Musings of a Museum Fanatic: September 2020

9.15.2020

6 Tips for Tackling Anxiety

About a year into my previous job things got so stressful with my boss at the time that my anxiety shot through the roof. My stomach was a mess I could barely eat for a week, I was crying every day about going in to work and I had to visit the doctors office several times in a week to figure out what was happening.

Since that week I've come to realize what my signs of the anxiety are and have worked to develop techniques for tackling the anxiousness before it becomes that big of an issue again. Here are 6 things that I do to prevent and stop anxiety. 


Stop & name it
When you first start to feel overwhelming stress or anxiety just stopping and trying to name what is causing the stress can be just the thing to stop it. Even if you're further in to feeling anxious this can help bring you back down. Kevin has discovered that helping me pick out specific stresses helps to calm me down. If you don't have someone with you talk to yourself.

Meditation/Self Hypnosis
This is a technique my mom recommended for me during that first huge anxiety time. She had used meditation/self hypnosis cassette tapes for years to help relaxed when stressed. I found that YouTube was a wealth of these types of videos. There was one video in particular that I used every morning as soon as I woke up. I helped me to relax my entire body, which for someone who carries their anxiety in their stomach that made a huge difference. Even if you just need some relaxation mediation can be just the ticket.  

Lavender 
Calming smells can bring on relaxation when you're feeling stress. I always knew lavender was a good thing to have around when you need to feel calm but until a few years ago I wasn't using it regularly. Stephanie turned me on to what she uses before bed, Essence of Vali's Sleep. I use a drop or two on my pillow before I go to bed. It helps to relax me while I'm reading before we go to sleep. 

Calming sounds
I'm always a big fan of using music to help with certain emotions. Bringing calm by way of music is also a natural way to relax and help with anxiety. Not sure where to start check out your library for CDs or Pandora for a soothing music channel. When you're trying to relax or meditate having the soothing sound playing can help calm your nerves. 

Have a warm drink
Ever noticed when you have that fresh cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate when you take those first few sips and feel the warmth spread through your body. You can feel the relaxation coming with the warmth.  

Deep breaths
Probably one of the most important things to do to reduce anxiety is deep breathes. While you're doing all of these things make sure you're taking deep breathes. I find when I'm having an anxiety moment if I stop and focus on deep breathes it breaks up the tense anxious feeling. It makes me stop and name the stresses too. 

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

9.08.2020

15 Things I Quit Buying to Save Money

15 Things I Quit Buying to Save Money by Musings of a Museum Fanatic



**This post may contain affiliate links

It's been a few years since Kevin and I have been working to get rid of excess stuff already in our lives. Since we've been very mindful of our budgeting we've been working to bring less stuff into our lives. It's pretty amazing but there have been a number of items that we've pretty much stopped buying that used to be regular spending areas. 

This is our list of items but it might not necessarily be your list so don't feel like this is an end all be all type of list. Your priorities and needs might be different. 

Jewelry
I can't remember the last time I purchased a new piece. I have so much that I love but don't usually wear so there is no need to and anything new. 

Make-up
Don't really wear it so why spend lots of money on many different kinds

Scrapbook stuff
This is sort of a recent one and I'm still working on it. I've turned it into a collection of sorts and need to stop adding to it and start using it!

Books 
This has been something I've been giving up for years. This doesn't mean I'm not reading it just means I'm using the library more or a cost effective option like Scribd (try it out for 60 days free!)

DVDs
Yes I am a weird person who still has DVDs in our house. Even though we have quite a few I've stopped adding to our collection unless it's something I can't get in another form and absolutely love. 

Physical gifts
I haven't totally stopped on this but it's been cut way back. Like for the nephew and nieces I've been getting them a small toy or something usable like chalk then contributing to their 529 education accounts for gifts. Or gifting experiences for the adults in my life.

Ornaments
Kevin and I have two things we like to get as souvenirs from trips, ornaments or magnets. They're small and something fun. For a few years we were getting so many it's a bit nuts so we've been cutting back on that and getting more consumable souvenirs to enjoy later when we're back. 

New Clothes
My style tends to be more classic with a little bit of pizzazz or trendy items thrown in. So why was I buying new clothes like crazy? There was no need for it. So now I'm working to wear clothes until there are holes and no new items until I absolutely need to.

Pop
We'e worked hard to cut pop out of our diet and only get it every now and then as a treat. 

Greeting cards
I have been making all of our cards for the past year and a half with my Cricut. They've been unique and people have enjoyed having a homemade card.

