My favorite apartments in Dallas, TX

Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

Even though our lease ends in July, we are already hunting for a new apartment – because we love it. We love exploring all our options for new homes, love seeing different neighborhoods in Dallas and love fantasizing about a new phase of our life in the future. We have toured many luxury apartments in Dallas (twice now!) already, both high rise and mid rise, both modern and more traditional. These are my faves so far, they are all in the $2500 price range.

Keep in mind: we prefer to really be IN Dallas city. If you’re interested in the suburbs like Plano and Arlington, I’ll make another blogpost about those properties later.

1. The 23

This modern luxury high rise in Victory Park is the perfect combo of luxury and affordable(ish), between Downtown and Uptown. I love the Victory Park area for it’s cleanliness, modern finish and restaurants, bars and shops in the area. The 23 has great floor plans, awesome amenities and is still a very new and safe building. I’d move into The 23 for the location, modern amenities and clean looks. Check out their website here.

2. The Brady

This is a very well known classic, and therefore in my opinion a little bit overpriced. But it might be worth it, because there is really nothing I don’t like about this property. Their rooftop pool is beautiful, the location is very quiet yet central in Uptown, they have private access to the Katy Trail AND the property overall is beautiful. If you don’t mind a bigger building with smaller units (for your money), you’ll love living in this famous place! Check out their website here.

3. The Taylor

The Taylor is in the same area as The Brady, but I’d say is a little bit more dated. Don’t worry – they are renovating the units as we speak, and have renovated their amenities last year, so this property is beautiful! Very cozy yet modern, and even though their pool is on the ground floor I’d love to hang out there. I’d move into The Taylor for the location, the kind staff and the trendy-looking amenities. This place feels like home quickly! Check out their website here.

4. Residences at the Grove

Residences at the Grove is a great option if you love the Westvillage area. This fairly new property has great floor plans and a lovely pool with a view on downtown. When we entered this building, we instantly knew it was a great option for us. This place is modern but colorful and has GREAT amenities. The kitchen has a very luxury feel and you’ll live right in the center of Uptown Dallas (which I think is the place to be). Check out their website here.

5. Armstrong at Knox

Last but not least, I want to mention Armstrong at Knox. Even though we were not instantly in love with this place, I know taste is very subjective and this is a really great property if you love the Knox/Henderson area. Right between all the restaurants and shops Knox has to offer, and you’ll live RIGHT NEXT to Trader Joes! We liked the style and feel of the amenities, and if you don’t mind narrow hallways this might just be your next home. Check out their website here.

Want to see more?

Watch my full Youtube playlist of apartment tours in Dallas here.

5 Products that help my health

Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

Since moving to the US, I’ve been feeling a lot less healthy than I did in The Netherlands. Small issues with my health started around 6 months into living here, and even though we live the exact same (quite healthy) lifestyle as we did before, we realized being healthy takes a lot more effort in Texas. So besides eating very healthy and moving my body regularly, I now rely on these products to reach my maximum health as well:

1. Silica

In the past few years, my hair has gotten thinner and more brittle. I guess a large part has to do with age and genetics, but recently I heard more and more people talk about Silica as a supplement for better hair. It also helps with bones, skin in nails, but this is just a bonus for me as I don’t have problems in those areas. A liquid version helps with absorbtion (if you’re Dutch, try the Vitakruid one).

2. Athletic Greens

Just make sure I have all the nutrients I need, I like to take Athletic Greens every morning. This high quality, naturally sourced multivitamin had almost everything you can think of and in the right amounts for optimal absorption. Even though AG1 is quite expensive for a multivitamin, I really feel the difference when I take it, compared to when I don’t. Also, I prefer that it’s a drink instead of just another pill to take. Read my full review here.

3. Collagen

I probably don’t have to tell you that collagen is related to healthy skin, hair, nails and bones. I like the use and taste of Vital Proteins, as I put it in my smoothie which I have 3-4 times a week. I currently have the pink ‘beauty’ edition because I initially wanted it for my skin, but they have other colors with differently sourced collagen and different benefits.

4. Superhuman app

If you wanna be the healthiest version of you, investing in your mental state is key. Stress, negative thinking and overall unhappiness do influence the health of your body. Mimi created meditations for every time of day, and for every type of occasion. Whether you wanna stress less, think bigger or release anxiety, she has what you need. I especially like the short meditations as it only takes me 3 minutes a day to feel better.

5. Huel

Huel is a great meal or snack replacement when you’re craving something sweet and don’t want to be unhealthy. Huel actually contains many nutrients which make it a full and high quality meal. This is not regular your skinny shake or protein powder! I also love that there’s no protein or stevia flavour. We have the black protein (lower in carbs) edition, since we eat enough carbs in Texas, haha.

