I honestly had a great time in college. Like the movies, I ticked off everything on the college checklist:
- Made lifelong friends
- Had amazing experiences
- Lived on my own and didn’t die in the process
- Made mistakes (tons of them)
- Go back to fourth grade and stop myself from praying to God that I wanted big boobs
- Adopted the principles of minimalism at a younger age
What is minimalism?
Minimalism is the lifestyle of removing distractions to connect with the important. Each person chooses how to define distractions, and what's important in their life.
In my life, I have removed excess stuff (clothes, household items, electronics, negativity, toxic people) to spend my energy cultivating simplicity in my health, relationships, experiences, knowledge, and creativity.
My life would be entirely different if I applied these principles in college.
Becoming Authentically me
Focusing on how I looked, what I said, and what I had meant I was never really present with the people. I was too busy trying to be cool, I probably missed out on some fantastic friendships or making other relationships better.
Tip: Fitting in is not belonging. Fitting in is molding yourself to be something your not. You will find people who love you for you as long as you stay true to you and your values.
Clutter has a way of taking up physical and mental space. Removing distractions would have allowed me to build a stronger relationship with myself and with others.
TIP: Remove distractions from your life, especially apps on your phone that do not allow you to be present. If you need help, there are even apps to assist with this! Freedom app or StayFocusd on Chrome
Clutter can accumulate in a blink of an eye. Be mindful when you buy something, and you’ll be surprised how freeing it will feel. Another bonus, moving becomes effortless.
TIP: Purge your home and belongings once a quarter and donate them to goodwill or charities
I struggled with low self-confidence and body image in college. To cope, I bought a shit-load of clothes. Fast fashion that was cheap “in style,” and never quite fit right. After two wears, it would go in the closet (more accurately the floor of my closet) where it would never stay.
For more tips check out USELESS a Scandinavian blogger who focuses on building a Capsule Wardrobe. I love her style, and she’s cute.
With a tight budget, it was easy to get a box full of Top Ramen and a 12 pack of soda to get me through the week. The poor diet impacted my health and my waistline.
TIP: Learn how to read labels and try incorporating veggies into your Top Ramen or any pasta.
Check out The Brothers Green Eats for cheap and alternative menus. Or if you do have money to spare, learn how to get the Freshest Food without Leaving the House.
In college, I had reasonable expenses like books, food, and rent. But when I got my financial aid and loans I mindlessly splurged on clothes, gadgets, and liquor. $20k in debt, I realized I probably didn't spend wisely.
TIP: Take control of your budget with Mint. The purchases you make should improve your life not cause you stress or anxiety.
College life is busy, and I never had enough time. Of course, I never spent enough time on classes. I was too busy spending time on shopping and going out. When I did clean, it took way longer because of all the crap I owned.
Tip: Time is attainable if you get rid of the things that are taking too much of your time. For example, not having a TV in your bedroom, or adopting screen-free hours during the week.
The benefits of simplifying your life are endless!
Minimalism empowers you to create a wholehearted life.
Personally, I’ve whittled down to a wardrobe that’s concise and versatile. Simplifying allows me to feel good and spend money on other things like quality food, and traveling!
My life is filled with family and most importantly more me time.
I still struggle with screen time, but I’m slowly getting better at it.
How do you see yourself simplifying? Share your thoughts in the comments below
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