6 Simple And Cheap Life Upgrades To Improve Your Day-To-Day

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If you found yourself at the mall this weekend, (no judgement, really — I was salty when I used to work the Black Friday shifts, but never too salty about the paycheck I got after, so if you want to go out, don’t let anyone shop-shame you!) or find yourself shopping online today (cyber Monday, yassss) you might be wondering, With all of these dEaLs, what should I pick up??

I may have the answer. And not exactly an extensive Christmas shopping list, or a roundup of the best department store deals of the day — rather, it is a little list of simple and inexpensive life-upgrades that I’ve introduced to my home recently that have made my everyday life just a little bit nicer.

Obviously, none of these things are exactly ~necessities~ — just little upgrades that can take your day-to-day life-things and make them the tiniest bit better.

And, if you’re lucky, maybe you’ll find some #deals today on them.

Seriously — I went to Best Buy on Black Friday to get something, and I saw a line of a few hundred people wrapped around the Kohl’s in the same mall, because everyone was snatching up whatever awesome deal they had on pillows. Which leads me to my very first point:

1. Get some new pillows.

These are often pretty inexpensive, and to be honest, even the cheapest ones are more comfortable and offer more support than your super-old, severely worn-out ones. I like to replace mine often because I’m a big fan of a firm (and clean) pillow. But to each their own! Also, if you want to take this a step further, get new pillowcases to go with the new pillows. Consider this: our faces can get hella gross. Even if you’re washing your sheets and pillowcases weekly, that’s still a lot of face leftover on your pillow each night that you’re putting your face on again. I like to grab new pillowcases as often as possible, because they get grungy so fast.

2. Put a bunch of your little things in a bigger thing.

This is vague, but it is basically my number one life rule. Clutter is easily the most stressful thing I could possibly encounter, so even doing something as simple as putting all of my pens into a mason jar simplifies my life and makes everything a little neater, and more accessible. Look for cheap-but-cute dollar-store type accessories — little cups, jars, etc. — that you can toss your little bits into to keep everything looking polished and organized.

3. Get a slightly-nicer coffeemaker.

If coffee is your thing, and you have an extra $30-$40 in your budget, getting a new coffeemaker is always a simple (and relatively inexpensive) way to upgrade your everyday life. Example: my boyfriend was making coffee every day for us in a shitty 10-year-old coffeemaker, and I always wondered why it tasted like actual dirt. I convinced him to pick up a new one, and for under 50 bucks, every cup of coffee since has been wonderful. This life upgrade is especially important if you’re a busy bee who pretty much lives for your morning-coffee-moment.

4. Get a white noise machine.

This is my number one secret for getting the amount of sleep a normal adult human should. I have always been a pretty sleepless person, but I’m out like a light every time I turn my noise machine on. It is like magic — it has changed my life for the better (although I can’t really sleep without it now). I advise that every human person own one of these things, if possible. They are not usually too expensive, either (unless you get the super-fancy one that makes it sound like you’re dangling from a tree in the rainforest).

5. Keep all of your cords and chargers in one place.

That is, get a cute, aesthetically-pleasing bucket or basket to keep them all in. The number one thing I lose most (well, closely following my keys, which I pretty much misplace on the daily) are my chargers. I have three (yes, three) laptop chargers: one that lives in my school bag and goes everywhere with me, one that lives at home near my desk, and a spare that I keep hiding at home. I also have an iPhone charger for every single phone I’ve ever owned (and every single phone I’ve ever broken, RIP), which adds up to a pretty good number of chargers (and back-up chargers). Add this to headphones, camera chargers, and all the other technological eyesores in my bedroom, and you get a true shit show of items scattered in various locations. I’ve remedied this by keeping everything slightly charger-like or technology-related in a little basket under my desk. I always put things there when I remove them from my bag once I get home, so I never find myself frantically searching for a charger when my phone is on 1% (#blessed).

6. Get some fake plants and flowers.

This is my favorite way to decorate, because plants and flowers are so beautiful, but also can be expensive and high-maintenance. Buying a few pretty fake plants and bouquets of fake flowers is the perfect, inexpensive way to liven up your home and make it a little bit brighter and happier. Bonus — you can literally get them at the dollar store. Though, if you’re feeling like a Rockefeller, you can hit up Target for some slightly-pricier ones.

Mary writes every day for TFD, and tweets every day for her own personal fulfillment. Talk to her about money and life at mary@thefinancialdiet.com!

Image via Unsplash

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  • Tara

    I like these suggestions. The pillow one is so spot on — I got some new pillows for the bed recently because I was going to have overnight guests and the new pillows are so amazingly fluffy and firm. My bed is like a hotel bed now because we have so many pillows on it.

    I also enjoy organizing and would suggest just doing a simple rearrangement of anything that isn’t quite working. I have a really huge closet but I had storage bins stacked on a shelf in such a way that it prevented me from arranging anything else on there. This weekend I found a new place for one of the bins and now I have a lot more room to work with. It made me feel like I’d solved a major problem but it was such a simple fix.

  • I recently got a large desktop organizer with bin compartments and have been using it to store my charging cables, rechargeable batteries, digital camera, and other electronic things when not in use. It’s been life changing to have everything accessible and in one spot. I also love Bobino cable wraps. They’ve been a huge help in getting all of those cords organized.