5 tips: How to maintain a “sosyal” lifestyle on a budget

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  1. Take advantage of the freebies

They’re called freebies for a reason and being in the world of sosyals you get alot of these. From free nespresso coffees at the office, tap water refills, gym pass, shuttle services to free travel experiences. This heavily depends on the company of course but multinational companies should have these.

Most of the meals i post? See below.

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Them gym selfies? See below. Those were just some of the complimentary from the companies i have worked for.

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Freebies such as free decent coffees let you cut alot from your everyday coffee budget. Why spend $5-$10 (100-300php) on an overpriced cup of coffee if you can get your morning boost from your office’s pantry for free? You can spend that 1000php (200php x 5days) on better things, girl. Also, taking a picture of your starbucks coffee as a sosyal symbol is so 2014!

Savings: $100/4000php a month

 

2.   Practice the art of meal prep

Let’s be honest here. We all know that food is our biggest weakness and that explains why it accounts for our biggest spending. If you’re blessed enough to have your mom cook for your every meal then you may skip this tip.

But if you happen to live alone, one way to cut your food spending is preparing your meals in advance. Having meals already prepared for you in your fridge, it eases the stress of having to think what you will have for lunch. You could also get strict on your diet as you’ll know what goes into your food. And if you’re like me who doesn’t have a bit of culinary cell in her system, this might be the right time to get those tasty recipe videos into your own kitchen.

If you know that you have prepared meals at home waiting for you,  you won’t even have to think about getting that take away or eating out on your way home. It also allows you to bring your own lunch to work instead of ordering that C3 from jollibee which costs 115php or that mcdonalds meal for $10. Plus bringing your own meal gives out the idea that you’re responsibly taking care of yourself. Sosyals take care of themselves well. Kaya go donya! prepare your meals na.

Savings: $200/2300php a month

3. Research

Utilize the internet for getting deals, promos and cheaper alternatives for your planned purchase. There are blogs and online reviews that you could read through if you’re looking for a firsthand experience of the product. Blogs usually give out cheaper alternatives to the product without compromising the qulaity. Why not ‘di ba?

Alot of promo codes can be found online, use it. For instance you could order 2 large pizzas from dominos for $12 instead of their normal price of $25. Western union charges $5 for remittance fee to the Philippines but i do mine for free through a promo code. See below.

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I also got a $20 discount from my uber ride through a promo code. Before making a purchase, i always look up if the product or the service has a promo code to see if i could save up some before checking out.

Same tip goes when you’d like to travel because we all know sosyals travel alot. You can get affordable airline deals online you just gotta subscribe to the airlines’ social media accounts as they usually post sale dates there. Like for instance, i got a plane ticket to boracay for just 200php ($5). It is possible to travel on a plane for 200php, yes!

Savings: varies on your purchases

4. Initiate barkada night outs

Imagine if you volunteer to set your saturday night with friends, lakas makasosyal nun! You set the time and the venue of your night-out which means you get to choose where. Of course being a sosyal on a budget, this allows you to choose a place that’s suitable to your walwal budget. It may look very socialite but it’s actually economical.

Disclaimer: This tip only applies when your friends are not kupal and your circle practice the ancient tradition of chipping-in or in our jologs term – KKB.

Savings: varies on how much you walwal

5.  Invest in your own water bottle

Water is good when you want to achieve sosyal skin. Water is good when you want to lose those extra pounds. Water is good to mend cravings. Water is good to temporarily reduce your hunger while you’re on your way home to your meal prep. Water is good fro you. But buying water on a bottle is not good for the environment and not good for your bank account as well.

Invest in a water bottle that you could carry with you at work or at uni. If you buy a bottled water everyday that costs about 15php or $3, that is a huge savings by doing a simple act like having your own water bottle.

It is never sosyal or even classy to add up to the earth’s degradation, mga donya.

Savings: $60/300php a month

Being financially responsible does not require so much of lifestyle change. You can still be sosyal on a tight budget you just have to find ways and be creative.

