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Hygge vs. Minimalism – What is best for me?

There’s so much buzz around Hygge and Minimalism. They both have beautiful qualities and benefits but which is best for me? What’s the difference between them?

Hygge

Hygge is a danish word used when acknowledging a feeling or a moment as cozy, charming and special. It’s the art of creating joy and comfort in one’s life. Embracing hygge is about creating a warm and cozy lifestyle. It promotes appreciation, a certain simplicity and about not only recognizing the present moment but also enjoying it. Think the quote, “Relish in the moment,” but up a few notches.

Minimalism

Minimalism is about living with less, living with the essentials, only the things that bring you joy. It teaches you to remove distractions from your life so that you can live your life with full intentions. Quoted from Joshua Becker from Becoming Minimalist “minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we value most and the removal of everything that distracts us from it.” Through minimalism you can discover clarity and freedom.

So which is best for me? I see value in both lifestyles. I see a sense of simplicity in both. I’ve been trying to work towards minimalism for a little over a year now and have really been struggling with it. Although I am able to embrace some of the thought patterns of minimalism I find that I struggle with limiting the amount of items that bring me joy. I find joy in so many things and in so many areas of my life. As an eclectic individual I have several hobbies and many interests creating a bit of a stock up sometimes. I do believe in removing the clutter and the chaos and I believe in utmost organization because I find I function better in a clearer, cleaner environment but as much as I respect the minimalistic lifestyle I’m not sure it fits who I am purely. I find myself at home looking toward hygge. Cozy is one of my top five favorite words. I am finding that I am falling in love with all things hygge. I don’t want to abandon all the values of minimalism but I think a more honest path to my true self is to build my home and my life with a hygge mindset. Looking back, I’m glad I took an attempt at minimalism and I grew as a person and learned a lot about how I work in the world during my journey but as we grow we also shift so here’s to 2018 learning all about hygge. <3 

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A Day in My Life – Weekend Bliss & Tasks

Get To Know Your Blogger

What’s a day in my life like? Well I make sure I have at least a little adventure in each day. I focus on finding beauty and peace in each of my days. I make sure to do at least three things to help me get closer to my goals. I include some self-care practices into every day. And I like to have a little fun each day.

This post may contain affiliate links. For more information please reference my disclosure page. All opinions are my own. 

Before everyone woke up, I was able to get some quiet time at the kitchen table with my planner. I used this time to work on some editorial planning for my blog while I drank my morning cup of tea. 

Well the kiddo is up…the interesting sound effects that are coming from the living room…I let my son play some video games in the morning while I worked on wrapping up some chores.

The pups take a late morning nap while I finish putting my clean clothes away. 

Finding inspiration and peace in watering my lemon tree plant. 

 

Trying out our crafty sides, my son and I made a sun-melted candle…it wasn’t too hot today though so it hasn’t melted yet but we’re looking forward to a hot day to see the finished project! 

Checked off my to-do list making all natural dog shampoo and soap for a local dog shop. 

Took a few minutes to add some ideas/blog posts to my editorial calendar…yeah I pretty much keep my computer open all day for intermittent tasks…not the best habit but it’s working for me for now. 

Post bath time pic of the pups, washed up with all natural doggie shampoo with lemon and lavender pure essential oils. 

In my thirties and I had never done the Diet Coke & Mentos Experiement. Well I can check that off my bucket list now! You can see a snippet of the go-down on YouTube here

Celebrating Memorial Day with a picnic food dinner. Hamburgers, Hotdogs, Homemade Pickles, Pasta Salad, and more, yum! 

Cookie Cake is my favorite (aside Chocolate Torte). I eat (several) small pieces to psych myself into believing I’m not actually eating almost the whole thing. 

Starting a Tarot Card Journaling Challenge this week – I’ll pull a card each day and write how it is relevant to my life and what my intentions are after considering my reading. Tarot Card Reading is a great way to pursue intuition reading and reflection. 

Back to some blogging tasks – adding tasks to my CoSchedule calender…which I am finding a blessing of a service for organizing and managing my blog. 

Some evening Yoga & Meditation to relax and decompress from the day. Shameless plug – I absolutely love the stuff I get from ProSource and love their prices too – if you’re a yogi, or even an all around fitness enthusiast, this place is worth checking out. 

Winding down with a cup of hot tea (I easily drink 5 cups of tea a day) and a movie with the fam. 

