It’s perfectly fine to break up with friends you’re just not that into

“Breaking up is hard to do”. But so is hanging out with someone who makes you feel awkward af. (tweet that)

Let me rephrase that. It’s not that they make you feel awkward; it’s that you feel awkward around them. They aren’t doing anything wrong, it’s just… them. Or you. Or you with them. But somehow the conversation always dies down, it gets awkward, and you dread it.

On the flip side, you have that other friend, with whom there are never ever awkward silences — but that’s because she never stops talking about herself and her problems. Not only is it an unbalanced relationship you two have, but it’s a depressing one. You walk away feeling drained, feeling like you would have rather not gone out at all.

I’ve had interactions with both of these people. And I’ve separated myself from both of them. The first one was a very kind friend, but something about our vibe together just felt awkward, so when we naturally drifted, I let it happen and made absolutely no effort to maintain the friendship.

The other, I never got that close with in the first place (you can only get so close when a relationship is one-sided.) And so I just stopped attending events where this person would be there.

Instead, I have chosen to nurture friendships with people I actually like. (tweet that)

Imagine that! Positive interactions where I come away from it feeling great, and feeling like there’s never enough time to talk about all the great things we want to share with each other. Comparing the social circle I have now to the one I had a few years ago is like night and day. Back then I felt like an outsider; I felt depressed and like I had no really fulfilling interactions in my life. Now I have an abundance of them.

“If you keep what you don’t want, you’ll never have enough room for what you do want.” (tweet that)

Feeling too guilty to end things with somebody?

Trust me, they’ll get over it. Chances are, it hasn’t been that fulfilling for them either. I doubt they’ll be completely blindsided. Plus, just don’t be a jerk about it and you can walk away guilt-free. It’s really okay. And if you still feel guilty, remember that you are not responsible for anyone else’s happiness but your own.

What decisions can you make about who you spend your time with, that will bring you happiness today?

Decluttering my life has brought me peace of mind and relief from the world around me. There’s nothing like walking into the space you created and knowing you have nothing more than what you need. I write articles to help others create that same feeling for themselves.

You’ve done well. Now enjoy.

With the new year quickly approaching, I want to remind you of a few things:

1. You’ve done well. You’ve done well this year. You’ve pushed through things, overcome some and are still working on others. But you’ve done well so give yourself some credit.

2. You’ve done a lot more than you think you have. Looking back at the year as a whole, it can feel like only a few things stand out. We easily forget all the little things we have done, which often add up the most.

3. You deserve to relax and enjoy yourself. And don’t tell yourself otherwise. Relaxation and happiness are not things we need to earn. You don’t need to reach some quota before you’re allowed to have fun. Waiting to reward yourself after you complete a goal is great, but too often we hold out until the big goal is accomplished, before letting ourselves enjoy even the tiniest rewards. Reward yourself for the small steps you’ve taken. Or just reward yourself because you’re wonderful and you deserve it, no matter what you’ve accomplished today. (See points 1 and 2.)

Relaxing and enjoying are different from splurging. Enjoy freely. Splurge occasionally. (tweet that)

4. You have the power to decide how you feel next year. How did you feel this year? What were your predominant emotions? Were you mostly stressed, happy, bored? Of course we experience a range but if one feeling stands out to you, is that feeling something you want to feel again this next year? If not, what needs to change?

5. Everything is a choice. This is something that really hit hard for me this year. I found myself committing to things because “I had to”, only to realize that I actually could have said no. “But I didn’t have a choice,” I found myself thinking. It was when I had that exact thought that I realized, “No. I completely, 100% had a choice. And I always have a choice.” And so do you.

Next year is filled with so many possibilities. Whatever limitations are coming to your mind right now, challenge them. Ask yourself if they must be so, or if you have a choice. You can make next year whatever you want it to be. For that matter, you can make the remaining days of this year whatever you want them to be.

You can.

Now enjoy.

Decluttering my life has brought me peace of mind and relief from the world around me. There’s nothing like walking into the space you created and knowing you have nothing more than what you need. I write articles to help others create that same feeling for themselves.

The speed you’re not used to

With all the holiday rush and the hundreds of things we think we need to check off our to-do lists, take a minute to read this quote from Paulo Coelho, author of The Alchemist:

paul coelhoSome people go through life like they’re in slow motion. For others, everything is a rushed blur. Most of us fall somewhere in the middle, but have days that lean to either extreme.

The holidays are the perfect time to slow down and savor every moment with family and friends, but usually the opposite gets prioritized, resulting in stress and fatigue. (tweet that)

This time of year more than ever, try and find pleasure in the speed you’re not used to. If you’re rushing more than usual, try and find joy in the experience. See if you can keep up your pace but lose the stress and the hectic state of mind. Embrace that this is your speed this time of year.

Or, if you can, slow down a bit. Go completely counter to what everyone else is doing and really be present this December. You might feel pulled to “do more” or be in ten places at once. But is that what will make you happy? Go slow despite the social pressures. Do what feels right for you. As Coelho says, allow a new person to grow inside of you.

On a related note, check out Sage On Earth, a travel blog I recently found about a family of four who combines simple living with family adventure, “discovering our beautiful world at a different pace.” P.S. They have a beautiful instagram, too.

Decluttering my life has brought me peace of mind and relief from the world around me. There’s nothing like walking into the space you created and knowing you have nothing more than what you need. I write articles to help others create that same feeling for themselves.

Live simply. Feel better.

Bringing you a short quote today that I read in Essentialism:

“If one’s life is simple, contentment has to come. Simplicity is extremely important for happiness.” —Dalai Lama (tweet that)

Decluttering my life has brought me peace of mind and relief from the world around me. There’s nothing like walking into the space you created and knowing you have nothing more than what you need. I write articles to help others create that same feeling for themselves.

