Bettering Yourself for Life

Getting back on track in life can be a particularly tough thing to accomplish. Sure, the new year helps to motivate you some since everyone seems to love sharing their new year’s resolutions with one another on social media.

The thing is, how often do those people actually stick to their newly made routines? How often do they stick to it through a month? Half a year? For life?

Well, not often, I’m sure you could’ve guessed. A lot of resolutions on lists are life-changing goals that simply remain unaccomplished because, well, they’re pretty tough to do. To accomplish a life-changing goal, you’ve got to have a life-altering shift of mindset. It’s not all as simple as throwing your junk food in a few cardboard boxes lying around your house and then taking those cardboard boxes out and dumping everything within in the dumpster.

No, it takes a new way of thinking about your everyday life. You can’t simply expect to just get up off the couch every single day and go workout simply because your to-do list remains untouched. Rather, you’ve got to show yourself why it’s important to do, how it’ll change you, and remain tough on yourself at first. It takes over two months of something to make it a routine part of your life, and here we find ourselves just two weeks into the new year.

So, what does it take, then, to shift your outlook on everything?

It takes work. And on that note, let’s compare these resolutions, these healthy changes in your mind and body, to your career.

Why do you go to your job everyday? Well, because you have to. Why do you have to? You absolutely have to make money to pay bills and eat and live, right?

Well, look at your body and your mental health as a necessity, not an option. Look at working out and eating better and budgeting as a necessity because you absolutely have to, not because you can or should or may want to. Because you have to.

Once you shift this perspective to one of necessity rather than want, you’ll begin your path to routine. That’s the first step.

Once you’ve accomplished two or three months of steady exercising, cooking your own meals, saving money, whatever it is that you deem life changing, you’ll be in a very good routine. All you have to remember, though, is that it doesn’t stop here. You’ve got to keep at it every single day. For yourself.

Handling the holiday gift influx

Let’s be honest, many of us get a lot of stuff around Christmas time. Some of it we may be super excited about and some of it, like that bag of socks, is a bit less welcome. Either way, while new stuff is great, it usually means that we need to do something with our old stuff to make room for everything. Here’s some ideas for how to organize and store your things when Christmas gifts require you to consolidate!

1) Boxes.

Cardboard boxes are a great way to organize your stuff in a categorized, stackable way. Even better, you can pick up boxes for cheap at your local mailing or moving store. When sealed up with packing tape, boxes can be a great way to keep items safe and clean, even for a long time. Just use a permanent marker to jot down what’s in each box so you don’t forget! Keep in mind, cardboard boxes are not always the most durable, particularly if exposed to water or moisture. So, if you’re storing things in your garage or a leaky basement, consider using a storage tub or plastic box. These can typically be found at home improvement stores!

2) Storage Facilities.

Unfortunately, sometimes we have so much stuff that we can’t fit it all in our own home! That’s why remote storage facilities exist. Most of them charge a monthly fee and give you access to a secure, garage-like personal space. Some of these storage units can be small, only a couple feet wide and five or so feet deep. Others can be large, the size of a one car garage or bigger. These facilities are secure and generally well maintained, meaning that you won’t have to worry about someone breaking into your stuff or water or bugs getting to it.

3) Selling Locally.

Many of us have things that we don’t use regularly, but are actually somewhat valuable. Examples might be grills, bikes, yard equipment, tools, or old furniture. Each of these things, particularly furniture, can take up a lot of space in our house unnecessarily. If you have well kept things that you don’t use often, consider selling them. There are many sites out there, like craigslist, ebay, nextdoor, or simply social media that allow you to sell things online. Not only does it help you clean out your house, but gives you some cash as well!

4) Donating.

Particularly in the cold months of winter, many shelters are looking for useful donations. If you have extra things laying around, particularly clothes and coats, see if you can find a local shelter or charity that you can donate to. Goodwill will work in a pinch too! And, if you donate something with significant value, like a car, you can often write the donation off on next year’s taxes!

The Usefulness of Cardboard

Have you ever stopped to think about how much use you get out of a commonplace and ordinary item that probably took little time (and few resources) to make? The cheap things in your life that are almost invisible to you on the daily simply because you use them so often?

I try to take in what’s around me on a daily basis as if I’m seeing them anew. This doesn’t always work, of course, as life gets in the way of things and I’m in a rush sometimes to get other things done. But I find that when I stop to just recognize everything around me, I notice some fascinating things.

Take trees, for example. They’re literally everywhere yet sometimes nonexistent to us. And yet without them, we would be the nonexistent ones. It’s a pretty deep and wild thought, I’ll admit, but it’s absolutely true that we take our forests and wooded areas for granted. For all the environmental movements out there that promise to plant a new tree for every _____, there’s a bigger logging company busy churning out the wood and destroying the environment even more.

