Do you live in a beautiful, well functioning space?
When you live and work in a functional, supportive space, you can thrive. The opposite is true as well. When you live or work in a space that is cluttered, unattractive and dysfunctional, it can erode your well being. As I’ve shared before, everything has energy and when you are surrounded by objects that don’t support your energy you feel drained and anxious…not uplifted or even sustained.
My recent home remodel was designed to take a space that wasn’t supporting me to a truly magnificent space. I’ve been creating lovely supportive spaces for as long as I can remember. It comes naturally to me but I’ve been told this isn’t true for most people. So I’m sharing some tips on how to create beautiful, supportive spaces (and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune).
As an example, the room in the photos is a small space serving three functions; meditation, writing and animal communication. This space works because these functions have similar requirements. Whether I’m meditating, writing or communicating with an animal, I need quiet and calm. I need a comfortable place to sit and places for my “tools”. I placed my Stressless™ recliner/ottoman in this room because it supports my back and has been my go-to chair for these activities.
On a small bookshelf I have a compact CD player for my favorite Zen12 meditation CD (Even after decades of meditating I like to let the Zen12 audio lull my brainwaves into theta quickly). There’s a remote so I can control it without leaving my chair. The bookshelf also holds decks of Doreen Virtue cards for reflecting on issues that come up, a mock up of my book which inspires me to write and a beautiful pottery plate given to me by a dear friend to hold my keys. When you have a designated place for your keys you’ll never lose them.
The altar I created sits on top of three dog kennels…because reality is this space is also where the dogs hang out when I meditate or leave. Given my love for animals, having dogs under my altar makes complete sense. For me, the altar is a reminder of what I hold sacred, am grateful for and the intentions I’m sending out into the world. Some items on the altar change over time. The altar also holds my crystal heart chakra singing bowl, incense and sage for smudging. These items are used for clearing my energy and the room.
The artwork is especially important. It reminds me of what’s important in a beautiful way. Some of the “art” items are used for my rituals (rituals being my practices for staying grounded and heart centered). My drums and rattle are placed so I can easily take them down, use them and put them back.
From a practical aspect, there’s a washable rug in front of the patio door that goes out to the deck. I leave the house from this room most often so keeping dirt contained is important. Outside the door is another “scrubber” type doormat to remove the worst of it. Once in the door the shoes come off so I don’t track in outside energy or dirt.
An upholstered bench allows me to sit when changing shoes and has a shelf underneath to store writing paper and journals. Everything has been thought out to function well, be aesthetically beautiful and support me in writing, communicating with animals and meditation. Of course the view of the river is spectacular too.
Because creating beautiful spaces comes naturally for me I spent time thinking about the process I use to create these spaces. For those of you who don’t find this a natural process, I’m sharing some tips to help you create a beautiful, supportive space for yourself.
6 Tips to Create a Beautiful Supportive Space
1. Function First: Ask yourself: What do I want/need to do in this space? What do I need for it to be functional? How you use the space will guide the rest.
2. KISS: Keep it Simple and Spacious. Even a small space can be spacious. We often have more stuff than we need. Go back to the room’s function and ask yourself if you need everything in the space. Does anyone ever sit in that chair? Less is more. Go through each item and ask if it’s necessary. Let items do double duty (like three dog kennels as the base for an altar). Declutter, declutter, declutter. As I shared in this article, clutter is an energy vampire. Remove the clutter and you open your energy and reduce your anxiety.
3. Love it or Lose it: If you don’t love it, ditch it or transform it so you can love it. If you can’t buy new furniture find a gently used item you can paint or find a beautiful piece of fabric to throw over a well worn chair. Creating something beautiful from something once discarded can be a fun adventure. Look at each item and ask yourself if you love it. Don’t keep items because someone gave it to you, you paid a lot for it, or it has a memory unless you love it. When the items are things you love, the room reflects YOU. When the room reflects you, it feels good.
4. Make Maintenance Easy: Make it easy to keep clean and organized. Use beautiful containers to keep items sorted. Reduce the number of times you handle items. A place for everything and everything in its place.
5. Comfort Matters: You can have beauty and comfort. Never sacrifice one for the other. Designer furniture that’s uncomfortable doesn’t add beauty if your body doesn’t enjoy it.
6. Evaluate the Energy: In the end, you will know whether you have succeeded by how the room “feels” energetically. When you walk into the room are you inspired to meditate, sleep, read, work or whatever you hoped for? Are there items that don’t fit energetically (like a TV in meditation room)? Is the energy of the room supporting its function?
I’ve found after a year or two a room can begin to feel stale. When this happens, go through these tips again and re-evaluate. Moving furniture around, eliminating a few items and maybe adding something new (after eliminating) can breathe new life into a tired space.
What rooms are you inspired to redo? Share below on the blog. Questions? Ask away. I’ll answer them on the blog or on my Facebook page.