I’ll tell you the rest on my next boring office hours 😜

-E

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Things Guys Consider “Flexing” but are Actually Annoying

I’m listing these things based on my own annoyance level hence these are highly subjective. What i find annoying might be cute to other people and if you’re one of them people, HOW COME?! Also, if i may define what “flexing” is to my co-titas, it’s the generation Z word for showing off or pagpapacute. I’m so sorry in advance for the poor writing skills because again, i am not a writer i’m just makuento.

 

Bragging about being rich

When a guy talks or posts about his expensive shoes or his cars or anything that has got to do with him being rich to impress you –like chill child! Those are not yours. Those are your parents’. We all know you have not worked a single minute of your life and have yet to earn your own money. Till then, you don’t get to brag what you have not worked hard for. Trust me, it’s not cute when guys show off their wealth so much.

Alam mo ‘yung mga lalakeng kulang na lang magdeclare ng SALN ginawang BIR ang social media.  Ironic enough these are the same guys who accuse women of being gold diggers. That’s like going fishing and crying when your bait gets taken by the fish you failed to catch.

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Bad mouthing other women

I don’t know about you but this is one of my red flags when i meet a guy. When they constantly talk about their ex in a degrading way or other women for that matter, you know he’s problematic. Nothing’s added to their pogi points when they talk crap about the women they previously dated. That is also not putting their name in a good light no matter how low they put women’s name down to elevate theirs. That is just them pathetically showing their true manners.

It’s also annoying when guys compliment you while downplaying other women. At least once you must have heard a guy say “Mas maganda ka naman kaysa sa kanya. Siya puro make up lang”. When he could have stopped at “maganda ka naman” without the “mas”. It’s never flattering when guys pit women against each other. Hindi nakaka-cute.

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Sending buffed pictures (or nudes) out of nowhere

This is a true story. I once received a random mirror selfie from this guy that shows his abs –like what the f*ck am i supposed to do with that. It was just out of the blue. It made me furious that i had to call him out right then. Now we’re no longer in speaking terms and i’m glad that we are. That gesture was just nasty to say the least.

Guys: no matter how well-sculpted your abs are, you don’t send half naked mirror selfies to women who did not ask for it. No you’re not blessing our eyes. If that’s your way of fishing compliments, you’re not getting them at least from most women. Next time you send us a picture randomly, make sure it’s a picture of your dog. Other than that, we don’t want it.

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‘Liking’ posts from 2011

Funny how some guys think reacting to your pictures from when you still call yourself emo_pRincesxz_143 is a good idea. I mean why. I don’t get them guys talaga, Darla.

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So yup. I have a lot more on my list but i’ll save the rest to myself because i might start sounding like a tita soon enough. Reiterating that other women might not feel the same way but i’m just putting these out there in hopes that guys who tick off the list will reconsider their life choices. (char!)

 

13 Things I Did for Self Care Over the Last Month

At the end of the day all you have is yourself, sabi nga doon sa caption sa selfie nung friend mo sa facebook ‘di ba? Let’s face it, you’re not going to be living with your family forever. Even if you do, no one even them can take care of you better than yourself.

I have listed 13 things that I did over the last month for the sake of self-care. This is in hopes to inspire you to reflect on what more could you do to better take care of yourself.

  1. Social media detox

I am so guilty of over sharing on social media. I share my thoughts, my breakfast, my boyfriend’s breakfast, almost everything has been left in the open. This is why as part of my self-care routine, I permanently deleted twitter. Over the last couple of years, I’ve let an app listen to my thoughts and rants. Na-realize ko na hindi pala dapat kung sino sino lang yung nakakakita sa ganda ng utak mo. Para pala dapat ‘yun sa mga piling tao lang because you’re sharing an intimate part of you.

However, I can not delete facebook as that is the only way i could talk to my family —waw yes para-paraan my friend!

