Is Instagram Making You Poor?

I follow hundreds of people on the popular social media platform: Instagram. Many have referred to Instagram as a “highlight reel” of ones own life. Nailed it. People post what they want you to see. They want you to see them at music festivals, eating out, and sporting their latest fashion finds. As a viewer, I give praise, and even downright envy some people who seem to live a “better” life than me. And I’m not only referring to Instagram models, I’m talking about people I know and even my own friends.

What goes on in our minds

I see they have somehow made it to three music festivals this year and think to myself; ‘I need to be more fun, money is just money’. I see they eat out at nice restaurants regularly and think to myself: ‘there’s a cute bakery a few miles away that would be such a cute post’. I see them in amazing clothes and think to myself: ‘If I put less money toward my 401(K), that would be one shopping spree a month and I could dress like that’.

What happens

We spend more. We spend more to attend the parties and events just to post about it. We eat out more so that we can tag our location in the Instastory. We charge our credit card so we have the latest shoe that is all over our feed.

We constantly chase a lifestyle that is beyond our means.

We all do it. Even the people we ‘envy’ are doing it to follow someone else. Over 30% of millennials have $0 in their savings account. And roughly 70% have high balances on their credit cards. We are drowning. And it’s because we try to keep up with an unrealistic unattainable lifestyle.

What needs to happen

We need to realize that Instagram isn’t reality, far from it. That the smiling people we see in posts are just like us, with good days and bad, and most likely worrying about how they are going to afford their next vacation, too. I know nothing huge will change, posters are still gonna post; but if we can take a step back and realize what’s happening, maybe we can inch our way toward smarter monetary decisions for ourselves.

 

Eat These Breakfast Foods to Lose Weight

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I like to say, the morning is the most important time of the day. Because how you start your morning can determine how the rest of your day goes. See my How to Wake Up Early and Work Out, or How to become a Morning Person posts. Try these breakfast foods to start your day out healthy, increase the likelihood you make healthier decisions later, and to lose weight.

Avocado Toast

There is a reason this breakfast food is trending right now, and it’s not just because it pictures nicely. Avocado toast is a great breakfast for losing weight. Avocado is full of healthy fats. Plus, when on top of a whole wheat slice of bread, you’ll be full for hours. A great bread options is Ezekiel sprouted bread. Feel free to add a little butter and sauce for taste (just be mindful of serving sizes)!

Steel Cut Oats

Steel Cut Oats are a great way to start your day.  Jam-packed with protein, this breakfast will keep you feeling full until lunch. A great brand is Urban Remedy. This is the best Raw Steel Cut Oatmeal I’ve ever had. It tastes more like a dessert than healthy breakfast!

Egg Toast

To make an egg over easy, and so you get the most yolk out of it: heat your pan on low and cover your egg with a lid. Cook it for a few minutes, keep a watchful eye as you don’t want to over cook it. Toast a slice of bread (like the one mentioned above), put some healthy butter on it, and your egg on top. This breakfast is nutritious and delicious.

5 Tips for Staying Healthy When You Have a Busy Schedule

For those with busy schedules, a hectic life can get in the way of your healthy priorities. But, there are ways you can incorporate healthy decisions into your already busy life.

1. Meal Prep

When you’re busy, nothing is as precious as time. And meal prepping for the week will save you tons of it. Take about two hours aside on Sunday and make your lunches and dinners for the following four to five days.

2. Incorporate Exercise into your Routine

There are a few things you can do that really take no extra time at all. Opt for the stairs instead of elevator. Walk over to a colleagues desk instead of instant messaging them. Walk to the store if its close (parking is what takes forever). There are many other things you can do to make your day to day activities a little healthier.

3. Don’t let stress take over

Many people turn to food when stressed. After a long hard day at the office, you may think you deserve that ice cream or donut for all your efforts. You may turn to a few glasses of wine to ‘wine’ down at the end of a hard day. Even at lunch, in a stressed rush, you may turn to the unhealthy, easy to eat quickly, candy bar. Don’t let stress control your diet. Instead, turn to salads, or sandwiches and remember to stay healthy!

4. Try 20 minute workout sessions

You really don’t need much time to work out. There are many HIIT (high intensity interval training) workouts that are no longer than 20 minutes, and boy, do they work. Learn a few different variations, some for arms, abs, legs, and butt. All you need is 20 minutes each morning, c’mon, you can spare that!

5. Try incorporating exercise as group activities like family time

Every afternoon, after dinner, take your family on a 30 minute walk. Maybe its to a park, or frozen yogurt, or just around the neighborhood with the dogs. Sunday mornings are a great day to go hiking with the girls. Whatever you do, include others, because then it’s something to look forward to and valuable time spent with loved ones.

