How Minimalism Simplifies My Life

Although minimalism has become relatively trendy throughout decade, it has a lot of meaningful applications beyond it’s visual aesthetics and freedom from materialism. Participating in minimalism doesn’t require you to be all or nothing. You don’t have to throw away all your worldly or sentimental possessions to practice minimalism. You can customize the suggested rules to fit your lifestyle and bring the most simplicity to your day to day without being inconvenient.

Now my apartment has an average amount of clutter as you would see in most homes. Where minimalism has helped me most is in the kitchen and in my closet. After moving across the country three years ago, I grossly underestimated the amount of items I had accumulated over a couple of years. I didn’t need 3 skillets, I don’t need 20 pairs of shoes. Having to put all of my belongings into boxes was a turning point for me and I realized something had to change. After several blog posts and youtube videos, here are 3 rules/mindsets that I found most practical:

One in, one out

If I’m buying a new pair of shoes I have to throw away, donate, or sell an old pair. Same goes with a new shirt, a new coffee mug, backpack, etc. This prevents my cupboards and drawers from overflowing. I try my best to have one thing serve one purpose. So for the example of shoes, I don’t only have one pair of shoes. Shoes have many purposes. Some are for hiking, for the gym, dressing up, winter, and chacos. I try my best to have one pair for every purpose. Although I customize this rule to fit my lifestyle. I have two pairs of dress shoes, one black and one brown. I have two pairs of winter boots because winters in Montana last 9 months. I certainly don’t need 4 pairs of Nikes to go running.

 

The 90/90 Rule

Have you used this item in 90 days? Do you plan to use it in the next 90 days? These are the two questions you ask yourself when using this rule. If the answer is no to both of them, you get rid of the item. Examples such as that barbecue grill, waffle maker, baseball bat, bass guitar collecting dust for years. Most people I know have an obnoxious unstackable amount of tupper ware. After a year of observing myself I realize I only use 6 or 7 food containers, so I gave the rest to Goodwill. Now there are many exceptions to this. When I approach things in my junk drawer or storage closet, I’ve changed my thought process from “just in case” to “this is for when”. Things like Elmer’s glue, sandpaper, and mason jars definitely serve a purpose, but keeping them around just in case is unnecessary clutter. Even though I haven’t used my tent in that time, this is for when I inevitably go camping. Sometimes it’s hard to get rid of an old snowboard or bicycle. And if keeping it as an ornament brings you joy then by all means keep it around. My approach to minimalism is to do what works best for you and your needs.

Simplifying my wardrobe

I have modified the idea of a uniform when it comes to minimalism. Steve Jobs is one of the more famous users of this idea. By wearing the same style of clothes every day, his mind is able to focus on more important decisions than just picking an outfit. I personally would not enjoy wearing the exact same thing every day. I do appreciate the simplicity and the lack of clutter in my closet that this mentality offers me. For my purposes, I have removed all of my graphic and colorful T shirts. I have 15 well fitted, comfortable, tri-blend, plain, mute toned t-shirts that match well with my jeans.

Although it is nice to be complimented on an intricate T shirt, I found it annoying when someone pointed out that I had worn the same shirt recently even though it was a week ago. An advantage of plain, muted toned T shirts is that they are subtle and you can get away with wearing the same color multiple times a week. It may seem frivolous, but frivolous or not I don’t have to worry about it anymore. I don’t have time to get into jackets and dress clothes but going from 50+ t shirts to 15 is a relief that is hard to explain.

With these simple practices, it has helped me appreciate the quality and value of the items in my house. I have also become more intentional with my future purchases and less stressed with clutter. Of course these “rules” are more complicated than what I have written about today. If this short article piqued your curiosity, I encourage you to look further into these rules and see how it could benefit your life.

Ten things I need to do before I die.

National Parks

Now I don’t plan on dying anytime soon, but in any case, I hope I experience these things before I go.

At one point, there were boards in my local downtown area that said, “Before I die I want to”, I personally never took them into consideration.

The time has come though where I have to write a blog post, so I am choosing to write a list of big and small things I want to do.

I can’t say that any are more significant than the next, or that they go in any type of order.

Here it is, ten things I want to do before I die.