So when it comes to the everyday, certain things stick out. For me? It’s cardboard boxes. Everytime I come home from work, I see at least one package on a doorstep of someone’s apartment within our courtyard. And these packages are almost exclusively cardboard.

Yet that’s not the only place I see cardboard. At work, we have a lot of carbonated drinks in the fridge. What else would they be housed in but cardboard?

And I know I almost always have something made of cardboard in my truck. From what? I honestly couldn’t tell you, but I’d bet a hundred bucks there’s something made of cardboard lying in my back floorboards.

What is all of this trying to say? Mostly that we fail to see the commonplace things in our lives. This doesn’t just go for tangible objects like cardboard boxes, either. For example, I often dwell on my bad luck. Whether it’s in the video games I play or my luck with traffic lights every morning on the way to work, I often dote on the bad instead of recognizing the good. Good and bad luck likely weigh out to be pretty even in my life, yet the bad always captures my attention.

What little things should you pay more attention to in your everyday life that often escape you?

3 Fun Activities That Use Cardboard

Sometimes, the commonplace and everyday items of your house can seem invisible. You almost forget they’re there because, well, you use and see them daily. And it’s especially normal to forget about these things entirely when you’re thinking of ideas to do for crafts or just on your leisure time. Instead, you usually will go out and buy something new rather than repurposing things you already had.

Well, one commonplace thing you can definitely get mileage out of is cardboard. The thing is, getting crafty with cardboard can seem like a tough task. After all, cardboard is used for things like packaging, shipping, and storage, not fun activities, right?

Well, we’re here to provide you with some alternative uses for the cardboard you’ve likely got lying around your house. Check out these three specific ideas for cardboard you may be able to replicate.


Fairy wings, pirate swords, and robot body parts define some of the most iconic Halloween costumes, and they’re all three usually made up of cardboard in the absence of specifically made, store-bought costumes. Sometimes costumes purchased from the store can be low quality or expensive for something of higher quality, so families resort to constructing their own from time to time. What better material to use for some of these costumes than cardboard boxes?

Nintendo Labo.

This is a relatively new thing this year that uses cardboard boxes and video games. Almost seems like an impossible combination, doesn’t it? Well, Nintendo has managed to perfect the idea. While most of the minigames come with cardboard cutouts that you can piece together to make things such as a piano, camera, or other interesting items, you do have the option to make your own things instead of buying the cardboard from Nintendo. They even provide blueprints for their game’s periphery items in order for you to save money.


Oftentimes you’ll see movies or TV episodes with kids who play fought with cardboard swords or axes. I’m not sure if I speak for everyone here, but this is something I actually have not seen in person,  even when growing up. But a hobby that does use things like this? Cosplaying. The art of cosplay centers around homemade outfits that mirror those from video game and anime characters. Whether the weapons are constructed of cardboard or it’s the intricate outfit pieces, cardboard is quite malleable and shapeable while still retaining its shape, something that makes it incredibly useful for cosplayers.

Wrapping Your Candy Gifts

With the holidays just around the corner, you’ve likely started to think about what you’ll be getting your loved ones (if you haven’t already started to buy stuff). Sometimes, however, the one thing you got doesn’t seem like it’s enough. Or you’re at a total loss as to what you want to get for your distant family members.

Well, candy boxes are a staple for these situations. There’s not many people out there who won’t eat gifted candies, whether they’re chocolates, truffles, or other unique sweets.

The problem is, though, that sometimes it can seem like a cop out to get someone “just” candies. Whether it’s seen as cheap or uninspired, the thought may cross some recipients’ minds. Luckily, you can alleviate this possibility by throwing in a little bit of work to up the presentation of the gift. At the very least, spicing up the packaging will show that you put forth effort in making it look nice, and your recipient will appreciate the effort.

Here are a few ways to show you tried a bit more than simply purchasing a box of chocolates.

Ribbons and bows.

This is rather minimal in that you’re taking two strands of ribbon to wrap around the box each way to make a crossing pattern, though you can shirk the wrapping paper here. Slapping a nice bow on top of the crossed ribbons is perfect and shows it’s a gift ready to be given. This method is great when the gift is a little extra to the main gift you’re giving.


Wrapping your candy boxes in wrapping paper like any other gift is just as viable, especially if you plan to only give a box of candy and no other gifts to your recipient. At the very least they’ll realize it as a prepared gift and be thankful for the gesture, even if it’s not exactly tailored to them.


Though this is rather uncommon, you can always stack a box of candy on top of another item, whether this is in a bag or you’ve wrapped two items together in a box. Packing multiple things together creates a sense of “value” in one gift, so the candies are an extra special little find within the package.

No matter which method you choose to go with for your gift candies this year, don’t hand a box of candies to your family member with no sense of wrapping or gift presentation.