Please note: the links to the products are affiliate links, this means I get a small commission if you buy via this link. This does NOT influence the price you pay or my opinion on the product. So if you are going to buy this product anyway, please use this link and help a girl get $$! Thank you so much.

Why I stopped (bullet)journalling and goal setting

Deep ✨, Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

I know, I know. I’ve been the biggest advocate of journalling and goal setting since the start of my blog. And it truly worked for me and the phase of life I was in. I reached 90% of all my goals without too much effort and completely changed my life and mindset around. But other seasons have come, and journalling became harder and harder. It actually completely died on me. And that’s fine.

I need to do better

Because a large part of the reason why I wanted to reflect and set goals in the past few months came from a negative place. It hasn’t always been this way – my bullet journal used to be a tool living in that sweet spot between being completely happy with who you are, while acknowledging that there are things to do better. But it became more and more negative the longer I reflected and set goals. It became negative. It started coming from a mindset of ‘I’m not good enough so I have to be better’ and ‘I’m not developing unless I set goals’.

So the goals became routine, reaching them became boring, and not reaching them started to feel like utter failure. I can’t really tell why it lost its magic, and I hate to say it but the only thing I can come up with is this: I learned the trick, the trick became old, it lost its sparkle – so I started seeing right through it.

See, I once was addicted to the feeling I got when I worked on goals and reached them. I was high on the monthly reflections, seeing what I did better than before, checking off the boxes I set. But like any addiction you get used to the feeling, and you start to need more in order to be satisfied. For me that looked like more goals, higher goals, in less time.

But that doesn’t really work: life also happens, and there is only so much effort you can put in. Not any goal is reachable if you set the bar too high. And I started getting either unfulfilled, or really, really bored. And on top of that I lost the ability to dream: if it was not a goal I was actually going to work towards, it didn’t deserve to be in my mind. Where’s the fun in that?

The magic lost

Because you see, that sweet spot of loving who you are, but continuously setting goals to be better only really works long term for people who aren’t smart enough to really self-reflect. No offense there, but the smart guy honestly just watches himself from a distance: writing in his bullet journal day by day, trying to stay in the sweet spot and thinking – what the hell am I doing there? And what am I going to do there the rest of my life? Setting bigger and bigger goals until I break OR become a god?

The point is, you can’t because the dopamine wears off. You remember the good feeling you had when you reached your first 10 to 50 goals, but then it just becomes repetitional. You trick yourself into thinking that it feels good but it doesn’t anymore. Because again, the smart guy knows that feelings are just feelings. The smart guy knows that the feeling you learned to enforce was just chemicals in the brain, and now the chemicals ran out.

So they know that goal-reaching is never exponential. Honestly, it can’t be. The line of life is pretty flat or maybe a little bit linear, with some ups and downs sure, but there is no ‘superhuman’ state we can accomplish. And we don’t have to. Because the normal functioning human being already learns and teaches themself, already develops and continuously grows as a person. That’s part of being human.

The human condition

And I’m not saying I don’t want to dream, reach for things or accomplish goals. We need to have goals as humans, that’s part of our biology (more on that here). I’m just saying I don’t need a journal or morning routine for that anymore. I’m tired of treating myself and my life as a program or machine that needs to perform constantly, and therefore needs monthly check-ups or upgrades. So I think I’m going to get rid of the ‘super’ and just be -human for a while.

The magic is not in the feeling of reaching goals. The magic is not the dopamine I got from trying to better than anyone else, or outperforming myself. The magic was in life itself and being human all along. Or as RuPaul says:

Smart or sensitive people can get bitter when they find out that nothing is what it seems, when things lose their magic. Yes, life is an illusion, but don’t stay there – don’t play along. There’s a step beyond it. Life is an illusion – so let’s party.

Don’t take yourself so seriously. I’m learning to just be – and dream. Gosh, I missed just dreaming.

xx Coco

New year, new goals

Deep ✨, Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

The year of 2022 has finally come. I’m a big fan of reflecting on the past year, and setting goals for the new one. I do it every year, and every year I’m surprised by how many of my goals I actually reach. What are my goals for 2022? I always set many (I actually have 16 this year), so I’ll tell you about the most important ones.

Going on solo (day)trips

I’m a very social person and I like to experience life with my friends, family and husband. But I’m also an only child, a scorpio and a very spiritual being – so I need my quiet time. Exploring new places or going into nature by myself is something I really enjoy, but don’t do too often.

It always humbles and excites me at the same time, so in 2022, I’m planning on doing more trips my myself. Even if it’s just for a day.

Dry January

My relationship with alcohol has always been a difficult one. I wouldn’t say my usage is problematic, but I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with it, and therefore find it hard to find that sweet spot or balance.

