Embracing Minimalism

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Like many people, I’ve spent the majority of my life collecting things. While this process was never intentional, the more time passed, the more “stuff” I accumulated. Clothing, candles, purses, lotions, makeup…you name it, I’ve got it.  

Recently, I experienced what it was to live without 90% percent of my possessions.  After living in Tennessee for the past three years, my time in the southern state came to a close. I packed up the majority of my possessions and sent them on to be stored in Ohio, where I’m originally from. I intended to follow behind just a few days after, but ended up extending my stay for two weeks. (Granted, I have spent more than two weeks living out of a bag before, but sleeping in my nearly empty bedroom felt different.) My extra time in Tennessee was spent crashing on my roommate’s air mattress near Chattanooga and couch surfing in Nashville. Although I probably only wear half of my wardrobe as it is – another reason to sell/donate clothing! – it was rather foreign to have only the random items that had been left behind. My drawers full of beauty supplies (okay, ladies, do we really need six bottles of lotion?) were in a different state and I got a chance to see how little I need. 

The best part of this experience was that I genuinely thrived! Sure, some strategic planning to keep things like my vibrams would’ve been helpful, but overall, I was just fine. I got back to Ohio a couple days ago and was greeted with boxes of stuff. I was shocked at how unappealing it all was to me. While I once looked at my full closet with a sense of pride, I now stare at it and mentally calculate the next item I can get rid of. I’ve had multiple friends who have managed to cut down on their possessions so much that they’ve been able to fit everything they own in the backs of their cars. Lately, this lifestyle seems so much more appealing to me. 

The problem with living a lifestyle geared toward materialism is that it will never be enough. There will always be a new version of your smart phone, the perfect addition to your closet, a nicer car, or diamonds that somehow seem shinier than the ones you already own. That said, I have no problem with investing in quality purchases. It makes far more sense to me to spend a bit more money on something that will hold up, opposed to having to continually re-invest in cheaply made items. However, there is a big difference between “living for the next purchase” and allowing said purchases to enhance the quality of your life. I think the real contrast is in the non-attachment to possessions. If you live your life in pursuit of possessions, you will feel a sense of loss when they are gone. Instead, I encourage you to appreciate how “things” can enhance your life, but be so grounded internally that losing them would not truly impact you.  

Find your serenity outside of possessions, people! Whether it’s through meditation, being in nature, quality interactions with other humans, or any other sort of practice. The best time to let go and start being present is Now.   

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Best Travel Clothing for Women

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As a woman, I feel like most of us are in constant search for the ideal travel clothing. After seeing Travel Fashion Girl’s glowing review on a pair of Anatomie’s travel pants, I knew I needed to try them out. I had a specific image in my mind of the perfect travel pants (lightweight, neutral color, quick dry, good fit, etc.) and they fit the bill. After exploring the Anatomie Wear website, I couldn’t believe I’d never heard about their line before!

Recently, Anatomie Wear hooked me up with a complimentary pair of Skyler Skinny pants and the Tatiana Travel Tank. I could hardly wait to try them out! I wore the tank top on a night out with the girls and, despite their diverse tastes in clothing, they all approved.The pants are advertised as quick drying and lightweight, but I underestimated the extent to which this was true. Over this past weekend, it was continually raining in Tennessee and I had the task of moving 90% of my possessions out of my house. While clear skies would’ve made the move easier, I got to see how the pants held up both in the rain and while loading boxes. Not only were they comfortable enough to lounge around the house in, I barely noticed the rain and they dried so quickly I didn’t even need to change pants after coming inside. 

These two items passed the test with flying colors and I am so excited to take them on my journeys abroad! Undoubtedly, these are going to become staples in my closet and I look forward to trying out more clothing from Anatomie Wear

– To shop, click here!  – 

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Tatiana Travel Tank Breakdown

This fashionable top wears great and can be matched with nearly any sort of bottom – it will definitely be coming with me on future adventures! 

Key Aspects: fashionable, multi-use, doesn’t wrinkle 

 Fabric 

  • Very soft 
  • Not see-through 
  • Doesn’t wrinkle 
  • Lightweight 

Style  

  • Mesh portion adds detail and makes it more fashionable than a typical black tank 
  • Flattering Shape 
  • Looks great under a blazer/jacket 
  • Can easily be dressed up or down 

Color

  • Neutral colors (black, navy, white) 

Other Perks

  • Modest enough to not draw unwanted attention 
  • Comfortable 
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Tatiana Travel Tank

 

Skyler Skinny Pants Breakdown 

This extremely versatile pair of travel pants has quickly become a staple in my wardrobe and is now a go-to for long flights, train rides, and car rides!  

