I like to compare our home with our wardrobe, just like the relationship between our clothes and the way we feel when we wear them; our home influences the way we feel, re-energize and work.
Every morning, whether we are consciously aware of it or not, we open up our wardrobe and choose the colours, accessories and outfit for the day. What we wear makes a difference in how people judge us and whether others find us sympatric but even more importantly, our clothes make a difference in the way we feel about ourselves.
Our attire can help us become more confident, be part of a group, sportive, happy, lucky or sensual. This is why the lingerie industry makes a ton of money selling clothes that are hidden most of the time underneath other clothes.
It’s in this same way our home can help us to feel safe, calm, creative and well rested or, of course, exposed and vulnerable. Depending on the choices of the house, its furnishings, decorations, colours and finishes our body can tell us if we are comfortable in our home or not.
Surprisingly few people are aware of the fact that our house influences our life so much. Colours, shapes, styles and accessories are the ingredients that create the atmosphere of a room. To become more aware of this sit down in a few different spots in your own home and focus on your body and how it feels.
Melissa did just that and decided that something had to change in her apartment. She had recently moved in with her boyfriend but something just didn’t feel quite right for her. There was plenty of space in what had been his bachelor pad. The sparse furniture and complete absence of ornaments, carpets or cushions obviously stemmed from her new partner's single life. Even the colour palette used in the entire house – brown leather with white, black and chrome basically shouted masculinity wherever the gaze went.
“I feel quite alone and not really settled anywhere in the house” was Melissa’s response when I asked about her emotions. “It’s like going out by myself wearing a dress without accessories; it’s ok but to make it mine I need jewellery, a belt, some make-up and a purse. I would love for my partner to go out with me so I won’t feel alone.”
When I met Melissa she told me that she didn’t like to be at home. They frequently went out in the evenings and had never really settled into the house and instead used it as a crash pad only.
In Melissa’s case decorating the apartment with art and accessories together with her boyfriend made all the difference. To fill their nearly empty apartment with the atmosphere they chose bold colours to bring their walls to life. Their parents were more than happy to contribute some of the knick-knacks that had been handed down for generations – each one carrying a story behind them.
During the entire process, the two tried their best to make all their decisions together while keeping in mind they wanted to create a nest for their future life together. It had to be warm and cosy but also fitted their current bold lifestyle. It was important that it felt quiet so as to give them the rest they needed to retreat from their busy jobs. Once the apartment was finished Melissa’s remarked “It was quite like putting together an outfit: I kept in mind how I wanted to feel while choosing the accessories and colours”
The most basic requirement for any house is to keep us safe, warm and dry. This was the case when houses were first built and it is still true. So anything you can do to make your house feel safer is going to help you relax at home. The feeling of being secure is an absolute necessity for our body. When we feel safe we can relax much more easily and it can take us into a state of rest and rejuvenate to restore our energy.
Styling the home in a way so it makes you feel a certain way is a brilliant idea. If you desire space for growth make sure to have open space in your house.
You want time to relax? Make sure you remember this when you are choosing a colour palette – ensure the colours you pick are calming.
If you crave sunshine during cold winter months? Choose light colours and lots of yellow and choose big pictures of brightly sunlit landscapes and of course don’t forget to incorporate good lighting.
If you want to lose some weight? Make sure in your kitchen has a large bowl of fruit, the chocolate is hidden in the cupboards and the nuts and healthy snacks are handy. Ensure the kitchen is ready with all the pans, plates and ingredients you will need to prepare healthy meals.
Do you feel the need to break out of your “average” life and do things you actually enjoy? Go ahead and change your normal house into an extraordinary one.
Same goes for your wardrobe; if want to be taken seriously put on a suit and people will assume you’re more confident.
Want to feel sexier? Put on the nice lingerie underneath your work uniform.
If you would like to spice up your life, pick bold colours and combine them in an unusual manner.
I know that none of this is rocket science. If you’re actually going to take action do it now! Try mixing things up in your home, you’ll be surprised at the changes that take place in your life.
Radical changes in your living space move a lot of energy and can mark the beginning of drastic changes in many areas of your life.
One step at a time
You don’t need to knock down walls and re-tile your bathroom to see the benefits of intentionally working with the house. Start with small things like adding a picture of something you love in a space that is currently not to your taste, put fresh flowers on your desk or de-clutter your wardrobe, you’ll be surprised by the effect it has on your life.
Eva Gossenreiter is an interior designer with an architectural background. Through personal experience, Eva realized how much the atmosphere in her home could affect her mood and life. Eva brought this concept into her interior design business and uses techniques such as Feng Shui, Dowsing and Clearings to turn living spaces into retreats that delight the soul and rejuvenate the body. To find out more visit evagossenreiter.com