 

2.  Read more library books

I have developed a weird obsession with libraries these days which is in contrast to my usual preference of ebooks. I have 4 library cards for 4 different public libraries, how about that! It’s good to take a time off your screen once in a while. Plus the experience of going to a library, come on who doesn’t love the smell of books.

Over the last 4 weeks I was able to read 5 books, same number of books I’ve read in the whole of 2018! Books i’ve read are as follows: The Girl Before (JP Delaney), Believe Me (JP Delaney), The Grownup (Gillian Flynn), The Wife Between Us (Greer Hendricks) and The Shining (Stephen King).

I don’t think I’m stopping this obsession anytime soon.

 

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Look at my tan thank you hahaha

 

3. Eat Clean

My goal was to eat lesser processed foods and eat more whole foods. I used to drink bubble tea at least twice a week, drink soda thrice and eat out once a week. For the last month I’ve had one bubble tea, one glass of soda and twice of outside dining.

I also used to stock up ice cream and snacks on my pantry but this month I didn’t. Why get yourself into all the stress of feeling guilty over the food you eat when you can simply eat clean.

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My groceries for a week
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What I ate for the second week

 

4. Prepare your own food

An instalment of #3, eating clean is not just about the healthy side it is also the process of preparing your own food. Going to the grocery have been my sort of therapy on the weekends. I list what I want to eat for a week, head to the grocery, and google how to make it. It saves money, it is healthy, and trust me: it is fun.

 

5. Say No

Sometimes when a favor is asked of me, it is often I WILL TRY even if i can’t or i don’t want to. It was hard to say “no” and not feel bad about it especially at work, but i did. I haven’t realized till now how liberating the word no could be.

“Nabusog ka ba sa lunch?”

Me: NO.

There i said no. Jk.

 

6. Filter your circle

Yes, Susan. Galing mo mag-filter ng pictures pero mga taong nakapaligid sa’yo di mo ma-filter.

When you have people in your circle who make you feel bad about yourself, who feed your insecurities, who do things that are against your values, it’s time to let them go.  Minsan kasi we underestimate the impact of bad company. Iniisip natin na okay lang makisama sa mga ganitong tao kasi resilient naman tayo sa peer pressure, pero most of the time hindi lang natin napapansin na nagiging katulad na din natin sila.The quality of your future has got a lot to do with the quality of your present circle of friends. Be with people who help you up and love to see you up there.

As for me, madali lang ako mag-filter ng friends kasi iilan lang naman ‘yung pinapapasok ko sa buhay ko. I regard friendship as something deep. I’m happy with just 3 friends. I can proudly say that these 3 people outside of my family are enough to get me through life.

 

7. Declutter

Go full on Marie Kondo on your things. Declutter your room or your wardrobe or your study table. Get rid of the things that.. wait for it.. do not spark joy. A clear space brings a clear mind. Mas nakaka-positive ng outlook sa buhay ang malinis na kuarto.

You could: A) Recycle B) Sell C) Donate —just don’t dump them in the garbage chute. I highly encourage responsible waste disposal.

 

8. Create a pick-me-up playlist

We get those days when we feel tired of everything or when we just feel sad all of a sudden. It is good to have a playlist to run to that could cheer you up. Be mindful of the lyrics because you’re feeding your mind. What you plant in there is what grows out of you.

I wrote something about the songs for every occasion that I thought you might want to check out.

 

9. Follow a simple skin-care routine

A skin care routine that you could do everyday, even if you’re tired from work. Yung puede mong gawin kahit lasing ka o kaya isang mata mo na lang ang gising. It is best to keep it simple and do it regularly than have a 10 step routine that’s almost impossible to do on a regular.

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Wala talaga akong right magbigay ng skin care advice pero these are what I use twice a day. I remove my make-up with that garnier wipes then i wash my face with that cetaphil which i also use for my body. After washing, toner naman using that rose thingy from garnier. And moisturizer from cetaphil.