Key Aspects: versatile, lightweight, quick-dry, tailored-look

Fabric 

  • Extremely lightweight (nylon-lycra micro fiber fabric) 
  • Comfortable
  • Stretchy 
  • Form fitting 
  • Quick-drying 
  • Thin fabric (it’s thick enough to wear sans underwear, but I don’t recommend wearing brightly colored/pattered underwear) 

 Style 

  • Well tailored (my ideal pair of travel pants should look like they were made for me and these are exactly what I’d envisioned) 
  • Detailed pockets and snaps add zest
  • High waisted (this is awesome if you don’t want to give the whole world a free show when bending over or sitting, but there are low-rise options available) 
  • Extremely versatile – while they look quite casual, it’s not hard to dress ‘em up with a pair of heels and a fancier shirt 
  • Neutral colors options (black, grey, navy) 

Other Perks 

  • While the fabric is thin and form fitting, it’s very forgiving! 
  • Pant legs look great folded up to create the cropped pant look 
  • Easily works with flats, boots, or heals 
  • Leg length is not exorbitantly long (I’m 5’4, but I was not gifted with long stems and finding pants that I don’t need to have tailored is rare for me)  
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Skyler Skinny Travel Pants

 – Finding properly fitting clothing online can be tough, but Anatomie

has an online guide to fit and style! Just click here. – 

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Help other women find the best travel clothes out there – please share! 

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Why are you traveling?

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Even if you’ve just skimmed through this blog, you’ve probably gathered that self-development is very important to me. I gobble up new books, podcasts, products, and information like it’s my day job. You also may have noticed my ever-growing Bucket List of places I want to visit, things I want to do, and experiences I want to participate in. While on a weekend trip to the East Coast, a good friend questioned my true intention behind wanting to experience these things. He did this simply by asking, “Why?”
 
At first, I gave the typical answers you would expect out of a young adventuress: “I want to have as many experiences in this life as possible,” “I want to immerse myself in the culture,” “There’s a whole world to explore,” “I want to understand the way these people think,” etc. Then, we really delved into the underlying reasoning. I’m going to share what I discovered with you, but honestly, my ego does not want to – it would rather hide in its little shell and maintain a good appearance. Anyway… 
 
Why I wanted to travel:
  •  unconsciously seeking self-expansion 
  •  to be seen by others as someone who is well-traveled 
  •  to try and enhance my sense of self-worth through these experiences
  •  to try and find myself 
  •  to impress others 
Why I want to travel Now
  •  Use this life to its fullest
  •  See the beauty this world holds 
The underlying reason behind us seeking all these experiences is to expand…and it is totally illusory! The only way we can truly expand is internally (e.g. through meditation). Travel and having exciting experiences isn’t at all wrong, it’s just vital to recognize the real thing we are seeking cannot be found through it. No matter how many stamps I get on my passport, how my times I jump out of a plane, or how many items I cross off of my bucket list, I will not be fulfilled. There may be a temporary high or a brief sense of accomplishment from these experiences, but we will be left wanting more. 
 
Why is that you travel? I’d love to hear about any similar realizations you’ve had or any completely different ideas you’ve thought on the topic! 
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Find romance in all facets of life!

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A lot of us have a tendency to expect our romantic partners to fulfill all of our needs. The thing is, it’s totally unrealistic to expect one person to do so! Take the pressure off of him/her and start finding romance, joy, and fulfillment in all facets of your life!

The Weekend Experience – Escape from mediocrity!

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The Weekend Experience - Escape from mediocrity!

Fellow adventurers, I would like to introduce you to a very special individual, Kyle Cease.

If you’ve not heard of him, your world is about to be rocked! Kyle is an extremely accomplished comedian, turned transformational speaker. He is completely unique in his “conscious comedy” and has reached hundreds of thousands of individuals around the globe. I bring him up to you, because he is having an event this July, The Weekend Experience. If you are into self-development, transformation, consciousness, comedy, or are just ready to say “screw it” to mediocrity, this event is for you.

I encourage you to go to http://www.KyleCease.com for more information – tickets are selling very quickly – and I look forward to seeing you there!

What’s in store for the foreign exchange rate in 2013

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Alright, folks, I’ve decided to open up Adventurous Andrea to guest posts and will be featuring more guest writers as time goes on. I love hearing other’s adventure, travel, informational, and life stories, and figured you do too! Because of my upcoming travels to Europe, a topic I’ve been researching more and more is exchange rates. When Peter shared some of his content with me, I was intrigued and figured I’d offer some of his knowledge to you. Without further adieu, I give you…

What’s in store for the foreign exchange rate in 2013

08.04.2013
by Peter Lavelle

Are you planning to move to Europe, like Andrea? If so, find out here what’s in store for the foreign exchange rate in 2013!

So far in 2013, the US dollar has been king of the hill where the foreign exchange rate is concerned.

On March 12th for instance, the greenback hit its highest against the UK pound since June 2010, or almost 3 years.

And on the 27th of March, the buck touched its strongest against the euro since November 21st last year, or close to 6 months.

How come? Well, it’s because, while the economies of Europe are still stuck in the mud, the US has been entering top gear.

For instance, the US has created close to 215,000 jobs each month since last November, which is no slow going.

Moreover, there’s an excellent chance the foreign exchange rate will reach fresh heights before the year is out.

First, this is because, if the US keeps creating jobs at this pace, the Federal Reserve will decide the economy no longer needs support, and stop printing money. That will quickly lift the buck.

Second, Europe is in recession, and looks set to stay there. That will put continued pressure on the UK pound and euro.

Given that, not only is it a good time to exchange currencies, but the foreign exchange rate could continue to pick up this year!

About the Author

Peter is an economist at foreign exchange broker Pure FX.

If you’d like a personalised forecast for the foreign exchange rate, pay him a visit! He’d be delighted to tell you what he thinks will happen next to the US dollar.

Exchange Rate