  1. Meet David Dobrik

David Dobrik

This picture really did David Dobrik dirty, but that is besides the fact of how much I love his videos. On the flip side, it was the only one that was mildly good without copyright infringement.

2. Drink wine in Italy

Wine_Italy

Wine and Italy seem to complement themselves quite well and I feel this might just be what I need to die happy.

3. Attend New York Fashion week

New York Fashion week

Honestly, if I could attend any type of fashion week I would be happy. I figure if I am going, I might as well go to New York.

4. Watch Conor McGregor fight live

Conor McGregor

Even though the man is slightly controversial I really would love to see him fight live. I love Ireland and this Irish man.

5. Hike in all 61 National Parks

National Parks

I am not even sure if you can even “hike” in every national park in the U.S. Although, I do hope that I get to visit all of them.

6. Visit all Seven Wonders of the World

Seven Wonders

Extremely cliché, but they got their names for a reason.

7. Ski in Zell am See

Zell am See
Zell am See in Salzburg, Austria

Zell is located in Salzburg, Austria and I want to ski there. First things first, I have to learn to ski well enough not to die on the mountain. I went there for a Holiday while in Europe and fell in love with the pure beauty this place has to offer.

8. Wake up in the Four Seasons Hotel George V in Paris

Four Seasons Hotel George V

Crème de la crème…Even if I woke up in the lobby I think my life would be okay. Preferably stay in the penthouse overlooking the city of Paris, but we will work with what we have.

9. Ride a bull—A real one

Riding a bull

For some reason, I have it in my head that I wouldn’t get bucked off in the first millisecond and somewhat want to find out. I also really enjoy watching rodeo and probably should try it before I die.

10. Watch the Macys Day Parade in person

Macy's Day Parade

I have always loved watching the Macys Day parade on Thanksgiving. It was one of my favorite things as a little kid to watch with my mom. For that reason, I would love to see it in person with her one day.

Ten things I want to do before I die, some of them very small, some of them more meaningful and others are just plain out goofy. I don’t expect any of you to read this whole thing, but if you do, please share. I both need an “A” and am working for an “A” in this class as well as on my blog, in order to do that I must have 400 clicks of activity. Share away and enjoy my short blogging career.

The Hipster Test

Effortless

Are you a Hipster?

 

 

Take this short questionnaire:

  1. Do you wish your dad or mom saved their clothes from the 60s/70s so you could wear them?
  2. Do you only listen to obscure bands and artists on vinyl?
  3. Do you visit a coffee shop more than three times a day?
  4. Do you wear the same brand of shoes you wore in 1996?
  5. Do you have any facial hair?
  6. Do you not shave your legs, but kind of wish you did?
  7. Do you wear a beanie?
  8. Have you eaten cauliflower or toast in the past 24 hours?
  9. Do you alternate ordering beer, cider and  kombucha?
  10. Does your 4-year-old have a half-shaved, half long-hair hair style?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, proceed.

The Art of the Aging Hipster

Too hip? Or too hip to care?

CHOICES:

 

Vans on. Vans off.

 

Where to shop.

 

  • Keep it local.
  • Bring your dog.
  • Drink a smoothie at the same time.
  • Where your sunglasses inside.
  • Reintroduce yourself to people you’ve met several times before.
  • Shop only at stores containing a woman’s name
  • Talk about how you only thrift these days.

 

Are you woke? (quiz forthcoming)

 

Always look behind you. Always hold the door open for everyone even if you have to stand there for a very long time. And always remember:

 

 

Lesson: Pronouns

 

As part of your email signature add any/all of the following:

 

she/hers

 

he/his

 

ze/zer

 

Pop Culture.

 

When in doubt, use the words you said when you were in 7th grade. If they aren’t in the vernacular at this moment, they might be next week.

Activity.

Spot the difference!

Have a suggestion for a question, photo or want to nominate a Hipster of the Year? I’d love to hear from you.

 

 

10 Ideas for Graduation Cap Decoration

 

  1. Your Name

NameName

 

 

Putting our names on our possessions is what we have been doing since kindergarten. Now you are graduating and it’s time to decorate your mortarboard. You can use your first name only or last name as well. Style your name in a fancy way to let the audience know who is graduating 🙂

 

 

  1. Something related to your major

Major (math)Major (accounting)

If you have something that you repeatedly learn in your major or something that is very important in your major such as an equation, show it on your graduation cap. It represents what you got from school.

