9 Life Hacks for a Better 2016

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Life is hard, and we all know that.  However, there are some small moves and changes you can make today that will significantly improve your life. These life hacks are the key to a better 2016. Here are nine of our favorites…which one will you try?

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1. Digital Wallet and Budget

One of the coolest new tools becoming more and more popular in 2016 is the digital wallet. Instead of carrying around debit, credit, and gift cards, there are phone apps that allow you to pay with your phone. But if your spending is getting out of hand, check out sites like Mint which allow you to create a budget and savings goals. It even sends you notifications when you get close to blowing your cash!

2. Color ­Code Your Studying

Color is a powerful tool, especially with memorization. One of the best things you can do for your mind is to color­code your school work. Start with taking notes in different color pens. Then, color­code your notebooks and texts. Your brain will start to associate the colors with important information and help with retention.

3. Breakfast in a Cup

You can make practically anything with a microwave and a mug. One of the most popular is the egg omlet. Use egg whites, egg substitute, or a few cracked eggs in a mug. Add a dash of milk and then microwave for 15­-20 second intervals until cooked. Add in peppers, cheese, mushrooms, and more for a healthy meal in seconds.

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4. Create an Instant Speaker for Your Phone

You don’t need a fancy or expensive speaker for your smartphone. Instead, blast your music the efficient way by putting it inside a glass bowl. That, or create a more professional speaker using toilet paper rolls, a box, and some tape.

5. Keep Drawers Smelling Fresh

Nothing is worse than a musty old dresser. If your dorm furniture has seen better days, keep it smelling great by adding dryer sheets to the drawer. Replace once a week until it’s smelling better. If you like a more vibrant smell, spray your favorite perfume onto a cotton ball and add to the corners of the drawers.

6. Reheat Tasty Leftovers

Make sure your pizza is as fresh as it was the first day by microwaving it with a cup of water. This trick works with most bread based dishes to keep the dough from going stale or hard.

7. Make a Wall Mount for Your Tablet

No TV? No problem! With wall hooks purchased at most stores, you can create a customizable and secure wall mount for your tablet. Just place them under the bottom of the screen and then a few at the side to secure. Your tablet should be able to slide in and out.

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8. Use an App to Stay on Track

If social media distracts you from studying or working, you’re not alone. Download apps that prevent you from visiting certain websites for a period of time. This is the perfect way to to make sure your work gets down and your mind doesn’t wander.

9. Purchase Your Textbooks Cheaply

One of the worst parts about being a college student is the cost of textbooks. Instead of paying for them new, purchase them through used book stores online where you can get them for practically pennies. You can also host a textbook exchange with students who have taken the course the last semester. But if you really want to save cash on books, check out the text from the library, take pictures of the text and upload it to your phone or computer, or see if there is a free version online.

 

Image Sources (1,2,3)

5 Tips For the New Year

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photo cred: Gracefullee Made ]

I’m the type of person who finds solace in reflecting back on a year’s worth of memories.
They say that you shouldn’t spend too much time thinking about the past, but I find it just as worthy to look back at old mistakes in order to learn from them. If anything, struggles and difficult people I’ve encountered in the past have made me stronger as a person. Though I do admit that I’m guilty of wanting to change the past, I still keep my focus set on the present, in order to achieve what I want in the future.

Whether it’s academic achievements, meeting new friends, spending time with family or traveling, it’s always interesting to look back and see how far you’ve come. This helps me understand where I strayed off the path and how to do better and be better the next time around.

Instead of sharing my New Year’s resolutions, I thought I would compile a list of 5 tips to keep in mind as we head into 2016.

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Tip #1: Change your perspective and attitude.

Though I don’t particularly believe in the “new year, new me” slogan, because someone cannot “change” from one day to the next, I do believe that you can change your perspective and attitude towards certain people and things. Over the years, I’ve grown to understand that even when you think nobody’s watching, someone always is. Be mindful of your surroundings and be able to handle your attitude about something that doesn’t go your way.

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Tip #2: Invest in people who invest in you.

I mentioned before that I have encountered many difficult people in my life. Most of the time, I wish that I had never met them and wonder what would have happened if I had chosen to walk away. Instead of trying to fix the past, try learning from your mistakes. Take time to notice who cares enough to stay in your life and be the type of person you’re striving to meet. I do think we meet the wrong people in order to find the right ones.

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Tip #3: Understand that hard work never goes unnoticed.

The hardest part is being patient. I’m especially reminding myself of this because I am quite possibly the most impatient person you’ll ever meet. However, I’ve learned to control that and not let it show. Better yet, I’ve learned to change my perspective in the situation. This tip is also mindful for all you bloggers out there who are working hard to take your blog to the next level, or students striving to get into the college of your dreams, or anyone wanting to attain a goal that seems nearly impossible. Don’t. Give. Up. Success doesn’t come easy. You have to work for it.

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Tip #4: Stop comparing yourself to everyone else.

#guilty. We all do it. Comparison is the thief of joy, and all it does is tear you down. Let’s be real. Instead of beating yourself up over someone else’s success, let this be a challenge for you. Challenge yourself / push yourself to be the better version of you. Instead of focusing on what everyone else is doing, let yourself be your competition.

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Tip #5: Smile and laugh more.

I think we underestimate the power of smiling. Laughter is the best medicine, is it not? I think we worry too much on life’s little problems and it gets the best of us. Instead, try learning to breathesmile, and enjoy life. When you’re going through a stressful situation, try pausing the moment and remind yourself that life is about the journey, not the destination.

Even if these are tips you already use, it’s always good to have a reminder from time to time.

Thanks for reading!
Feel free to follow along on Pinterest for more inspiration, and be sure to head over to my blog Gracefullee Made!

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