If I wasn’t on a budget, I would probably live in a constant state of revamping my home. I can always find some way to tweak a room. Decorating is both my profession and creative outlet. Some might say it’s an obsession, but let’s not go there…
However, there are certain times in life when I feel it can actually be dangerous to decorate.
Dangerous in a physical sense? Not really. Unless you happen to be moving heavy furniture at 2:00am because your husband went to bed and just HAVE to get the sofa on the other side of the living room before you go to sleep.
Decorating at the wrong time can be dangerous to our wallets, our well-being, and the way we feel about our home.
(Real quick I just want to interject and welcome any of you visiting from the Design Mom home tour this morning. So glad you stopped by, and please make yourself at home! You can learn a little about me here and check out some favorite posts here.)
WHEN DECORATING IS THE LAST THING ON EARTH YOU NEED TO DO
Sometimes decorating our home feels like a weight. In order to relieve the pressure and feel better, we make rash decisions, impulse buys, or get stuck in the middle of a project with no way out.
Sometimes we are not meant to change a thing in our home.
We are meant to sit and wait.
We wait to find clarity.
To be inspired.
To reconnect with our purpose and how that plays out in our home.
To gain perspective.
To turn the dissatisfaction we feel into gratefulness for what we have.
To decorate your home is to engage the creative process on the most personal level possible.
Friends, it is draining. In every sense of the word…physically, mentally, emotionally, and financially. Obviously I believe it’s worth the effort, but only during the right season in life. Learning when not to decorate can save you from some exhausting and costly mistakes.
If you’re unclear on your style, shopping can be frustrating and intimidating. You may know what you like when you see it, but you can’t figure out how to pull things together in your own home.
What to focus on instead: Learning
Instead of going straight into decision making mode, use this time to learn some basic design principles. (And no, I don’t mean looking stuff up on Pinterest.)
My favorite resource for decorating is and always will be Domino. Learn about different furniture styles and window treatments. Study different color combinations and how they make you feel. Through the process, you will get some clarity on your own style.
2. WHEN YOU’RE EXPERIENCING SOMETHING NEW
Newlywed? Trying to decorate your home the first few months of being married is not be the best way to enjoy marital bliss. Trust me.
New mom? Get some sleep, sister. If you didn’t get the nursery done during second trimester, don’t beat yourself up. If you’ve got a crib, changing table and rocker, then you’re fine. The rest can wait till that sweet baby is sleeping through the night.
Just moved? You might be tempted to jump right in and start decorating immediately. I actually think this can be a HUGE mistake.
Unless you have a very clear vision for the new space and free time to handle everything involved in the process, then it’s best to hold off for just a bit.
Waiting to first adjust to your new surroundings and focusing on the tip below will help ensure a better starting point.
What to focus on instead: Simplifying
Rather than decorating, focus on editing out things that just don’t make sense for this new phase in life. Really take stock of what you have. Go room by room and give every item the once over. Do you love it? Does it hold sentimental value or serve a specific purpose? If not, maybe it should find a new home.
Remember this…a home with less “stuff” is the perfect foundation to build something beautiful. It’s ready when the right pieces come into the picture.
3. DURING A SEASON OF LIFE THAT FEELS OVERWHELMING
If you’re going through an emotionally tough time for any reason, this is not the time to decorate. Even if you find decorating to be a completely stress-free and cathartic process, be careful of “comfort shopping”.
When you are pouring so much of yourself into a another person, the healing process, or simply surviving the day, your energy should be spent on coping and adapting.
What to focus on instead: Organizing
That might seem counterintuitive, but go with me here…When life feels unpredictable and perhaps out of your control, creating systems to declutter and streamline at home can actually bring a sense of order in small but mighty ways. I’ve seen this time and again with clients and know it to be true. You’d be shocked at how powerful systems of organization can be for eliminating stress in our lives.
4. WHEN YOU’RE FEELING LIKE YOUR HOME WILL NEVER MEASURE UP
The last couple years I’ve learned a lot about the creative process and its affect on our psyche. When you start from a place of insecurity and doubt, nothing good comes from it!
“Decorating insecurity” can make you:
1. Spend too much money on new items trying to compensate for the way you feel about your home.
2. Lose sight of your own style and mimic something that’s really not “you”.
3. Compare yourself and your home to others and resent what you do have.
What to focus on instead: Gratitude
Most likely if you are reading this post, that means you have internet. Which means you live in a home. And my guess would be that you have not skipped a meal lately. (Unless you’re doing a juice cleanse or something crazy like that.) In today’s world, it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture and take for granted things we enjoy everyday that many in our world sadly do not have.
I’m 100% guilty of this.
The best way to shake off feelings resentment about your home is to change your perspective. Interrupt the vicious mental cycle of comparison by remembering how blessed you are to have a home, even if it’s not ideal.
ENJOY THE DOWNTIME FROM DECORATING
If you find yourself in one of the stages above, I hope this little post has helped you breath a sigh of relief about your home.
It’s ok, dear friend. I give you permission to sit it out a round or two.
Don’t try to plan or get on Pinterest. Just sink into your sofa with a cup of coffee or a glass of wine. Read a book or watch that documentary on Netflix you’ve had in your queue for ages.
When that’s done, just let your home take care of you.
Your house doesn’t need to be your canvas right now…Simply let it be your haven.