If there’s one thing that most students can agree on, it would be this: allowance is life. The moment you receive it, you instantly itch to spend your cash on something, whether it’s treating your barkada out for a meal or splurging on that trendy jacket you’ve been eyeing for what seems like forever. Next thing you know, you’ve got school projects to pay for, and well, you end up being young and broke—don’t worry, it happens to the best of us! You see, saving cash when you’re a student is easier said than done, but this isn’t to say that it’s impossible, so don’t give up just yet.
Instead of controlling yourself from overspending (which can often be a temporary solution), think long-term and open your mind to embracing a better lifestyle: minimalism. Once you adopt this modest way of living, you won’t only be saving more money, you’ll naturally find yourself making decisions more consciously in the long run.
Essentially, the goal of minimalism is to live with what you only need. Do you still have that pair of jeans that don’t fit you anymore? Or those video games that you’re done playing with? Give them to charity or sell them! Eliminate excess and make room for the tried-and-tested essentials. You’ll be surprised how much clutter you have in your life.
When building a minimalist wardrobe, avoid trendy pieces that will be ‘disposable’ after a few months and invest in timeless classics instead—you know, those well-made basics that you can rely on no matter the season, weather, or occasion. According to fashion guide Who What Wear, the trick is to stick to a neutral palette with staples like a good pair of jeans, a white tee, a lightweight sweater, etc. so that it will be pretty easy for you to mix and match them in a number of ways.
Once your closet is made up of pieces that you love and wear often, dressing up in the morning will be 10x easier, meaning you can spend more time on other important things like working on your school papers or even enjoying your breakfast for a little longer. After all, why do you think some of the most successful professionals resort to the most basic looks? Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, for example, usually steps out in a plain gray t-shirt, while the late Apple founder Steve Jobs loved to wear all black. The Fashion Spot explains that having a go-to uniform gave them more time (and energy) to focus on the decisions that really mattered. Brilliant, right?
Sustainability is also an important factor to consider when streamlining your wardrobe. Leading denim label BNY Jeans states that you should really put an emphasis on quality when buying clothes because they will last longer than if you buy garments made from cheap materials. Always keep in mind that the goal is to avoid excess; so if your jeans, for instance, easily shrink or stretch out after a few washes, you’ll find yourself constantly buying a pair of jeans which obviously isn’t practical. So how do you know if your jeans are built to last? Live About claims that you can tell the difference between good quality jeans and cheap pants by checking if the denim feels strong and heavy. Also, have a look at the jeans’ tag and if the weight is below 12 ounces, the pair may be of low quality.
Of course, being more mindful of what you splurge on, as well as curating your closet, are only two out of the many other ways in which you can truly live a minimalist way of life. But as a student, this is a great and easy way for you to start living a more meaningful, simpler—and dare we say it, happier—life. And slowly but surely, you will reap the benefits.
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