Last year, I tried dry January for the first time and I loved it. It was a very spiritual and powerful month for me, that I extended to six weeks. I learned a lot about myself and felt a lot healthier afterwards, so I’m looking forwards to the same benefits this year.

Reading at least six books

I know reading six books in a year doesn’t seem like a lot to some people. I’ve heard people say they wanted to read 20 or even 50 books this year. But I am not much of a reader, I don’t find it relaxing and I have not yet found the genre that I really love.

So my goal for 2022 is to at least read one book every two months. And even though this sounds doable, I know I will still have to try hard and commit as reading is not in my system yet. For Christmas, I got a Kindle so hopefully this helps me with my goal. If you have any tips on how to make reading more easy, let me know! πŸ™‚

Making money online

I am quite hesitant to share this goal with you, as it seems like such a big goal and kind of ‘out there’ to me. Since I started this blog last year, I’ve been wanting to extent my entrepreneurial goals and actually make some money from online projects. As I want to keep this blog as pure and real as I can, I’m not actively striving to make money of off this blog.

I am, however, planning on two different projects for 2022. One has to do with meditation, and one has to do with making videos. But as Anna Bey taught me not to overshare before success, I’m going to say any more on this topic other than: stay tuned!

What are some of your goals for 2022? I’m curious to know. πŸ™‚

xx Coco

Athletic greens review

Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

So, we are two months in on the Athletic Greens. We (my fiancΓ© and I) initially started drinking this supplement because we wanted to make sure we get all the nutrients we need, without having to stress on food too much. And we do. But what we gained is a lot more. Let me give you the pro’s and con’s of this green morning-drink.

The quality

Before we start, I need to tell you that we did a lot of research when we were looking for a supplement. Athletic Greens is hands down the most complete, high quality supplement out there. Not only does it contain almost every vitamin and mineral you need from very good resources; it also contains enzymes, probiotics and fibre.

On top of that, the ingredients are perfectly proportioned to be as easily digestible as possible for your body – so you actually benefit from all the nutrition that’s in there, and are not simply paying for very expensive pee. So, if you’re looking for a supplement, Athletic Greens is really one of the best out there.

The taste

When we started drinking it the first morning, we were surprised by the good taste. I wouldn’t say it tastes as good as green smoothie or juice (because it’s still a powder), but it wasn’t as sandy to be as some of the reviews said and the taste is pineapple-ly and spicy.

We kinda like it. But the flavour is quite strong and sometimes I have to drink a sip of water with it as it itches my throat (kinda like cinnamon), so that’s something to consider. This doesn’t bother me, personally.

The benefits

We were most surprised by how the felt amazing on the first day. Really – I’m not exaggerating – I felt like I was high on caffeine, had a very good night sleep and took some Ritalin. Except, I didn’t do any of those things. I just had one coffee in the morning and when I wanted to take my second afternoon cup, I decided it wasn’t necessary because I was so full of energy.

Sadly, this effect only lasted one day. The following days, the superwoman feeling was gone and even though I still felt better than before, I wouldn’t describe Athletic Greens as something magical. That was really just the first hit (that I was thankful for though πŸ˜‰ ), though I think it does tell us something about the effectiveness of the drink.

Some long-term effects for me, are: weight loss (easier than normal, less cravings), better sleep, slightly glowing skin and more constant energy-levels. It also cures hangovers or colds quicker than usual. I also feel that my nails are even stronger than before. And of course, the nice and calming idea that overall, I get all the nutrients I need alone is worth a lot to me.

The Cons

Honestly, I don’t feel like there are real downsides to this drink. But if I had to come up with some cons, it would be that for optimal absorption, you need to wait 30 minutes until you can eat breakfast or have a coffee. Athletic Greens can’t help this – it’s just the way our body works, but this does require some planning in the mornings.

Another more obvious downside could be that this supplement is quite pricy compared to other, lower quality supplements on the market. I personally don’t mind this, as I’m very willing to invest in my health and it makes my life easier. But I can imagine not everyone is willing to pay this amount of money as it does not replace healthy meals.

Are you on Athletic Greens or do you want to try it?

xx Coco

The self care nobody talks about

Deep ✨, Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

The concept of self care is so hot right now. Everybody does it – everywhere you go. Don’t get me wrong, I think this is SO important. But self care almost seems the new religion everyone has just adopted. And while I love talking about the spiritual side of self care (just wait for that blogpost ;)) there is a side of self care nobody seems to talk about. Because it’s dark. Or hard. And not as convenient and comfortable as ‘self care’ might sound. But I’m a scorpio, so dark and uncomfortable attracts me. Let’s dive into this.