Only a few things really matter

I started re-reading Essentialism this week. Essentialism is a book by Greg McKeown about simplifying your life in all areas and prioritizing “the vital few” over “the trivial many”. It’s been recommended by The Minimalists and many others, and was given to me by a close friend.

About a third of the way through is the Essentialist principle “Only a few things really matter.” When I read that again last night, I right away thought about something I’m currently going through. I’m debating keeping one of my multiple jobs, because it’s turned out to not be an ideal fit. My hesitancy to leave comes, I think, from the idea that quitting would be wrong or somehow taking the easy way out. I know the right choice is for me to leave so I can pursue something that’s a better fit, but I haven’t been listening to myself. Instead, I’ve been making it a big deal in my mind and going back and forth.

Reading that only a few things really matter, I instantly realized that neither this job nor the stress I’m feeling about leaving this job are things that really matter. I like to look at the big scheme of things and think, “a year from now, will this even matter?” Usually when I ask myself that, the answer is no. That makes my decision a lot easier. (tweet that)

What are you making into a big deal in your life that doesn’t really matter?

Decluttering my life has brought me peace of mind and relief from the world around me. There’s nothing like walking into the space you created and knowing you have nothing more than what you need. I write articles to help others create that same feeling for themselves.

You don’t have to finish that book that sucks

Have you ever found yourself reading a book that you really aren’t into, but you feel like it would be wrong to stop reading it? You give it chapter after chapter of “it might improve” but it still sucks. And it’s sucking away your time.

I’ve had books that I’ve started, hated, put down, but kept in the chance that “maybe when I’m older I’ll appreciate it more”. Then years later I’ve opened them with renewed patience, only to nearly bore myself to sleep with it a second time. It’s laughable but true that I’ve even done this a third time with some books.

Why should we continue doing something — anything — that does not bring us joy? (tweet that)

If a book sucks, donate it. If a movie is awful, turn it off. Don’t waste any more time on it.

If the IT person you’re on the phone with is in a bad mood, hang up right now and call again to get a different person. (Real-life advice I was given just this week! Bye, Felicia.) Your time is precious and limited. Those minutes or hours are ones you won’t get back.

I think we have been conditioned from being in school, where we had to finish a book for an assignment, that no matter how much we dislike something, the point isn’t to like it, it’s to finish it. What backwards thinking.

If you buy something and change your mind, return it. If the tags are already off, give it to a friend or donate it. But don’t let it sit in your home taking up your precious space and your precious mental energy to look at it every day.

It’s only when we start valuing our time and our energy that we will see how much of it we’ve wasted in the past. (tweet that)

And on that note, I’ll let you get on with your day. How do you want to spend it?

 

Decluttering my life has brought me peace of mind and relief from the world around me. There’s nothing like walking into the space you created and knowing you have nothing more than what you need. I write articles to help others create that same feeling for themselves.

Paying other people to paint your nails and make your coffee

Do you really need to pay someone to paint your nails while you sip on that $5 latte? (If yes, then girl, you do you. Iced vanilla lattes are delicious and that pedi is on point.)

Working in a cafe, I often people-watch during slow moments. Lots of young people on their laptops. Lots of old people sitting with friends. (Which isn’t a commentary on generational differences although as I typed that I realized it very well could be!)

I have a lot of regular customers. Which I love. I love that I know their names and their stories, and they know mine. I see them walk in the door and I start making their usual. It’s half done by the time they reach the counter.

How do I know their usual? How do they even have a usual? Because they are in there multiple times a day, spending money they may or may not have, to get an overly-sugary beverage and throw away their paper cup when they’re done. (Don’t even get me started on the sustainability crisis in restaurants and cafes.)

But back to people watching. Did I mention that the laptops are usually Apples? Because we have to keep in mind that if you’re going to do your work in a public place, you have to look good doing it. And when you hand me your credit card, I do notice your nice manicure.

I’ve seen your credit card a lot. An average of $4, once a day, every weekday, is $87/month or $1,040/year. Or, if you’re really dedicated and come in twice on weekdays and once on weekends — thank you for keeping us in business — then you’re spending $121/month or $1,456/year. On coffee.

Now let’s look at nails. Let’s say it’s once a month or so and about $25, so $300/year. On nails.

We could talk about other cosmetic procedures and treatments. And I didn’t even mention ordering takeout once or twice a week. But I think you get the idea.

I personally do my own nails and grooming, make my own meals (unless I’m meeting a friend for lunch or on a date), and generally manage my own affairs where and when I’m able to. Plus, despite working in a coffee shop, I am not addicted to coffee. Same goes for alcohol, french fries, etc, but again that’s just me.

This saves me thousands of dollars a year.

Do I enjoy the occasional $5 beverage? Sure. Will I eventually one day get my nails done? Maybe. There’s nothing wrong with living a little. There’s nothing wrong with living a lot.

If you enjoy those luxuries and can afford them, then more power to you. I wish you every financial success in the future so you can maintain that lifestyle. And if you are struggling, I support you in dropping some of the unnecessary items from your bills. You don’t need them. You will be fine without them.

To each his own, and the way you spend money is no exception. I’ll leave you with a quote from my favorite minimalism blog, Becoming Minimalist:

“We don’t buy things with money. We buy them with hours from our lives.”

 

 

Decluttering my life has brought me peace of mind and relief from the world around me. There’s nothing like walking into the space you created and knowing you have nothing more than what you need. I write articles to help others create that same feeling for themselves.