I’ve been writing about ways to CREATE a space that you love being in—about taking the time to design a personal oasis where, as soon as you walk through the door, your shoulders relax and you feel calm. So far we’ve covered garages, bedrooms and kitchens. Today, I want to talk about a project to help you make changes that steer your house in the direction of a Peace Full Home. Then, we’ll discuss some specifics for a few other rooms.
Get a notebook (make it something pretty that you’ll enjoy writing in) and label two pages for each room in your home. Clear some time in your schedule to do this exercise, even if that means doing it one room at a time.
First, walk through each room and make a list of what you like about the space and what you don’t like. This should be from a purely personal perspective. Make notes about what “feels” peaceful and comfortable and what’s chaotic and overwhelming. It could be as simple as, “love the color of this room” or, “the sofa is ugly”, to something more profound like, “this space is where I always go to unwind” or “I hate everything about this room”.
Second, walk through each room again, and view it as if your were a guest in the home. Make comments on the second page for each room. These might include, “what a lovely view into the back yard”, “wow, this person must really like roosters”, or “this place really needs to be aired out.”
These two “walk-throughs” will help you create a workbook to facilitate the changes you can make in each room. There may be some that are overwhelming, like “there’s nothing in the room that I like!”, but there are likely to be quite a few that could be accomplished simply. Compare what you wrote for each room from a personal vs. a guest perspective. Of course you want people to be comfortable when they’re in your home, but what’s most important is that you feel at peace there.
Garages, Bedrooms and Kitchens were already covered. Here are a few comments to get you started thinking about other areas:
Are you really comfortable in your Family Room? Are there books that you’re interesting in reading, or that you can flip through like coffee table art books (you can often find these on clearance at book stores or online)? Is there a place to put your feet up and relax? If you watch TV in that room, can you do that without being uncomfortable (TV too far away or hung too high)? Is there easy access to the kitchen? Is the lighting adequate?
In the Dining Room can the table actually be used for dining? If not, what do you need to do to remedy that? Why not set a table and actually sit down for meals (whether alone or with people you live with) and enjoy that respite from the day? Make this space as beautiful as possible.
In your Home Office, or the place you sit down to use your computer, pay bills, or write cards, is it organized and efficient? I recently worked with a client who had EVERYTHING on his computer and no paper whatsoever in his office. For most of us that’s not practical or even desirable, and for those of us who still believe in the art of handwritten notes, having pretty stamps (you can choose some really lovely “forever stamps” now), note paper and cards beautifully organized makes sitting down and jotting a note to a loved one so much easier. Having files that are orderly and current (as opposed to sifting through a cabinet of obsolete paperwork) helps create a lot less chaos.
In the Bathroom, where you probably spend a fair amount of time getting ready for and ending your day, organization and calm are critical. Chances are good that everyone reading this has running water and the ability to simply decide to take a bath or shower. In the “majority world” (the term Majority World now often replaces the term Third World, because most people on the earth live in poorer and less-developed countries) that’s not the case. We often forget how fortunate we are to live in a way that most people would truly envy. Since we have that luxury, let’s honor it by including details that make this space serene. If you’re a person with young children and you’re rushing to get them on the school bus, or to daycare, while getting yourself ready for your “paying” job, you know all too well how important the routine in this room is. Do simple things that add beauty and comfort. Use towels that are plush (remember you don’t need an entire closet full of them), use soaps or lotions that have a scent you really like; peppermint, lavender, lemon and lime all have a soothing quality. Place a small (live) plant in a place where you can see it. Make sure you have adequate, and ideally dimmable, lighting. For many people the bathroom is literally the only place they can really be alone, so pay attention to the details.
If you have the room, create a Special Space that houses something that’s important to you. One of those spaces for me is my “gift wrap center”. It’s downstairs in, what I like to call, the “lower level”. I know that for most people this would probably seem crazy, but for me it works great. I buy things during the year when I see something that would be “perfect” for someone I love, and I put it in one of the cabinets beneath a huge counter top. On the wall, behind my workspace, there are shelves filled with rolls of beautiful ribbon, gift-wrap and labels. For me, it’s important to have the details right and it’s one of the areas in my home that makes me happy.
The reason all this attention, to the rooms in our home, helps with a home full of peace is because EVERY little thing that we do to make our lives more enjoyable and less frustrating, gives us space for Peace to come in.
Care about your home not only for when you’re entertaining guests but, more importantly, for the way YOU want to spend your time. By lifting up your experience of living, you open the door to making other areas of your life more meaningful. Allow your creative spirit to come through and live in a space that reflects who you are. It doesn’t necessarily take a lot of money but it does take a lot of care…..for yourself.
©2014 peace full home™
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