. Nothing more true.

But I also know that this doesn’t come easy for everybody. Personally I miss a lot my old lifestyle, foods, vices and all. Lifestyle which needed a hell of a lot of adjustments which still don’t come easy to me even after 7 months of pregnancy.
Feeling this way does not mean I don’t do the needed changes and requirements anyway, or that I think less lovingly about the little man growing inside.

So while I totally believe that the lady there had the best intentions at heart for the mother and baby and provided her advice without meaning any harm, I felt totally depressed after leaving the center.

I don’t know about you, but personally I don’t like to think of myself as a walking human incubator, or a person who lost her right to matter once she got pregnant. I also believe that nobody, woman or man deserves to be told they as a person and their needs don’t matter anymore. Especially during one of the most demanding periods of one’s life.

I totally agree all those things need to be done, no argument there. But I also think that the way the information is presented makes a whole of a lot of difference on whether a person will be able to cope and find motivation or will get into a depression.

So having encountered this way too many times, I’d like to see more doctors wrapping their advice and lessons in a way that targets not only having a perfectly healthy body to produce children but also a healthy mind to be able to adjust to the changes happening in the new course of life.

I’d like to hear them telling women that they are important, that what they feel, need and crave is important, that being able to find joy in new things might mean being referred to a course of therapy to help obtain those targets.

I’d also love to hear your opinions on this. Have you been in the same situation? How did you handle it? How do you think things could be different?

Thanks you all for taking the time to read my thoughts and see you again soon!

Ne puteti urmari pe:
2