What we like to view as ‘self care’

Usually, when we talk about self care, we often actually mean self maintenance. Painting your nails, shaving your body, or getting your hair done can feel like self care, but they do not actually make us better human beings. Or make us feel better on the long run.

We might indirectly feel better on the inside because of what we do on the outside. Maybe we feel more worthy because we take good care of ourselves, and in that way we ‘care’ for our ‘self’. But other than that, making sure your outward appearance looks good is not the same as caring for your character, your mind or your soul.

And yes, there is a deeper and traditional concept of self care that we also talk about very often. Investing in your development, reading books or meditation also count as self care. Making sure you are okay, making sure you feel good about yourself, and feeding your self-image with positive mental states is self care. But there’s the catch.

What ‘self care’ also is

In order to take real care of yourself and your happiness, and in order to really get what you deserve, you sometimes have to be really hard and difficult for yourself. Sometimes, you have to grab life by the balls, and force yourself to do something you really hate, or that really hurts, in order to take care of yourself in the long run.

And no, this isn’t as fun or convenient as taking a bath or reading a book. It doesn’t instantly make you feel better, and it doesn’t sound like something we want to call ‘self care’ at all. But it is. Self care can be really hard, dark and ugly.

So it’s time we get used to taking care of ourselves in these ways too. Real happiness, real self worth and real fulfilment require a little more effort than the traditional, easy sense of ‘self care’. Because the things that make us feel unhappy, unworthy and unfulfilled are serious problems, which require serious measures.

You need to hear this

So, don’t shoot the messenger, but sometimes self care is not going back to your toxic ex-boyfriend, even though you love him. Self care is telling your friends that you can’t hangout tonight because you need time to work through your darkness or loneliness right now.

It is NOT wasting a lot of money on shopping, drinking or getting your hair done to suppress your emotions, but actually dealing with them – ESPECIALLY when it hurts. It is eating healthy and reasonably, even though ‘you really love food’. Self care is quitting your victim-mentality, and being hard on yourself just so you can pick yourself up because, well: nobody else can do it.

Self care is facing rejection, pain and hardship. Because dealing with it and being happy in the long run is what a person who cares for herself would do. Running away and staying in your dark hole because it’s easier in the moment, is what the girl who doesn’t love herself would do (because she believes she doesn’t deserve to be happy in the long run).

And yes, forcing yourself to work towards being the girl who loves herself and moves on, instead of the girl who hates herself and gets stuck – you guessed it – also counts as self care. Let’s get it into our system.

Let me know what you think! What types of self care do you practice? And would you like a worksheet with this blog?

xx Coco

My lazy week

Deep ✨, Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

Remember my last blog? I wrote that taking time for myself right before I need it is essential in juggling many things at once. Well, this week I decided that it was time for me to put this into practice. After reaching many goals and having very busy weeks at work, I decided to be lazy this week. Let me share what this looks like, for me.

I eat whatever I want

After losing 6 kg last year, and losing almost 2 more since January, I realised that I was on the right track towards my wedding-weight, and I could let a little more loose when it comes to food. On the regular, I eat quite healthy without trying, because I eat intuitively. But the last months I had been a little more strict with myself in making exceptions.

So this week, I can eat everything my ‘pre-wedding’-me wouldn’t allow herself. I have my oatmeal with syrup instead of fruits. I have white carbs for breakfast, lunch and dinner some days. I just eat whatever I want, no restrictions. To some, this is normal. To me, this is ‘letting loose’ and allowing myself some room to breathe (and snack ;)).

I don’t have to move my body

Ok, I have to admit, I do my stretching and walking every day still. But the thought of not having to do it this week is freeing. At the beginning of the week, I already accepted the possible effects of eating less healthy and not moving my body I could see at the end of the week. So I am fine anyway, and just stretch and walk because and when I want to. Not because I make myself do it.

I reflect and socialise at work

Since I have been so busy with deadlines and tasks the past few weeks, I really needed some time and space at work to reflect on what I am doing, and to catch up with my colleagues. I planned this time in my agenda, because I felt like I deserved this.

Hard work only works for me when I can alternate with social time and reflection. I’m simply not the type of person who can be on fire every day, and that’s fine. So this week means a lot of alone time AND being social, instead of running from A to Z at work.

I am lazy

Normally, I like having a tidy house and tight schedule. This week however, I allow myself to be more lazy and nonchalant about.. well, everything. I allow myself some space to be imperfect, and to not do things that I don’t want to do. If there’s laundry on the floor – great. If there’s some dishes in the kitchen – let them be. If there’s a right way and an easy way – take the easy way.

The result was a messier house, and a lot of ‘wasted’ time doing nothing productive at all (unless tanning counts as productivity ;)). But this week, that was the absolute dream.