 

10. Wake up early on a weekend just because

Aren’t we all guilty of over sleeping on weekends? But for once, try waking up relatively early on a weekend. No reason at all not for an errand nor of your mom’s wake up call. Just wake up early, go out, breathe and simply appreciate life.

I did this every Sunday morning with a cup of green tea and my gratitude journal. It kept me grateful and more positive in life.

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Sunday morning routine ko mag-quiet time sa pool namin with a green tea                                            lakas kasi makashala hahaha

 

11. Keep track of your financials

If there’s one thing I am proud of myself, it’s gotta be my frugality. Since i started working i tend to be more cautious when spending. Although i have never sat down and write where my money went so this month i did. It felt like i have more control over my finances when i see them on a paper rather than in my head. This is coming from someone who does not shop impulsively, so what more could it do for someone who does.

Stressful ang buhay ‘pag di ka financially responsible. Being magastos is not cute. If you’re 20 something and you still don’t know how to manage your money well, then you should reconsider your life choices.

 

12. Listen to your body

When your eyes are shutting down, you have to sleep. When you ran out of breath doing the slightest movement, you have to workout more often. When your lips are too dry, you have to drink more water. When your body speaks, you have to listen.

I have been hitting the gym after my 9-5 working hours to reduce stress and sleep better. I used to drink coffee every single day but i decided to stop for the last month because of the heartburn I’ve been getting out of caffeine. Self care is listening closely when your body speaks.

 

13. Assess your stress management

Dealing with stress is a personal thing to do. It is not a one size fits all. For myself, to cope up with stress was to eat. Whenever there’s a lot going on, i crave for anything unhealthy —chocolates, ice cream, cakes, name it. That was because i led my mind to think that it’s the only way to deal with it.

Hence for this month, i went to the gym instead of heading to the nearest fast food. I worked out rather than splurge on food and of course it was a better outlet. We have to be aware of the things we do to manage our stress and asses if it’s doing us good in the long run.

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There you go. Those are the things I rigorously did over the last month to prioritize caring for my self. Everyone wants this life —live alone, live freely, so they aim for financial freedom. What they fail to realize is that the first step to living independently is self-care.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Underrated Songs for Every Situation

When inlove: Kiss Me -Ed Sheeran

Settle down with me
And I’ll be your safety
You’ll be my lady

 

For a Sunday morning chill vibe: Fast car -Tracy Chapman

And your arm felt nice wrapped ’round my shoulder
I had a feeling that I belonged
I had a feeling I could be someone, be someone, be someone

 

Reminiscing your kalokohan with the bestie:Oath -Cher Lloyd

Wherever you go, just always remember
That you got a home for now and forever
And if you get low, just call me whenever
This is my oath to you

 

Feeling extra senti:Wake up -Coheed and Cambria

I’ve earned through hope and faith on the curves around your face
That I’m the one you’ll hold forever..
If morning never comes for either one of us,
Then this I pray to you wherever

 

First two months of a heartbreak: I never told you -Colbie Calliat 

I miss everything about you (still you’re gone)
Can’t believe that I still want you (loving you I should have never walked away)
And after all the things we’ve been through (I know it’s never going to come again)

 

When acads gets the best of you: Stuck in the middle -Boys like girls

Someday things will be perfect
It will be worth it all this time
Well, this time we’re stuck in the middle
I know things will get better

 

Just sharing the song that got me through life: Nothing is impossible -Planetshakers

Deep down I
Know that you’re here with me
I know that, you can do anything

 

Bad days:Please don’t stop the rain -James Morison

Oh, we’re a little closer now
And finally what life’s it’s all about
Yeah I know you just can’t stand it
When things don’t grow your way
But we’ve got no control over what happens anyway

 

Missing someone in heaven: Temporary home -Carrie Underwood

The room is filled with people he loves
And he whispers don’t cry for me
I’ll see you all someday
He looks up and says “I can see God’s face”

 

When you need your John Mayer fix: New light -John Mayer 

What would it matter if your friends knew?
Who cares what other people say anyway
Oh, we can go far from the end
And make a new world together baby

(HELL YESS PLEASE, JOHN!!!)

