Exhaustion and burnout are real and serious. It’s especially easy to let them sneak up on you if you’re a student or an entrepreneur (or both!). I’ve lived the student life, and I’m still about as thrifty as they come, but I believe there are ways to incorporate little luxuries into your life that have big benefits. Small investments can still yield results. It’s worth taking a few minutes to think about little things that can make a difference to your quality of life.
When I say “little luxuries”, I mean things like:
Having new material delivered to your home is awesome. Reading the paper is part of my sweet Sunday mornings, but it also lets me see new images, and sparks ideas. If you really want to shoot for Wired, you should be looking to see what kind of work they feature, and who they’re currently hiring to shoot it. Subscriptions are more cost efficient than impulse buying from the grocery rack every month, and a lot of times you can bundle them for even more savings.
Most of us have a print lying flat somewhere, waiting for a frame. Whether you swapped prints with someone in second-year, bought a piece off Etsy, or just love the graphics on that postcard from Rome, you should frame and enjoy it. Custom frames are available but can be costly. If you’re not able to make that investment right now, try a thrift shop or dollar store. You can always have a mat cut to fit the piece. Having art around is inspiring, and putting a piece in a frame says “this is important to me.”
Similar to the framed art, having beautiful things around is inspiring. And as you power up for final exams, or late nights of grant-writing, I think having a few living things in your space reminds you of the world outside. Flowers don’t have to be expensive, and you can usually find a bunch at the convenience store. (I put three dollars worth of tulips in an empty beer bottle on our table and I feel like Martha Stewart.) Studies show that sharing space with plants is good for your mental health.
Or any grocery delivery service, really. When work piles up, I often find myself too busy to eat well (though it’s exactly when I should be taking care of myself). I recently started buying my groceries online through Grocery Gateway, and they get delivered to my house for $10 (no matter how much food I order!). It saves me having to get to and from the store, I can do my shopping at 3am, and I get to choose the 1.5 hour window when they’re delivered. It’s super convenient, and it’s absolutely worth $10 for me to not have to make time in my schedule to go grocery shopping.
I could keep this list going, but a lot of my small luxuries are particular to me (unless you also like having a bright red lipstick in your purse….)
What are some of yours?