3 Tips for Self Motivation

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Make a Plan

Sitting down and making a plan is motivational in itself. When you have to think about what you want to accomplish and how you’re going to get there; you become eager to get started. Make your plan broken out in steps, and make those steps easy, achievable, smaller goals.

Track Your Progress

Whatever goal you’re reaching for, take before and after photos or notes. It’s hard to see how far you’ve come when you’re focused on the smaller steps in your plan. You can get caught up in looking at how much further you have to go instead of looking back at how far you’ve already come.

Stay Positive

Even if you aren’t seeing the outcome you want, as quickly as you want, stay positive! Changing a habit, your body, or completing a goal takes time. Take another look at how far you’ve come since you started. And remember, things take time.

3 Fool Proof Ways to Save Money

As someone who holds a degree in Financial Planning, I am constantly aware of the money mistakes people make that I was warned about during my studies. The truth is; saving money really isn’t that hard. There are steps you can take that basically guarantee you save.

piggy bank

Create Saving Goals

Set goals for yourself. Do you want $3,000 put away for travel? You’ll become addicted to watching your saving accounts grow and reach your goals. This is how saving can actually become fun – when you have something to work toward.

Track Your Spending

You really only need to do this for one month. This is to discover how much you’re spending on food, eating out, shopping, etc. From this, you can determine areas you can cut back on and how much you should be spending on these things. It’s easy to eat out one less time a week, and pass up on one of many shopping sprees a month. By being aware of your spending, you’ll be more conscious before swiping your credit card.

Make it Automatic

By setting up automatic savings, it becomes thoughtless. The reason many have such a hard time with saving is because its hard for them to take a chunk of their money and send it away to a savings account when they view it as spendable income. But, if you make it so the money automatically transfers on the 1st, its gone and you’re left with your real spendable allowance.

 

 

The 8 Best Drug Store Moiserizers

Don’t waste your money on the expensive stuff when there are numerous drugstore products that work just as well.

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  1. CeraVe Facial Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30. This moisturizer is loaded with ingredients that hydrate, protect, and nourish skin. Plus, the SPF content is great. For, $12, this is a great purchase. Screen Shot 2017-07-30 at 1.33.42 PM.png
  2. Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer SPF 15. This moisturizer has been proven to help skin tone and texture. After using this for a month or so, I really did see a positive change in my skin. Screen Shot 2017-07-30 at 1.41.03 PM.png
  3. Pond’s Dry Skin Cream. This lotion gives a cooling sensation upon application. After using this product my skin was much softer and I noticed my brown spots fading.Screen Shot 2017-07-30 at 1.55.11 PM.png
  4. Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture Sensitive Skin.  This moisturizer does all it claims, it is super hydrating and doesn’t bother even the most sensitive skin. I like to apply this before putting on makeup, as I’ve noticed it makes my makeup last longer.Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 7.27.50 AM.png
  5. CeraVe Facial Moisturizing Lotion. This is a great night lotion. When I first started using this lotion, I thought it wasn’t hydrating because it doesn’t leave any type of residue when applied. But, it hydrates well without feeling oily or heavy.Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 7.30.23 AM.png
  6. Burt’s Bees Intense Hydration Eye Cream. This stuff is intensely hydrating, and that’s not just the name talking. This eye cream is super light, allowing you to apply liberally, and waking up with smoother and hydrated eyes.Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 7.34.15 AM
  7. L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Anti-Wrinkle + Firming Eye Cream. It is surprising this eye cream is only $13 given how powerful it’s formula is. This product really delivers results, for a fraction of the price compared to other product that deliver the same. Ponds
  8. Pond’s Cold Cream. This cream is a moisturizing deep clean cleanser and makeup remover. Perfect for late nights when doing you’re entire routine just isn’t going to happen. Apply liberally and massage into skin (eye area too) and wipe off access makeup and cream with a cloth. This hydrates your skin while removing dirt. Proven to not clog pores.

Do These 3 Things Every Morning to Lose Weight

Do these three things every morning, in this order, to shed the weight!

Drink a cold glass of water right after you wake up

This detoxes the body and really gets your digestive track going. This will increase your metabolism and wake you up. Plus, if you’re struggling to drink enough water, this gets one glass out of the way!

Exercise

This also gets the metabolism going. Studies show you will burn up to 200 calories more the rest of the day doing nothing than if you don’t work out. You are also more likely to make better health decisions if you start your day with a workout. Plus, this is a great way to ensure your workout doesn’t get skipped!

Relax

Take ten minutes to breathe and relax. Think about what you hope you accomplish that day, encourage positive thoughts, and take time to reflect.