How to Stay Motivated & My Top TED Talks for Motivation

Sometimes I need a little help getting motivated, a little kick in the butt to get back to tasks. I have found TED Talks to be extremely inspiring and motivating. They speak truth, they speak action, they speak change. A key way to keep motivated to work towards your goals is to surround yourself with motivation and positive thoughts of change.

  1. Surround yourself with positive, motivated people.
  2. Post motivational quotes at your desk, in your planner, and in your room.
  3. Read an affirmation every morning.
  4. Listen to music while you work or clean.
  5. Read motivational books and listen to motivational podcasts.

My Top TED Talks for when I Need Motivation

  1. The Art of Being Yourself by Caroline McHugh
  2. How to Stop Screwing Yourself Over by Mel Robbins
  3. The Power of Vulnerability by Brene’ Brown
  4. The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong by Amy Morin
  5. Your Elusive Creative Genius by Elizabeth Gilbert
  6. Lessons from the Mental Hospital by Glennon Doyle Melton
  7. Listening to Shame by Brene’ Brown
  8. The Power of Introverts by Susan Cain

An Awesome Day: Sunday Funday : Brunch, Errands, & Shopping

Sundays are my favorite day of the week. Especially when I get to spend it with my Ma. Tackling some errands, a wonderful Sunday Brunch, and even snuck a little shopping in there…and it was National Hat Day! Not tooting my horn, but a lucky day it was since I found my wide brimmed hat that actually fits my head and doesn’t swallow me whole (I’ve only been searching for over a year!). 

Started the day out a little slow but on a wonderfully positive note. I love mornings that I don’t have to push myself out of bed! Cooked some scrambled eggs for my ma, myself, and my pup – yes I cook for my dog. C’mon cut me some slack she has a gluten allergy so that rules out some stuff for her…and well she’s my princess! Checked off some blog page updates off my to-do list and then got ready to head out for some errands – today was a #selfcaresunday so I wiggled in a quick hair mask treatment while I was getting ready. 

I was so excited to pick up my computer from The Geek Squad today – finally able to use my laptop efficiently again – woohoo! If you’re a blogger you definitely know this excitement! And then we were off to a Sunday Brunch – okay we added this one into the day…which meant a mimosa! We tried a restaurant called Susquehanna Harvest Season Grill – this was definitely added to our favorites list! The restaurant was farm to table and mostly organic which we don’t have too much of around here. The menu was amazing! I’m no foodie blogger but this meal was one to be noted. I tried a grapefruit juice mimosa – yum! A little sour for my ma but I was all over it. We started off with a local farms cheese board with an array of wonderful cheeses, candied nuts, an orange jam, a plum jam, and raw honey. For entrees we devoured fish dishes: I went with Artic Char and my ma went with Cedar Salmon, both came with fresh in-season vegetables. Oh my goodness and then the desserts. I love that they came in mini glasses so we could try a bunch! 

And then off for a little shopping. I am working on trying to be more mindful in my shopping…I think I did okayish, better than other days at least. Got my hat, which happened to be 50% off the sale price woot! woot! and then grabbed some pants and stockings for work, okay and some jewelry, and a tank…but all with the idea that they are for work, right? And they were all on sale! Listen to me making my excuses, I just really love clothes and that’s just that. Picked up my new brush pot from Color Me Mine that I painted at last weekend’s adventures with my son and some organic toiletries I needed to replace…2017 is also my year to transform all of my beauty products to organic/natural products. 

It was a good day, not a usual #sundaydinner post but a wonderful day. Wrapped up the evening with a facial (when I say facial, I mean slab on the at-home stuff) and an episode of BlindSpot and now I’m curled up (on my fixed laptop yay!) watching Black Mirror on Netflix catching up on some blog stuff. 

I hope all of you had a wonderful Sunday Funday too!!! 

Just me blabbing about my day <3

How To Keep Joy In Your Life

My ex says to me, “You just want to go and be seen all the time.” His comment really irked me. It made me feel as if he was implying I was a show-off which doesn’t really fit my personality or my values and it bugged me. The comment stuck with me, it kept nagging at me and I kept analyzing it over and over. Driving home from the grocery store, laying down to sleep at night – I’d think of it. Such a simple comment that had become ever-so annoying to me, sticking in my mind. Last night it hit me, he was right – in a way.