 

 

  1. School theme

School ThemeWhat about adding your school’s mascot?

 

 

  1. Future

FutureAdventure Is Out There

 

Tell the audience where you are going after you graduate from college! Make them excited as well by letting them know what is waiting for you in the future.

 

 

  1. Memory from college

Memory

Add something special to remind you of your college career. This could be some study buddies who you always studied with or with others whom you had the most precious time during school.

 

 

  1. Character

Captain AmericaAriel

 

Take your favorite character to your graduation. Be creative by using quotes from them! It will be entertaining for everyone at the graduation!

 

 

  1. Quotes and Phrase

Just did itBye Felicia

If you have any favorite quotes or phrases that are always in your mind, you could use them as a decoration to deliver your message to the audience. Some suggestions would be favorite quotes from a movie you always watch or a phrase that a famous company uses as their slogan.

 

 

  1. Thank Something

Thanks Mom And Dad And Coffee

Graduation is a great opportunity to say “Thank you”: thank someone who supported you through your college life; thank somewhere you always went during exam weeks; thank something that helped you keep energized when you took down your enemy aka homework.

 

 

  1. Confess Something

Btw i have a tatoo momThis is a great time to confess something. Tell your friends or family something you have kept secret. Surprise!

 

 

  1. 3D decoration

Beer PongBooks and Horse

 

I was impressed how creative people are when I was searching these images. Express what you liked from your school life with a miniature figure of it such as beer pong on your graduation cap. Cool!

 

 

 

 

 

Now what?

 

Did you find any good ideas for your graduation cap? I think it will be fun to decorate your cap because it becomes a memory of the last moments of your college life. It could be your last study break after you have all of your final project done. I hope this article helped you come up with a unique idea and was entertaining for you.

Montana Themed T-Shirts are a Summer Must-Have

montana_t-shirts

Take a walk through Brewfest or UM campus, and you’ll notice the Montana themed t-shirt takeover is strong in Missoula. Over the years, companies from all over the state have joined in to make really cool shirts for every Montanan. Check out these five brands that are leading the way.

Montana Shirt Company (Whitefish, MT)

t-shirt-montanagonia

The Montana Shirt Co. make shirts that any Montanan would be proud to wear. They specialize in crisp designs with simple color schemes that don’t over do it. Almost 100,000 Facebook users (that’s 10% of Montana’s population!) agree that it’s working. Check them out here.

Statriot Monfuckintana (Missoula, MT)

monfuckingtana_shirt

You’ve probably seen the shirts, bumper stickers, or heard a drunk guy yell it out on the river, because Monfuckintana is a pretty big deal. This name for a clothing line has got to be one of the best in Montana history, and the clean, artistic designs are almost as good. Check out Betty’s Divine, Walking Stick Toys, Edge Of the World, Rockin’ Rudy’s and The Green Light for Statiot’s t-shirts and stickers, as well as their website for more sweet designs.

Aspinwall Mountain Wear (Billings, MT)

Aspinwall t-shirt

Aspinwall Mountain Wear was started by Derek and Lucy Aspinwall, originally making t-shirts out of their garage for Scheels Billings. Derek literally had a dream one night where he was presenting the idea of Aspinwall clothing to all of his friends and family, and he has ran with it from there. Their clothing, that is known for superior fit and fabric, can be found in over 70 locations, including the UM Bookstore and on their website.

The Montana Way (Western Montana) 

Montana_way_shirt

Established in the Fall of 2014, The Montana Way brings the looks of rural Montana to their shirts. Most of their shirts have their slogan, “Blaze your own trail,” that speaks to the people of Montana that prefer nights around a campfire to going out on the town. Check out what else they have here.

Uptop Clothing (Butte, Montana)

uptop_shirt

Developed by Luke and Colt Anderson, Uptop Clothing has experienced insane popularity among students all over the state. Uptop has created a tribe like following for their brand, as described on the website quoted here: “those who wear the brand have further inspired the company to continue sharing the idea of doing what you love with integrity, enjoyment, and in an original way. Every moment is unique, whether it is something ordinary, or something completely unexpected.” You can pick up Uptop gear at the MSO Hub, the UM Bookstore, and on their website.

Ryne B.