It's Not You, It's Your Place: Top 10 Do's and Don'ts in Decorating Your Home
Thursday, Jun 02,2011
Men and women unknowingly make choices in their homes that could be contributing to their single status. Lifestyle Experts Laura Carlin and Allison Forbes offer the top ten most common do's and don'ts when decorating your home:
Don't fill your home with pictures, letters, and belongings from an ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend. Letting go of photographs, letters, and mementos from past relationships presents a challenge for many, and spending time with intimate memories from your past can sometimes be a healing and empowering experience. However, if looking at these photographs and letters is not healing or empowering, or if they are keeping you tied to someone who is no longer in your life, then it is time to let them go. Instead, surround yourself with things that reinforce who you are now and who you want to be. Looking for a new relationship is a time of looking forward to your future, not being bogged down in your past!
Don't live in a bachelor pad or little girl's room. Rooms that look they are designed for girls and boys rather than men and women are a real turn-off. If you are a man, avoid the “college frat room look” or the “bachelor pad” (i.e. mattress on the floor, futons, shot glass collections, high school trophies, dirty dishes in the sink, clutter everywhere, etc…). Women won't think you're looking for something serious if you live like you're in college. If you are a woman, avoid a room or apartment that resembles your room at your childhood home (i.e. doll collections, stuffed animals on the bed, too much lace or pink, sorority signs, baskets of dried flowers, furniture that looks like it is meant for teenagers rather than adults). Men want to be with a woman, not take care of a little girl.
Don't have excessive pictures of friends, family, and other people’s children, as well as too many pictures from one particular time in the past, such as college. Too many pictures of other people’s lives and a particular time in your life can divert focus away from your own life in the present moment. Create space for new people in your life and a new “best time of your life” by creating room for new photos. In addition, too many pictures of family, friends and even children in the bedroom, do not help set the stage for romance. You don't need t be thinking of friends and family while trying to be romantic. Establish privacy by removing photos from the bedroom.
Don't have a television in the bedroom. More often than not, a television is in the bedroom. Ideally, the bedroom should serve only two purposes: rest and romance. Yet, because of laptops, televisions, and phones, bedrooms are often more like media rooms than sensual and peaceful retreats. Don’t let a television replace a partner in your life.
Don't have lots of "Single Women Art." Time and time again we find that our single female clients have an abundance of artwork that depicts a single woman, often looking looking depressed! Your home is a reflection of your state of mind, so surround yourself with images that reflect your goals (such as pictures of romantic places, happy couples or things in two’s) and evoke positive, uplifting feelings.
Do live in a home that balances the feminine or masculine. A home that is overly feminine may not invite masculine energy; a home that is too masculine may not support feminine energy. By creating a home that balances the masculine and feminine you are creating an environment that invites and supports a relationship.
Do set up your home for two people. Often we find single men and women create a home, and in particular, bedroom for one (i.e., one bedside table, one reading lamp, one pillow) or the long side of the bed is pushed up against a wall so only one person can enter the bed comfortably. While it is important to accept and embrace where you are now, it is also important that you make some space for a partner. Create a space for two people—both symbolically and physically make space for your future partner. Add a second side table, push the bed away from the wall, or add another reading lamp, and making sure there are places for two people to eat together or hang out. Act “as if” you are already in a relationship.
Do commit to your home and live full out. Many people wait for a partner before buying or decorating a home, because they want to wait until they have a “real” home (which is frequently associated with getting married, registering for gifts, and buying a house). By surrounding yourself with things you don’t love, that are not in good condition, or things that you feel are second-rate, you’re subconsciously telling yourself that you don’t deserve better. It’s important to invest in yourself now and embrace the present moment. By doing so you are sending a message that you are worthy, and you are surrendering and accepting where you are now, which often leads to change.
Do decorate with romantic colors.Color has an impact on our emotions. An all white room or a room with little color can "cool off" a relationship. To promote more romance in your life, decorate the bedroom with sensual colors, like skin tones such as beige and chocolate, or use shades of red, the color associated with passion and love, like burgundy and terracotta. Adding color makes your home more fun, flirty, and sexy. On the other hand, too much of one very string color can be overwhelming, so don’t paint the room all red--too much of red can increase arguments and make it hard to sleep.
Do live in a clutter-free, organized, beautiful space. Clutter collects dust, stagnates energy and just weighs on our minds. It also keeps us tied to the past and blocks new and better things from coming into our lives. Being disorganized does not make us feel good about ourselves and negatively affects our self-esteem---we often feel behind, unsuccessful, or not "together" when we can’t find things. Let go of the old and make space for the new and better! When your home is set up properly it can nurture, encourage, and inspire you to achieve your goals. You can even think of your home as your new best friend—a positive sounding board that is as supportive as a good friend, but also keeps you in check by constantly reflecting your true state back to you.
Carlin and Forbes are sisters, writers and co-founders of Inspired Everyday Living, a home and lifestyle company, believe that you can use your home as a vehicle for self-transformation—as you change your home, you can transform your life. They are co-authors of “The Peaceful Nursery: Preparing a Home for Your Baby with Feng Shui,” as well as two eGuides - “Love at Home: The Single Girl’s Guide to Feng Shui and Life Design” and “Laura and Allison’s What You Will Need for a Healthy, Green Baby Nursery.”