All in all, this week gave me some time and space to breathe, and to be more human. Being imperfect can be really liberating (a friend on Instagram thought me this last week πŸ™‚ so I decided to put this to practice right away). This week gave me room to enjoy being a human being, with small simple quirks and needs.

Phases like these show me that there is magic in the simple things, that not being superhuman is also really fun and fulfilling. It inspired me to be more raw, more myself and more vulnerable on this platform and on the Coco-Instagram. To show more of my talents, to allow more spirituality and unknown into this area. So stay tuned for that!

However, this week also reminded me why I love my planned, healthy & productive life. As sweet as it was to let loose, I can’t wait to get back on track on Monday. But first, I’m going away for the weekend to eat unhealthy food and do nothing productive at all with friends. And I’m going to completely enjoy it!

Happy Easter everyone! xx Coco

How to manage many things at once

Deep ✨, Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

Just like many other young women, I live a very busy life. I juggle multiple jobs, hobbies and relationships at once, and I do that purposely – not because I have to. I have many passions and love being social, but also want time on my own. In this way, I’m actually trying to live multiple lives. Luckily, I’m the type of person who believes you actually CAN have it all, IF you apply the following life-hacks.

What my life looks like (skip if not interested)

To give you an idea: I have a full-time job, in which I manage more projects than is possible in 40 hours, and in which I am also part of two committees that don’t overlap with my own work. I volunteer for an online philosophy magazine and run this blog & the Coco Instagram. I have more than a few friends that I see regularly, visit my parents often and I am planning a wedding with the love of my life who also gets a lot of my free-time (of course). On top of that, I meditate, read, journal, walk, stretch and listen to a podcast every day. In between the gaps, I do laundry, groceries, take care of our hamster (:)) and do other things in the house.

Yes, sometimes I do feel overwhelmed. But most of the time I am very happy and fulfilled. Here’s why and how this works for me.

Please note: I’m NOT saying you should be able to do as many things as I do. Mental and physical health is very important and also very personal! Please be aware of how much YOU can do while applying these tips.


The first thing is something I talk about a lot: setting priorities. This requires some reflection on what you really want and find important. You have to get clear on what you want in life, what and who you want to spend your valuable time on, and here we see another essential part: you have start seeing your time as valuable.

Once you see your time as something you can only spend once, and as something you want to spend on what you find useful, important and fulfilling, you can get clear on your priorities. Decide which parts of your life are essential for you, and which parts are only nice-to-haves. Do the same thing with the people in your life: who really adds to your happiness, and who are you holding on to for the wrong reasons?

If something or someone is not a priority, this doesn’t mean you have to delete them from your life completely (although, I do recommend this for the parts that really don’t add anything to your happiness). You can simply be more conscious on how much time you spend on them. It really all comes down to aligning the way you spend your time with your true values.


I already wrote a full blog on how to delegate. Delegation comes in really handy for the parts of your life that you have just decided (in the previous paragraph) are not important to you, but also not easy to remove. Think of tasks you don’t like doing, even though you see how the result of doing them adds value to your life. These parts, you can delegate.

For example, I personally delegate cleaning and cooking for the most part. I do find a clean house and eating healthy food important, but I don’t like spending my own time on these things. I don’t enjoy cleaning and cooking, so I delegate it. Of course, I realise that you need the financial means to be able to delegate these, or have a really sweet partner you can ask to do it. πŸ˜‰

If you don’t have these options, try spending as little time as possible on these things. You can learn optimising the way in which you do these ‘important, yet not worth your time’-things in the next paragraph.


The first way to optimise tasks you don’t like doing, is by creating order (in doing that specific task). This literally means you have a method of doing it, which you use every single time. Creating order saves you time because you know what to do in advance, and you know the method by which you are going to do it. So you don’t have to think of the ‘how’ every single time. Learn more on creating order in this blog.

Another way to optimise is doing things in bulk. Do you have many shops to visit, people to see, e-mails to answer or lunches to prepare? Set one timeframe to do all the things in the same category at once. Since it takes some time to travel, set appointments, get into your focus or prepare the task, it saves time doing many of the same things at one specific moment.

The last way to optimise is to simply learn from others. For example, there are many video’s on Youtube on how to do simple daily tasks more efficiently. Watching these once will save you time in the future. πŸ™‚

Stay healthy

Managing many passions and people at once does not only take a lot of time, but also a lot of energy. I find that when I stay in good shape and eat healthy, I can do a lot more in a day and with more energy and focus.

