1. Organize and downsize your wardrobe.
Sell and/or donate anything you don’t want or use regularly. You can sell any newer (purchased within the last year or so usually) trendy or designer items to resale shops such as Crossroads or Buffalo Exchange, but you may not get as much as you’re hoping for, but cash is still more useful than the clutter. If you have any interesting, rare, popular or vintage items maybe try selling via eBay or posting it on Facebook. Another idea is to arrange a “clothing swap” – this is a fun way for girls to get drunk together and play “one girl’s junk is another girl’s treasure.” I also like to donate anything from t-shirts, jeans, old jackets, hats, and shoes to local shelters or non-profit organizations. Note that if you are interested in donating, make sure your goods are going directly to those in need and do not profit the organization. I would suggest getting rid of anything you haven’t worn in the past year or two and have no intentions of wearing again. I’m a guilty pack rat, but trust me, this feels SO good once you’ve narrowed it down, a least a little! Socks and underwear that are showing ridiculous signs of wear? Go ahead and throw those out, you’ll be saving yourself the embarrassment when you get frisky with someone and forgot you’re wearing the faded boxers and socks with a hole in the them…
2. Subscribe to a monthly beauty box… or several.
A good friend of mine turned me onto this when she mentioned I could get awesome high-end beauty samples at random in a grab box for 10-15 bucks. Turns out there are plenty of them to choose from. Moisturizer, a chocolate, a keratin hair treatment sample, coupons for online shopping, and a mirrored-case bright pink lip gloss were a few of the items in my first one. It’s a fun way to try new stuff without breaking the bank! Check out BirchBox.com, Allure Sample Society, GlossyBox.com (according to my friend this one is “More expensive than the rest but I swear it’s the best one”), and GoodeBox (all natural products for your gluten-free, vegan, allergic-to-everything-and-hate-all-chemicals-environmentally-conscious friends).
If you’re a guy, you’re still in luck. Check out the DollarShaveClub.com
3. Make new friends.
I wouldn’t be the first person to joke about how many creeps or rude people you come into contact with via most online dating sites, but what about… a friend-making site that only allowed you to be messaged by someone you already “crushed” on? Where all comments are visible to all users and everyone is encouraged to join in on the conversation? Where various meet-ups are arranged and valuable friendships are born. I’m talking about Crushee.com, a start up that recently went public after much beta testing, founded by Annaliese Nielsen. Nielsen was recently interviewed for Forbes regarding the website’s increase in success.
You may find yourself laughing at pictures of pizza and cats and scrolling through it like you would most of your social media, but you may also find yourself engaging in interesting conversations with very real, intriguing people. Despite the fact that Crushee is not a dating site, I would be lying if I said no one has met, hooked up, or started dating after meeting through the site. I’ve met some really amazing souls through this site and some even maintain long-distance internet friendships or hangout in the Crushee chat, because why not?! Cats and pizza gifs for everyone.
4. Want to create something and sell it? Start an Etsy store.
Want to support independent artists? Shop on Etsy. Etsy.com is a great place to find vintage or handcrafted one of a kind items, ranging from jewelry, wall art, photo prints, custom lingerie, and more! I highly recommend browsing Etsy for cute and original gift ideas (GREAT for Mother’s Day) or interesting jewelry. Speaking of, the same friend that swears by the beauty boxes she gets in the mail every month happens to have a pretty damn neat Etsy store where she sells handmade and colorful dreamcatchers and often incorporates crystals, skeleton keys, and feathers into necklaces, earrings, and rings. You can check out her store here. While I am shamelessly plugging my friends, I might as well add that both The Gypsy Fox and Flux of Feathers are run by badass Chicago-based ladies that create other fun clothing pieces and accessories. Check out the reworked denim and custom tank tops on Gypsy Fox for sure! Supporting independent artists and small businesses just kinda makes me feel good inside. Spread the handcrafted joy.
5. Stop procrastinating. You can be happy NOW.
Reflect on how you are spending your free time. Do you want to pick up a new hobby or drop a bad habit? My friend gave me a refurbished bass months ago and I still haven’t learned how to play it! What better time than NOW? You’ve been wanting to quit smoking… what better time than now? Sick of your boring job with no room for growth or not enough pay? Start filling out applications and brushing up that resume. Need to getaway? Save up for travel. Consider spending more time reading books than phone and computer screens. You’re in control. Create your own happiness by spending time doing things you love.