 

Still thirsty for John Mayer: You’re gonna live forever in me -John Mayer

Life is full of sweet mistakes
And love’s an honest one to make
Time leaves no fruit on the tree
But you’re gonna live forever in me
I guarantee, it’s just meant to be

 

 

To remind you of that high school kilig: Superman -Joe Brooks

So why do I disappear when you come near,
It makes me feel so small,
If I could read your mind,
Girl would I find, any trace of me at all.

 

To remind you of life’s blessings: Good life -One republic

Sometimes there’s airplanes I can’t jump out
Sometimes there’s bullshit that don’t work now
We all got our stories but please tell me
What there is to complain about

 

Because a single One republic is not enough:I lived -One republic 

I owned every second that this world could give
I saw so many places, the things that I did
Yeah with every broken bone
I swear I lived

 

For a nililigawan: Smile -Uncle Kracker

Even when you’re gone
Somehow you come along
Just like a flower poking through the sidewalk crack and just like that
You steal away the rain and just like that

 

After the fight which made you realize things: Life after you -Daughtry

All that I’m after is a life full of laughter
Without you God knows what I’d do
All that I’m after is a life full of laughter
As long as I’m laughing with you

 

Me and my boyfriend’s song that could also be yours: Your universe -Rico Blanco

You hold me like I’m the one who’s precious
I hate to break it to you but it’s just
The other way around
You can thank your stars all you want but
I’ll always be the lucky one 

hi labs! ❤

 

Road trips:Shotgun -George Ezra

The south of the equator, navigate it
Gotta hit the road, gotta hit the road
Deep-sea diving ’round the clock, bikini bottoms, lager tops
I could get used to this

 

Something to take you back to your emo days (aside from tonight and fall for you): Nice piece of art -FM Static

You make me feel like a lavender sweater
And I’m caught in bad weather, in my Volkswagen Jetta
You make me feel like a complete work of art
When I’m just falling apart a really nice piece of art

 

Speaking of emo, here’s a break-up song: Cat and mouse -The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

We made plans to grow old,
Believe me there was truth in all those stories that I told.
Lost in a simple game cat and mouse are we the same people as before this came to light?

 

Break ups deserve another song: High hopes -kodaline

I remember it now, it takes me back to when it all first started
But I’ve only got myself to blame for it, and I accept that now
It’s time to let it go, go out and start again
But it’s not that easy

 

Because Kodaline’s lyrics are just: One day-Kodaline

You always try to see yourself
Through the eyes of someone else
Through the eyes of someone else
Too shy to say that you need help

 

Is it just me or this makes life more indie: Riptide -Vance Joy

I just wanna, I just wanna know
If you’re gonna, if you’re gonna stay
I just gotta, I just gotta know
I can’t have it, I can’t have it any other way

 

A good flight song: Carousel -Bamboo

‘Cause I’m just gonna live my life
Pick up the pieces of what’s been left behind
Bring back the memories of that special time
No doubt, no fear, no question, I know what’s gotten me here
My sweet escape, hello long goodbyes

 

Something to belt out in the shower: Always Remember Us This Way -Lady Gaga

So when I’m all choked up
But I can’t find the words
Every time we say goodbye
Baby, it hurts

8 Commandments of being a good tita in 2018

  1. Thou shall not comment about someone’s weight

Especially titas when they see us after years they tend to greet “uy tumaba ka!” instead of asking how we’re doing or instead of a mere hello. Then they’ll start recommending us dietary supplements or teas that could “help” with our weight. Tita, we don’t need your constant reminder that we’re fat or we’re too thin because we have mirrors too you know.  And making us feel bad about our body during family gatherings, especially family gatherings, does not help with making the vibe very comfortable. Yes you may be genuinely concerned about our health but there is a right time and a right place for that.

