Updated: Dec 22, 2020
College, friends, family, partners, LIFE!
Those are some of the things that we invest our time, emotions and energy on, but what about ourselves, ladies?
Are we investing enough time, love and energy on ourselves as much as we are on the things and people around us?
Well, after focusing too much on pleasing people for too long, I’m just super glad that I decided to focus more on myself and invest more of what I was on people on myself.
But isn’t focusing on yourself selfish, Nicole?
Investing in your well-being is loving yourself, it’s nurturing your growth, it’s SELF-LOVE.
And this is how a young woman like yourself can invest in herself:
I’m not saying that you have to go to college or any higher education institution to educate yourself. I mean go out of your way to learn something that really matters to you.
You can take online courses on platforms such as Udemy and Skillshare, read a bunch of books that touch what inspires your or just watch a bunch of YouTube videos that will help you get where you need to get.
Just don’t spend too much time on YouTube.
Generally speaking, clutter is just a bunch of things lying around in an untidy way. Things that need to be organised. Things like:
Your digital life
I have lots of apps on my phone but I had way more before I considered decluttering my digital life.
You see, when you have too much digital clutter in your life, you tend to get worn out, your mind gets disturbed a lot of times and it’s just a freaking mess.
Sometimes you don’t even need all of those apps on your phone or laptop.
I didn’t really need Twitter so I got rid of it, same with Quora and a planner app. I have a built-in app for that.
When I say digitally declutter your life, I also mean get rid of all those newsletters you keep archiving or ignoring.
Are you really happy with having a trillion email notifications on your phone or a bazillion emails that need to be read?
I know I hate it when I have more than 20 emails that need to be read and it gets frustrating when I have to be archiving things all the time.
So, I cut those newsletters out of my life.
Come to think of it, I’m gonna do just that after I’m done with this.
Also, turn those damn notifications off!
You don’t need to know when anyone has posted something every time they do so. It will just get you anxious and more prone to distractions due to always ditching things to attend to your precious notifications.
So, turn them off!
And speaking of social media, do you really need to be following all of those people or are you just doing it because you feel obligated to?
I used to follow a lot of people, especially celebrities until I decided that I was better off looking after my life than the ones of those who I didn’t really know, or truly cared about, nor did they know me.
I stopped following lots of celebrities and that helped my mental state a lot. I was less worried about what anyone was up to, less affected by their glamorous life and more accepting of mine.
Plus, I started to actually see posts from people that really mattered to me.
Watch out for all the thoughts that you let stay rent-free in your head. They might actually do you more damage than you thought they could.
A way of organising your thoughts in a way that they won’t disturb your mental state, you should write them out on a journal or notebook. It will help you to know what you have been thinking about then on how to figure out why you have such thoughts.
It’s important to know what you have been constantly thinking about to unlock the motivators behind those thoughts that seem to wear you down and have a grip on your peace of mind.
Sometimes, I find myself thinking about dark stuff, violent stuff that would prolly freak out my mum, a psychologist or anyone really.
When I have those thoughts, I feel guilty and ask myself why I keep going back to such thoughts and try to figure a way of breaking the patterns, when I find them.
Sometimes, when I get really pissed, I tend to go back to those thoughts so I find it very helpful when I shift them to something more gentle when I focus on calming myself when I pray. . . When I pretty much just shut those thoughts off.
The thing is, some thoughts just take up too much space in your mind when other beautiful could be there, making you happy instead of guilty, joyful instead of tired.
So, I say get rid of thoughts of guilt, envy, anger, shame and everything bad that threatens your happiness. It probably won’t be easy, dark stuff are quite some fighters, but it won’t be hard.
Just keep getting rid of them and focus on nurturing your mind with awesome thoughts — gentle thoughts — and amazing memories.
Messy space, messy mind.
I hate too much stuff in one place, mess in all places and it really ticks me when my room is cluttered.
When I see too many things in a place, my heart drops and what I want to do is clean up the place, even if it’s not mine. Well, at least most of the times.
A messy house can add up to a lot of stress in your life and require you to invest too much energy and time in dealing with it.
To stop hurting your eyes and your messing up your brain, look around you and ask yourself: What is important to stay and what is just taking up space?
Do you need all those stuffed animals on your bed?
Do you even wear all those shoes in your closet?
When was the last time you even read that book or even touched it?
Get rid of the things that are just taking up space in your house and feel your mind clearing up and thanking you for finally getting rid of the trash.
Reduce your commitments and relationships
A lot of times, our lives are too cluttered with all the things we need to do at home, work, school, in church and even our relationships that we don’t even have the time or energy to take care of ourselves.
If you feel like that, I say cut down some commitments.
Write all your commitments and really see which ones add value and bring you joy the most. This can be overwhelming and stressful, it might even hurt to know that you have been wasting your life on things that don’t even matter to you, but do it anyway.
Do you really need to go to the gym twice a day?
Does it bring you joy to go out every weekend?
No? Cut it out then.
Also, cut out some relationships.