Of course, I don’t have to tell you how to work out regularly and eat healthy. So instead, I will tell you the less obvious ways in which I stay healthy (on top of moving my body and eating healthy food):

  • I use Athletic Greens every morning to make sure I have all the vitamins I need. It also makes me feel like my brain is on fire all day, so that’s a big plus!
  • I have a very regular sleep-pattern to make sure I sleep enough hours. I go to bed around 10, and wake up around 6 or 7. In the weekend, the difference is usually only an hour later (because I fall asleep if I stay up longer anyway, and I want to bounce back easily on Monday).
  • I try to notice when my stress levels are high (adrenaline rush, heartbeat, negative emotions), and try to snap out of it. Meditating regularly and having my priorities straight, helps to do the breathwork or put things into perspective in these moments (see the next paragraph).
  • I limit my alcohol intake to 1 evening a week, and not a wild one ;). I limit my caffeine intake to max. 2 cups of coffee a day. And to compensate these habits, I drink at least 3 liters of herbal tea or water a day.
  • I eat intuitively. When I’m not hungry in the morning, I don’t eat breakfast. When I’m full, I stop eating. When I crave pizza, I eat pizza. This gives my body some rest on the right moments, and keeps my mind & body from putting energy into unnecessary cravings (or bloating).

Selfcare & meditation

I already mentioned that I meditate, read, walk, stretch and listen to a podcast everyday. While this sometimes feels like a burden, most of the time it helps me stay on track and juggle many things at once. Taking good care of your mind as well as your body enables you to do all the things you want, and to do them better and more focused.

I also take baths regularly, watch a lot of mindless shows while painting my nails (it’s called selfcare baby ;)) and take breaks from work/family/friends when, or actually right before, I really need to. Meditation is a way to slip out of reality when you don’t have a lot of time. There are even 5 minute meditations that can make you feel rejuvenated in between work or in a (parked!) car. Take that time when you feel like it.

If you do more, you can do more

As you may have noticed by now, I often like to end these lists with a hack you don’t actually have to do anything for. It’s more of an insight that you can use to your advantage. This time, I’m talking about the fact that when you do more, you actually get more done.

When you have full agenda, you somehow manage to do many things in a really short amount of time – simply because you don’t have more time. Think about writing a document: if you have all day, it will probably take you all day. You procrastinate, are very critical, think it over many times. But if you only have half an hour, you simply have no time to be lazy, critical or thoughtful. It just has to be done, so somehow you manage to do it in half an hour.

If you live life like this (almost) every day, you will see that you get more done, simply because you’re agenda is fuller. Tasks that you thought were a lot of work before, are now tasks you can squeeze in between the others. I’m not saying having a full agenda is always a good idea, but it is worth noticing (and praising!) how much you can actually do in a day.

Let me know if these hacks help you ‘have it all’, and what you do to manage many things at once!

xx Coco

How to save valuable time by creating order

Geen categorie, Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

I’m not going to say I’m a super organised person, but since the horror-year of 2020 I have become one more and more. I figured that in order (ha!) to reach my goals and dreams, some organising my thoughts and planning ahead had to come into play.

Creating your dream life is simply much easier when everything is in order, and to me – also more fun. Because where order is created, space to do what you want and dream of is appears. And I find it more fulfilling to be productive and creative in an organised space, than in a chaotic one. So let’s find out how you can create more order in your chaos (if you want πŸ˜‰ ).

Decide on priorities

First of all, a big realisation is that we have a limited amount of time and space, pretty much everywhere in our lives. There are only 24 hours in a day, and there’s only so much space in your home, there’s a limited amount of thoughts your brain can handle, and there’s an ending to your money, energy and focus. So: let’s set some priorities. This is a way of creating order in itself, but it can also help us focus on where the order needs to be first, and what we want to create this new time and space for!

What is really important to you? What are your core values? What is are your non-negotiables? What do you want less of and what do you want MORE of? These are where your focus needs to be, so everything else: Good riddance to bad rubbish! It will leave more time and space for the things you love, and will leave you to take good care of them (instead of clogging your brain with the non-important stuff).

Plan more – or everything

Planning is an allergy of many people, but to many more it’s a great way to make sure that they actually do what they want and aim for. Planning more (or I as would plead: almost everything) also saves you from having to remember a lot of small things, which again only clogs your brain and uses up your energy. Having to come-up-as-you-go, remembering many things at once, not knowing where the day, week or year will take you all make for a big chaos in your life. And they are all things that keep you in the here & now, without ever having time or energy to think about where you want to go.

So no matter which medium you use – an old-school agenda, Notion, your e-calendar, a (bullet)journal or many planners, sheets and stickers – plan the details, save yourself some time (and probably some energy, money and frustration) and be the creative, productive, impulsive, venturous version of you when it comes to the important stuff.