 

2. Thou shall not ask about somebody else’s salary

Although this might be out of personal preferences, i still think it’s not very classy to ask about other people’s salary. I once had a guy ask me how much do i make and that’s it. I have chosen not to talk to him ever again. I don’t know. That just makes everything awkward for me. It’s fine for my immediate family to ask because they have the right to know. But a person i just met or a colleague or a friend i just met through facebook – why do you want it for?

And at this age, it’s not really about the digits in our salary anymore. It’s more of the satisfaction our job gives us and how much we love what we’re doing.

 

3. Thou shall not be nosy about other people’s plates during parties

This is an embarrassingly funny trait that filipinos have. Whenever i’m at a filipino party, there are always those titas that look at how much food do guests have on their plates. Worse is that they speak their minds too much that it’s cringe-y.

We’ve all heard the:

“Hindi ka naman gutom ano?”

“Marami pang kakain. Wag masyado!”

“Naku! mauubos mo lahat yan?!”

Just writing this and imagining these lines being said, it just makes me cringe. Tita, it’s in your guests’ discretion as to how much they can eat and it is your duty to provide food for them. They didn’t get invited and travel all the way just to be ridiculed by you. Hinay hinay po sa pagbabantay sa pancit mo. 

 

4. Thou shall not pressure anyone into getting married through your insistent questions about wedding bells

Welcome to 2018 po! Brief ko lang po kayo that not everyone wants to tie the knot. Please stop pressuring long term couples or even singles to rush things up because there are many things to consider before thinking about getting married. Major things like financial stability, career and how to post the perfect caption to our proposal video on facebook.

Again, welcome to 2018 po Tita! Where people are more cautious when it comes to commitment due to the number of failed marriages from your generation.  We don’t want to do the same mistakes as your generation did therefore give us the time. Time to think things through and figure out life without the pressure from you.

 

5. Thou shall not be a homophobe

I find this topic a bit sensitive as i might cross various lines by elaborating this more. I just want to briefly say that i have not heard of any religion that tells their congregation to go and hate people.

If you don’t like the LGBTQ+ community, just keep your opinion to yourself and at least respect them as people. You are a tita and titas are not suppose to be peddlers of hate.

 

6. Thou shall not post social media patama

I have seen a lot of these from my social media feed and i’m not going to lie, my younger self is guilty too. Tita, have you heard of private message? You can use it po for free.

You can message your kapitbahay whose dogs have been eating your slippers instead of posting it on facebook.  You can also go talk to your husband who got home drunk again last night, he’s probably just in your kitchen trying to cure his hangover. You two can talk instead of you posting and ranting about it on your social media page.

You know what they say: do not wash your dirty linen in public, use a washing machine. Kidding aside, you can’t go posting about your personal problems on facebook and get mad when people get involve.

 

7. Thou shall not victim blame

“wag kang magpapagabi para ‘di ka marape”

“suot ka ng suot ng ganyan pero magrereklamo ka kung binastos ka?”

I had alot of firsthand experiences of victim blaming especially from filipino elders. Tita, listen to me carefully. Rape happens because there are rapists. So do not raise your daughters believing it is their shorts or them being outside the house at 8pm that leads to rape. However, do raise your sons not to look at women as something they could disrespect and violate whenever they want just because they can.

 

8. Thou shall not deem other’s misfortune or disability as something laughable

Stop sharing videos that make fun of other people falling, hurting themselves, or anything that harms innocent people for the sake of being “funny”. It is never funny to hurt others.

And I’ve also seen videos and memes that poke fun on disabilities be it mental or physical. Actually just yesterday, i came across a meme shared by a facebook friend that has an anorexic girl with a caption “over diet”. Tita, hindi po over diet ang tawag doon. Eating disorder po yun. And if you may, you can read about these disorders in the internet so you could be more sensitive about sharing things on facebook.

 

I wrote this because i had too much time today at my office desk. And because i know a lot of people who still are not aware of these things.

Till the next boring office hours.

-E