Whoa, that’s too harsh Nicole.
Nope, it really isn’t.
Sometimes we just keep people around because we are used to them being around us and not because we need it or want it.
You need to understand that many people will come and go, and others will just stay to mess up your life so bad you will wish you would have cut them off your life a long time ago.
This might happen with family members.
Yes, just because that aunt changed your diapers when you were a toddler doesn’t mean that you have to keep her around even when she keeps insisting on manipulating you.
That cousin that used to be so close to you needs to be cut off if she keeps bullying you all the time.
That best friend of yours that keeps spreading rumours about you needs to be cut off as well.
Just because you have known them for centuries doesn’t mean that you have to keep them around, especially when they keep damaging your inner peace.
I learnt that the hard way and even confronted some of my family members on the reasons why they shouldn’t be surprised if I just keep myself away from them.
The truth hurts, reality sometimes does as well, but it needs to come out.
I’ve had lots of bad habits and I’m still working on killing a few.
But as James Clear said in this post, bad habits can’t be killed but replaced with good ones, and I agree with him.
I have this bad habit of waking up and staying a few minutes * cough * hours * cough * in bed instead of waking up and getting my daily goals achieved.
What happens after I lazy out in bed for hours?
I get all my priorities cramped and my to-dos bunched together to a point that gets a bit too overwhelming for my liking and I end up postponing.
Now, I’m fighting that habit with a good one: Forcing myself out of bed no more than 30 minutes after waking up.
Safe to say that it’s a real fight over here but I have my victories and my defeats, but the best part is that I’m progressing. I’m replacing the bad habit.
For more depth (ocean type of depth) on breaking bad habits, I suggest you read this article by James Clear and get your game on.
Mind your finances
Both my parents are die-hard economists and being their child, I was drowned in many lessons about financial education.
They gave me books, my father made us (my sister and I) listen to financial education lessons on the radio, and they would give us budgets so that we knew how to manage our finances.
Yeah, I’m like a pro in finances now. . . Not!
Even though I know how to handle my finances pretty well, I’ve got to admit that I still struggle with a few things here and there. I’ve got the fixed costs alright, I guess, but then come those nasty little urges to buy that course I know I won’t even need right now and I decide to sacrifice some money for it.
Yeah, bad move. Don’t do that.
Don’t you ever sacrifice your fixed costs money for something spontaneous, unless (and that’s a big unless) it’s for something of utmost importance and urgency.
Being a varsity student and all of that, there are tempting things out there trying to get me and I’ve fallen for their tricks far too many times.
Instead of cooking, because I was lazy, I would buy food a lot. Not only was it not that healthy at all, but it also began to be less affordable because I was constantly buying it.
You know, when something is so cheap that you feel you can afford it and then you buy it a lot of times, become addicted to it, and then you can no longer afford it because you spent all your bloody money on it?
Yeah, it’s pretty darn awful.
So, I beg you to learn how to manage your finances. I’m doing better now and I want you to do it as well.
Don’t fall for cheap amazon deals, nor does glamours discount stuff that you don’t even need.
If you want to throw money at something, at least be an investment or something like that. Invest in something that will bring you passive income
University is a fine time of your life to start investing and even though I’m more into investing in new skills that will help me work for myself, I have a friend of mine who just loves investing (loves money) and he has tried so many things.
Investing when young is really advantageous because it means that you will be able to make mistakes earlier and learn from them earlier than those who started in their 30s or more.
If you want to learn how to invest in yourself a college student, I suggest you read this article.
Look after your health
Health problems, even those tiny ones, can interfere with how we live our lives and let’s face it, we are too young to be wasting our lives on bad health habits.
I’m just eighteen and if I don’t focus on staying healthy, I can bet that 40yrs Nicole is going to punch herself for sleeping on her health,
Poor health habits can add stress and overwhelm into your life, and that’s why you need to focus on taking care of your health.
And when I say health, I mean emotional, physical and mental health.
There are a lot of health professionals out there, and blogs too, that can help you figure out how to better take care of your health, and I think that this post will help you a bit.
Don’t rush yourself
Just because you see some 18 years old influencers or somebodies making 1 million dollars a year, going to exotic destinations and living an extravagant life, doesn’t mean that you have to be doing the same at the same age.
Life is not a bloody race where you are required to have everything sorted out at a certain age or something, or need to be at the same level as everyone else.
Do you know how depressed I would be if I compared myself to a bunch of younger artists who have a quite better skill set than myself?
I understand that they have worked their way to hone those skills and that just because we are of the same age, doesn’t mean that we should be doing the same things, much less with the same intensity.
Social media tends to rush people, making you feel like you should be a billionaire like Kylie by the age of 19 or a six-figures entrepreneur by the age of 21.
It doesn’t work like that and if you try rushing yourself to catch up with others, you will go freaking nuts and feel so demotivated you might be a victim of depression and lot, and LOTS, of stress.
Focus on your own pace and be happy with it. Learn to walk before you can run and you will see how simpler things will appear.