Wake up early & have a routine

One way to start (and keep!) your day in order is to wake up at a set time everyday, and to have a routine that makes you feel clear, focused and calm. It helps to wake up early, because as the rest of the world is still sleeping, you can have a little time for what you find important – and not your boss, partner, social circle – these are the priorities we talked about in the first paragraph!

Also, if you can check off a big part of your (pre-planned!) to-do list in the morning, you will feel like you have more time to breathe in the rest of the day, and you will feel more calm and organised. I also often clean or tidy the house in the morning, so I can start the day with order (literally), and no energy will be wasted on chaos right away.

Make order a habit

A very easy and simple way to become more organised, basically takes care of itself. If you try the tricks above for a few weeks, you will feel that you are more used to order and you like having things organised. You will automatically clean up more, look ahead more, and focus more on the things you really find important. This will slowly but surely bring order into everything you do, which will have positive effects on every area of your life.

When my life is in order, my brain is too: so I’m a nicer person, make smarter decisions, can fit more into my day, eat more healthy, and have more fun. This is not because I force myself to be this neat and organised person, but because having a clean and calm environment, agenda and mind has become my habit.

Make time and space for more order

So, this leaves me to question: where can you make time and space for more order? Start with the recurring parts of your life, and ideally the ones that mean most to you. Clean up that space you have to look at multiple hours a day. Do more time-management at work. Maybe you can do things in bulk, or already plan some things that will make your life easier in the near-future.

You can really plan everything: to social events, to self-care moments, wish lists, relationships, you can even plan in time to do nothing if you need to. Some areas where I created time and space for myself, by simply creating order, are:

  • I wrote all the important dates and birthdays at the start of my journal, so I can transfer them to my months, weeks and days. I also plan ahead to think of and buy presents.
  • I have a set list of certain things that are not hard, but important for me to do every week (such as cleaning my phone and earpods, doing my nails and buying groceries). I made this a checklist so I can check it off every week when I’ve done them, not because I otherwise forget, but to save myself the time from thinking whether and when I want to do them, and how I spend my spare time. I have already done these things by making the list.
  • I wrote all the important dates and birthdays at the start of my journal, so I can transfer them to my months, weeks and days. I also plan ahead to think of and buy presents.
  • I have a set list of certain things that are not hard, but important for me to do every week (such as cleaning my phone and earpods, doing my nails and buying groceries). I made this a checklist so I can check it off every week when I’ve done them, not because I otherwise forget, but to save myself the time from thinking whether and when I want to do them, and how I spend my spare time. I have already done these things by making the list.

Of course, these tips are meant to make your life easier and more fun, not you set you up with a hundred more things to do. If you focus on creating order once a week, or even once a month, it can already help you out tons. Don’t think that by prioritising, planning or having a routine, you can’t be impulsive or go off-track.

Because even if you do, you have still created time and space in your head for more important things in the meantime! Planning does not only work if you stick to it, it also helps to empty your brain right away. It is up to you if you want to keep yourself to your own agreements (spoiler: I think life gets even more amazing if you do).

How you feel about planning? I’d love you hear your thoughts on these tips!

xx Coco

Why and how I strive for financial freedom

Geen categorie, Lifestyle πŸƒπŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

Financial freedom is often seen as some vague unreachable dream many of us don’t even dare to aim for. When we are younger, we learn that having a job is essential to live a prosperous life, and often we are conditioned into thinking that once we have this job, we will do it for the rest of out life and that will be it.

Gladly, my (millennial) generation is one of the first to doubt that this is the dream life, and – thanks to the financial crisis of 2008 – many of us have learned to value freedom, independence, variety and self-development over owning a house, buying a fancy car and climbing some corporate ladder. I would like us to take this even a little bit further: let’s talk about not having to work 40 hours a week for the rest of your life at all.

My love-hate relationship with working

Ever since I can remember, I have found the fact that I had to work the largest part of my week, for the largest part of my life, extremely unjustified and repulsive. I remember telling my mom and dad that when I grew up, I would simply refuse to work. Their advice was always to find a job that I really loved, so it would feel like less of a burden. And I did.

The job I have right now is absolutely amazing (for a job): I have a lot of freedom and responsibility, I can spend a lot of time on my own or simply socialising, and I get to do something that I love and find important. On top of that, I hardly ever get stressed and my salary is really good for my age and experience. But like I said: it’s still a job. Other people might be fine working this job for the rest of their life, but I simply don’t feel like that. My job, as amazing as it is, still feels like something mandatory, something I can’t opt out of, something I never chose to do but someone just decided that I should. (Maybe it’s part of my aversion of authority peeking through ;).