I do want to be seen, and I want to be recognized not because I’m proud but because I eagerly want to be a part of this world. We should all want that, being together brings us joy. We were created to connect and to unite and to help each other. And yeah, I want a part in that, a chance to be part of something great, a part of our great humanity. But to understand that I had to change my perspective of his comment. After thinking that out I made a list of my rules for keeping joy in my life around the thought of how we should be living in this world, as part of this world, rules I live by every day. If you want to be truly joyful, you need to shine your light where ever you go, let that bright ray of sunshine from in you fall upon the world! 

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#sundaydinner & 2017 Goals

I spent the day by myself but not alone…kept tucked away at home most of the day with my pup but it was not short of anything but an amazing day. I love the New Year so much (I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before). A day spent reflecting, planning, and dreaming of reaching my goals in 2017. Sunday dinner was nothing fancy today, but still special to me. I have to be honest, I was going to hit the drive-thru at McD’s but then Perkin’s brightly lit sign yelled “eggs!” to me…I enjoyed a quiet dinner for one in a comfy booth – I went all in with the Hearty Man’s Breakfast tonight, heck why not? I’m living it up! While waiting for my food to come, I sat and read through everyone’s fun New Year’s post and came upon something so exciting I almost cried – Julie V at Hello Peaceful Mind posted 12 Secrets From Experts To Be Happy And Successful which I am so delighted to be able to be a part of! Such an awesome way to start the new year! Today was also the launch of ’31 Days To A New You’ – my 31 day healthy habits challenge and email series, my first interactive series on my blog. A great start to the year, here’s what I have in mind for 2017:

 Health: Become more fit by eating healthier and exercising regularly. Become stronger and more energized.

Finance: Build better financial stability. Pay off debt, save to buy a house in 2018, spend less.

Career: Continue to grow blog and features on blog, create a source of income from blog, launch e-boutique, keep painting and creating art, get into more shows and sell more paintings.

Bucket List: Travel more, get certifications as a Crystal Healer and as a Life Coach, finish writing and publish my novel, take dance lessons, have more adventures!

Heart, Mind, Soul: Read more, learn more, deepen my spirituality, get back to daily meditation and yoga.

 

My Angel of Strength

“Angel of Strength”

She is always here with me, walking beside me and pulling me up when I need her.

She helps me see beauty in every moment, even in painful ones.

As I get ready to enter into the New Year, I sit and think of the blessings that came out of 2016, the challenges that made me tougher, and the joys that made me see clearer, and the new beautiful friendships I have acquired.

I can feel the magic of 2017 creeping in my bones and am filled with enthusiasm to jump into the new year, a year for more growth and discovery and transformation.

“Angel of Strength”, mixed media, Paintings by LAR.

How to Tidy Up for a New Year

Christmas has come and is now on it’s way out…our thoughts turn to entering the New Year, the big 2017. Seen by many as a fresh start, a new chapter beginning. I find myself evaluating where I am in life and where I want to go in the upcoming year, what I need to do to get there, and of thoughts of kicking off with a fresh, new start. I start looking for ways to get things in order for the New Year.

I reached out to my pal Ilka for some tips on preparing for the New Year. She spoke of all the things we accumulate in a year’s time. Though we may not intend to, with our busy everyday lives things get stacked, pushed to the back, and collected. I take a moment just to look around and even though I am one that tries to do a clean-out each month, I can see the stacks of “go-through” stuff still sitting, the box of make-up I’ve been meaning to purge, and knick-knacks and books that have made their way into already filled shelves, so I’m off with Ilka’s tips in hand to do a quick New Year’s tidy-up this week…making room for my Christmas Gifts and new adventures and memories in the upcoming year. 

Here is Ilka’s end-of-the-year tidy up task list for getting ready for the New Year! 

Decluttering At The End Of The Year:

I like my home to be neat and clutter free. But over a year even my house piles up some stuff I actually don’t need in my life or things that are nearly used up. So for a fresh start in a new year, I like to use up and sort out all the thing I don’t need any more and begin the new year with a bare surface.

In these blog post, I share with you, my top tips and categories to declutter for the new year.

Beauty and skin- care

As we all know, beauty and skin-care products are most times only durable for a year or two. So we should have a good sort out and use up every once in awhile. I personally like to check my bathroom staples twice a year. The first time is at the beginning of summer and the second time is just at the end of the year. I make sure nothing broke, dirty or unloved stays with me any longer.

I also use the time to stock up my inventory. Toothpaste, body butter, shower gel etc.

Home

My home is quite minimalistic but over a year I collect a few thing which are not meant to be in my home. For example, stacks of magazines, cloth (that either are not in season anymore or which I don’t like any longer), or bits and bobs around the house.

