There is nothing I appreciate or look forward to more after a long day at work or coming home from vacation than crossing the threshold of my home and knowing that I will be able to find tranquility, peace and comfort inside my four walls.
No matter how many square feet you inhabit, creating an environment that instantly illuminates this type of a generous and kind aesthetic is crucial to a balanced life. So often the lives we live outside our front doors are so busy, over-scheduled and demanding that we need a soft, safe and soothing place to return to when all is said and done.
Each person will require a slightly different or significantly different environment to meet this need, but I do believe there are a few general areas that if paid attention to yield very beneficial results. Below are seven tips on helping you do just that.
Grab A Paintbrush
Study after study has proven that our brains respond to color, so be sure to choose a color that evokes a peaceful, calm feeling throughout the majority of your living space. That’s not to say that a splash of color can’t be added with the furniture or accessories you choose, but in an effort to restore balance and peace of mind significantly large spaces (such as a wall or ceiling) should be fairy natural or at least neutral in color. There is a reason why natural tones are chosen more often than bright, electric hues. While the intoxicating magenta may strike your fancy for a moment, in the long run, it is emotionally exhausting. And the beauty is that it really only takes a trip to your local paint store, a slight talent with the paint brush and some patience to restore the tranquility you seek in your home and life.
Use Natural Fibers
The five star hotel bed and the picture perfect room in Elle Decor magazine. What do each of these scenarios have in common? While I’m sure there are a few you could list, the one that contributes to creating a home you consider your sanctuary are the natural fiber sheet sets, linen slipcovers and cashmere throws. Feeling the soft and luxurious textures of Egyptian cotton or other natural fabrics is an excellent way to create a room that is not only appealing to the eye, but addictive upon first touch.
The more natural lighting the better. Allowing the changes of the seasons and Mother Nature’s moods to be easily ascertained at a moment’s notice affects our mood. What better way to begin the day than with the morning sun streaming through your window or joining you for your morning cup of tea? Similar to the color of the room, natural lighting can have a tremendously positive effect on your overall mood, so let in the light!
Bring Nature In
There are many ways that nature can be brought into the home, for instance – plants, flowers, fruit and/or vegetables displayed in the kitchen and, the one that comes with great responsibility, but fantastic rewards when love and attention are given, animals. By reconnecting with nature, reminding yourself of what life is and what life requires to be lived well, you are providing a daily service to yourself that brings more beauty and love into your home.
Tend To It
Cleaning the home is often a chore done begrudgingly, but ultimately, upon completely the task, it is very rewarding and satisfying. To make it easier on yourself, try to schedule a weekly time when you plan on doing a quick run through of your home, cleaning as you go. By doing it each week, you reduce the amount of work you do and continue to have a home that is clean and welcoming. Think about it, after a long day at work when all you want to do is walk through the front door and relax, wouldn’t it be nice to know you can look around your home and see a clean space? One less thing to worry about, no?
Remove The Unnecessary
Recently, due to the state of the world’s economy, many have been forced to live with less, and what is being discovered is that the simplicity is actually very liberating. After all, when you have less to protect and worry about, you are able to project your time and energy into more constructive pursuits. While memories may be tugging at you when it comes to ridding yourself of certain memorabilia, remind yourself that the memory will always remain, but the thing, the object, is just that – a thing. Simply by decluttering your home, your bring in a fresh breath of air and a sigh that is instantly appreciated.
Your home is your sanctuary, just as your body is your temple, so guard it, protect it and be selective about who you invite into it. Just as it is important to be shrewd about who you invite into your inner social circle, tending to gravitate toward uplifting, positive people, so should you pay great care to the people who you usher into your home. Culturally in America, people tend to be less discriminatory about who they welcome into your private residences, but in France for example, to enter someone else’s home is a privilege and to be allowed to wander beyond the living room, even more so. Just because everyone else allows their guests to roam freely, doesn’t me you have to if it doesn’t make you feel comfortable. After all, this is your sanctuary. Your place to find peace, comfort and reassurance after each day out in the world.
Hopefully, you’ve seen a few things that are things you have or would incorporate when setting out to create your own sanctuary. Out of curiosity, what other aspects do you feel a home should include in order to be considered a sanctuary? I’d love to hear.