Notepads & sticky notes
We've acquired so many as gifts and through promotional items that we have enough for years. There is no reason to spend money on one just because I like the design. 

Pens
Same reason as the notepads!

Water bottles
We weren't really buying these regularly but we've gotten much better about taking our reusable ones when we leave the house. So if we need to we don't have to buy one while we're out. 

Home Decor
I've never been a huge home decor buyer but now that we own a place I've found myself wanting to buy. Instead I looked at things like my craft stash and said I've got paint and vinyl, Kevin's dad has wood scraps. I can make a really cool sign like the $25 one at the store with stuff I already have!

Pampering 
I love getting pampered. I usually get a couple of pedicures during the spring and summer plus I was getting regular massages to deal with the stress of my previous job. I've cut way back on these items and only get them as an every now and then treat. No pedicures at all this year!



Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

9.01.2020

8 Different Ways to Automate Your Life

There is so much we have to do and think about these days. From kids going back to school to work to keeping up with our homes. It can be overwhelming!! I've found that there are some areas of my life that I can automate and take some of that stress and overwhelm away. Even just automating some of these small items can make life feel completely different. Have you automated anything in your life? What have you set on autopilot?

8 Different Ways to Automate Your Life by Musings of a Museum Fanatic



**This post may contain affiliate links

Bills
Automating your bills is probably the most common area that people automate their life. With everything having different dates and most of us having lots of bills. This is especially a good one if you have issues remembering to pay them by the due date. Make sure you remember to put the total in your budget though! You don't want to not be aware of how much the bills are costing you especially ones that can vary a lot like your electric bill. 

Groceries & household items
The past few years subscriptions have been all the rage. You can even have a subscription to items you order regularly from Amazon! By automating some of your groceries and household items you make sure that you never run out, you don't have to worry about purchasing the item and a lot of times by having a subscription you can get a better price. 

Cleaner Inbox
Did you know that there are ways to automate your email so it goes straight to folders? I've been using this automation to clean up my inbox. The biggest one I use it for is professional list serves. I'm on a bunch and they would clog up my inbox like crazy. They all go to a folder so once a week I can either skim through them or do a keyword search then just delete the rest. This is also great if you get a lot of promotion emails. Although if you are always just deleting the email then just unsubscribe because clearly you're not reading them at all. 

Finding coupon codes online
We all know I love a good deal. I would spend so much darn time trying to figure out coupon codes it was ridiculous. There I was 20 minutes later and four google pages in trying to find a code that worked. I feel like I am not the only person who does this right? So much time wasted. Then I had someone tell me about Honey, I was a little skeptical at first but it really does work. After you add the extension it just gives you a pop up when your in the cart and voila it checks all the deals to make sure you've got the best one. Honey has definitely saved me lots of time and money. 

Monthly contributions & saving
I've always heard the saying pay yourself first and I think it's a really smart one. If you've never saved or put money away in a retirement account it can be tough to change over to that mindset at first. I recommend starting small with an automatic contribution into the account. Once you've worked out your budget and adjusted increase it a bit. Then you can adjust to that and so on until you're doing about 15-20% which is what most financial gurus and planners recommend. Just make sure you're doing this before the rest of your monthly expenses and making it a priority. 

Budgeting
When we first started budgeting it took forrreeeever. Well at least that's what it felt like ha. We quickly realized that by both of us having access to EveryDollar through the app and online it makes things much easier. So we automated it that way but with most budgeting apps you can actually connect them to accounts and have the app pull in the charges automatically. So you just have to go in a double check but they do all the heavy lifting. 

Create systems in your life
There are some things that as much as we want we can't totally automate them. One thing for me is cleaning as much as I would love to hire someone and totally automate that in my life it's just not in our budget. So since we can't afford to hire it out I've been working to create a system to make cleaning easier. 

Maybe you don't want to spend money to have meal kits delivered to your house but want to make your lunches and dinners easier. Think about meal prepping in larger batches or doing a more intense meal planning at the beginning of the week. Setting up systems and sticking to them (always the tough part!) can help make life easier too. 

IFTTT
If you've been blogging or doing any sort of social media stuff for a few years you might be familiar with IFTTT (If This Then That). Most of what it use it for is blog related but there is so much more it can do. You can have it save photos your tagged in to your Dropbox or connect it with your home devices now. Check out all the different applets or formulas you can make and you'll be amazed at what you can automate with IFTTT.

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!