I also have a look in my kitchen cabinets and use up stockings, which otherwise will go bad soon or sort out goods nobody eats.

Online

Oh yes. A huge part! At the end of every year, I go through my laptop and phone and file images, documents and everything else. I also ‘tidy up’ my social media:

Sometimes I delete a few images or Tweets

Adjust new bio texts and update my profile pictures

I clear the wall on my personal facebook account (I like it to be tidy)

And this year, for the first time, I will also declutter my WordPress. Yes! There are a few posts I really not enjoy and my media center is full of pictures I never used in blog posts. So I’ll clear it out.

Life

And by life, I mean my calendar. I love planning. This year, for the first time ever, I tried to function without an actual agenda and just use the calendar on my phone and laptop. Let me tell you, it did not work for me. I need to write things down, like actually write them down, with a pencil, on paper. Haha.

So at the end of every year, I buy a planner and start to map out my year. Some things I know for sure (like birthdays, anniversary’s, holiday’s … ).

Much love, Ilka x

All About Ilka:

She is a 25-year-old with an obsession for all things related to home and self-care. On her blog, http://ilkaeliseb.com/, she also publishes articles respective to her interests in style and design. IEB is kind of a lifestyle magazine for the everyday girl. Please be sure to check her out, her blog is beautiful and incredibly inspiring! 

Follow Ilka:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ilkaeliseb/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/ilkaeliseb

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/ilkaeliseb/

Pinterest – https://de.pinterest.com/IlkaEliseB/

2017 is going to be a magical year, I can just feel it! 

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5 Powerful Steps to Reaching Your Dreams & Crushing Your Goals

As you get to know new people, you will find that we each hold our own story of tragedy and sorrow, we each have experienced challenges and trials that have helped shape us into the people we have become (or are becoming). Some stories are longer and more intense than others and some are shorter and more gentle but we each have our own. At the end of each story though, isn’t about what had happened, it’s what we chose to learn, what we chose to make of it all, what we chose to become from it. I recently met a beautiful woman through a Facebook Group named Kylie Travers, she has quite the story to tell, facing many challenges in the past several years, challenges that could have sent her spiraling down but instead she took her obstacles and used them to propel herself to a multiple international award-winning CEO, author, speaker and charity ambassador. When I reached out to her to guest post for www.dofivethingsaday.com, to share her story with all of us, she didn’t come back with a list of all of her challenges, she came back with a focus on action steps on how she became who she was meant to be. It reminded me of how strong we can be, on how if we choose to control and shape our perception then we can make anything possible. 

The past few years have been some of the worst and some of the most successful years of my life. I have gone from a homeless single mother of two to multiple international award winning CEO, author, speaker and charity ambassador, in under 4 years. During this time I also overcame Borderline Personality Disorder, started a new relationship, had paralysis issues for 7 months, a cancer scare, a few surgeries, moved across the country and helped my daughters overcome their learning disorders which were classed as extreme.

Despite facing multiple obstacles, I have a life better than anything I could ever have imagined. Instead of focusing on ‘my story’ (which if you want to know more details about, you can find on my site), I want to focus on what I did to turn my obstacles into opportunities.

1.) Have an attitude of gratitude
As hard as it is when you face issues in your life, being grateful changes your perspective. Find something to be grateful for every day. I keep a gratitude diary where I write in it 3 things I am grateful for every day. Keeping an attitude of gratitude helps maintain a more positive outlook on life, which assists in problem solving the issues you face.

A week after my daughters and I left their dad (my ex husband), we were robbed of everything in our new home, including my underwear. At first, I broke down. It felt like too much to handle with what I had already faced leaving an abusive relationship, being stalked and assaulted.

I managed to pull myself together then wrote a gratitude list outing what I could be grateful for in that situation, what lessons I could learn from it and what opportunities might come as a result of being robbed. I managed to come up with quite a few things including the fact we were not home when it happened, it was only stuff and we had insurance, I hated everything I owned because it was remnants of my marriage, now I was able to replace it with insurance money instead of having to save up my own money and replace things as I could etc. As you can see, once I got into that frame of mind it became easier.

2.) Use affirmations and positive quotes
I used to roll my eyes when people suggested it, until I found myself crumpled in a heap on the bathroom floor sobbing my eyes out and the only thing that seemed to calm me down was repeating my favorite quote “I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.” by Carl Jung. I needed to believe that was true. I needed to know that despite being at rock bottom – abused, robbed and homeless, I could change my life.