So at the end of last year, I decided for 2021 that I wanted to look for ways to not have to work 40-hour workweeks for the rest of my life. Complete financial freedom is a dream which I may not be able to realise in one year, but I decided that I could at least find something to become a little more financially free. The thought of having to work 20 or 30 hours a week for the rest of my life, is a way smaller burden to bear. And of course, we can grow as we go. Here is what I learned so far:

The richest people have multiple streams of income

Of course, our goal here is to be more financially free, not become a millionaire (for which in many cases, you’d actually have to work more, not less). But there is something we can learn from the richest people in the world that teaches us how to be more financially stable, and how to be less dependent on one job for the rest of your life. And that is to generate multiple sources of income (it is said that the average millionaire has around seven).

So the trick here is not to excel in one job, but to do a little better than average in multiple ones. This way, you spread your risks, costs and advantages, and when one fails (or you simply don’t like doing it anymore!) you always have the other ones to fall back on.

Now, I’m not saying you should take seven small day jobs. I’m saying: have a day job that you love (if you can and want to), and see what you can do on the side to generate another stream of income, or multiple ones. Eventually, your goal could be to make any one of your streams of income optional, including your initial day job. That’s what we call freedom!

Passive is massive

Now, the smartest (or only) way to generate multiple streams of income, is to make money in a passive way, not an active one. If you have a job for which you have to visit an office every day, or you have to talk to people every day, or ‘do your trick’ for a different audience every single time, this job will take a lot of your time and energy. It will also only generate an income on the days you actually show up. If we want to juggle multiple jobs like these, we will probably burn out and not feel very ‘free’.

So, what you want to do is put your time and energy in one product or service, that you can sell multiple times. Think of online products people can download, books you can write, prints you sell or video’s or courses you could get paid for. And of course, you can create multiple products like these. The point is to produce/write/upload something once, and people will be able to buy your product or service endlessly. This way, you’ll be able to cash even when you’re sleeping.

Make money with money

Another way to generate money without working (more), is to do smart things with the money you already have. Many of us are not able to buy a second house they can rent out, or invest a lot of money into profitable business, I’m aware of that. But that doesn’t mean that the only thing we can do is save up (the old fashioned way), and wait for the day we finally allow ourselves to spend it. And we do not want that either. The thing with saving money is: eventually, you can still only spend it once.

Imagine you can bring yourself to save up 100 euros/dollars/whateveryouhaves a month. This is 1200 a year, and after ten years you have 12.000. This is a lot of money, well done! What are you going to do with it? Buy a car? Remodel your house? Take a long trip somewhere? When you envision these (not even great big) goals, you can already feel what I’m trying to say here: this money took you 10 years to save, but spending it will go a lot faster, since life and the things we want to do are very expensive. And during your remodelling, travelling or driving, you will find yourself thinking: is this what I saved up for all these years?

So we have to make sure that simply having money, also makes more money, until the point it cannot be spent in one go. An easy and accessible way to do this is to invest a part of your money (long-term) into low-risk funds. There are actually many organisations which can help you with that.

Another way to invest your money wisely is to buy things that do not lose their value quickly, so you can resell them and get even, or even make a little profit. Real estate is one example of this, but it is said that these days even Chanel bags do not lose (or even increase in) their value. Make of that what you will. πŸ˜‰

You don’t have to earn money you don’t spend

One thing I realised last year, and this is probably the most accessible way to become more financially free, is: if you spend less money on the regular, you’ll have to work less in the future. Most of us are conditioned to think the other way around: I work 40 hours a week (because that’s the status quo) so I can afford the things I want, and I deserve to spend my self-made money.

However, if you’d somehow spend less money, you can spend less time working! For all the clothes, make up and out-of-the-house drinks and dinners I bought in 2020, I spent around 1/3 of my pay check. This means that theoretically, in 2020 I could have worked 27 hours a week instead of 40! Would I have sticked to this lifestyle, I would need to work these extra 13 hours again this year, and the next, and the next. Now, if I stay in my current lifestyle (and don’t upgrade much on my house or car), I can sign a 27 hour contract next year. This is freedom too!

I’m not telling you to never upgrade your lifestyle or never buy new and pretty things. I’m saying being more aware of what actually adds to your happiness, and what really doesn’t add to anything at all, could have great consequences for your financial freedom. If you learn to be happy with what you have, or if from now on you set higher standards on what you spend your money on, working full-time in the future could be just an option.

If you don’t spend the money you have now, you don’t have to work for the thing you want later in life. And if you realise that for 10 new pairs of shoes a year, a new car every 4 years, or a home-upgrade every 5 years, you’d have to work all those hours for the rest of your life, is it really worth it? Remember: what you spend, does not only influence the money you have in your pocket right now. The money you have right now, also influences what your future could look like. Money is a crazy thing, right?

Thank you so much for reading my thoughts on financial freedom. Let me know if these tips helped you out!

xx Coco