I had my favourite quotes stamped on some bracelets for my wrists. I wrote quotes that inspired me in permanent marker on my mirrors (it wipes off with window cleaner) and I kept them as screen-savers on my devices. These constant reminders helped shape my thinking.

3.) Be clear on where you want to go
I have always had goals, but in this situation I got more strategic about it. I worked out my core values, created a personal mission statement, set goals in 7 key areas of my life (family, finances, career/business, travel, health, personal development and organisation), then using those goals I create a vision board.

I would spend time every day envisioning what my life would be like, looking at my vision board and actively taking steps to get me closer to my goals. All the planning in the world will do nothing if you don’t take action. Get clear on where you want to be, write your plan and go after it with pure determination.

4.) Meditation

I allocated at least 20 minutes a day to meditation, which I still do. It relaxes you, makes it easier to think and I notice it on days I don’t meditate. I struggle, have less energy and can’t think as clear if I don’t meditate in the morning. Not all mediation is about sitting there and saying ‘Om’. Find the method that works for you and implement it into your daily routine.

5.) Take care of yourself

I allowed myself to get too busy and overwhelmed running a business, doing public speaking, rushing from event to event, taking my kids to school, therapy and extra curricular activities. I said yes to everything anyone asked me to do and in the end my body decided I couldn’t continue. One morning I was getting ready and my back seized up. I thought I had aggravated an old spinal injury and asked my very new boyfriend to take my kids to school, assuming I would be ok the next day. I was unable to walk properly for 7 months. If I stood up or spoke at an event it required nerve blockers, pain killers and resulted in 4 days in bed after the event with excruciating pain and paralysis.

During this time a test came back positive for the cancer my mother died from. After a surgery it turns out I have a rare condition that presents itself the same way and I have to have annual surgery. I had surgical treatments for my spine and the whole year was stressful. My new boyfriend was my carer and immediately a dad to my kids instead of us being able to get to know each other slowly.

By not taking care of myself, I nearly ruined us financially (he was now unable to work as he had to care for me, and I barely worked because of the pain and issues) and nearly destroyed the relationship completely. I was unable to be the mum I had been and that broke my heart, seeing my kids play and having them be sad I couldn’t do things with them anymore.

Put yourself first. Exercise, eat right, get enough sleep, ask for help when you need it, outsource the cleaning or anything else you can to free up your time. Life is too short, don’t make it harder on yourself by overwhelming yourself.

You can achieve anything you put your mind to. How have you turned obstacles into opportunities?

Bio:

Kylie Travers went from homeless single mum of two daughters because of domestic violence to multiple international award winning CEO, author, speaker, marketing specialist and charity advocate in the space of a couple of years. Through all her work she focuses on sharing practical advice on ways to make and save money, turn your obstacles into opportunities, practice gratitude, travel and create opportunities to improve your life and excel in the areas you want to.

Her areas of expertise are marketing, social media, blogging, finance and travel. Her company specialises in digital marketing with influencer programs, marketing strategies, training and consultations. Personally, Kylie likes to focus on public speaking, freelance writing or consults around finance, travel, lifestyle or blogging, along with being actively involved in charities that help end homelessness and domestic violence.

As a result, she has been the recipient of many awards, including The Plutus Foundation Service Award for 2015, Finalist Young Australian Of The Year, ACT, 2015 and winning Best International Personal Finance Blog twice, among other awards.


You can find out more about here at http://www.kylietravers.com.au

Social links: 

http://www.facebook.com/KylieTraversAus

http://www.twitter.com/KylieTravers_au

http://www.instagram.com/KylieTravers_au

 

*all images used in this post of ownership of Kylie Travers.

I Do Not Want To Be Finished…I Want To Be The Mess.

“Embrace the glorious mess that you are.” ~ Elizabeth Gilbert

Messy

I am a canvas of life, an amazing piece of art still being created, a creation that has the ability to transform into anything I can dream of each and every day. Just as paint starts in a tube and then becomes a magnificent blob of wet paint on a palette, spilling and pouring among the surface which it lays on until a paintbrush picks it up and splatters it onto the canvas, so fluid, so free – that is what I want to be. I do not want to be a complete statue in a museum, to be looked at in awe, not yet. I want to be the wet clay still being molded. I want to be the photographs still developing in the dark room. I want to be the uncompleted drawing. I want to be the ever-moving stage during the play.

Right now, I just want to be the process of the artist because when I do pass, I want to be the great masterpiece of my long, vivid life.