Creating Harmony For The Odd Couple

Do you live with someone who isn’t as neat as you are? We find this sort of situation funny in a TV show like “The Odd Couple” but in real life it can add disturbing energy to the Home Space we share with others- and that is not good for anyone.

We are each born with unique predispositions so that a “mess” to one person is perfect organization to another. I have seen homes where I couldn’t imagine how they manage, but the people are able to find just what they want instantly. They tell me it’s a matter of having what they want handy and out in the open so they don’t forget it. Moving Day

Most energy workers would frown on this type of functionality. Feng Shui the Chinese art of placement, which is thousands of years old, promotes simplicity and organization and for the most part I agree. But of course I would – I am a Virgo after all-ha! However, during my 30 plus years as a designer I have seen many instances where a mess wasn’t really a mess, and to ask the owner to clean it up would be a great disservice to their creative energy. Only the beholder of the mess knows whether it is a problem or a style of living for them. In another post I will go over how you can tell the difference but for now I want to focus on how two polar opposite types can live in harmony together.

The first thing I would advise to a couple or family that has different views on mess and order is for them to grant each person a room of their own. If that is not possible then a room they have the right to create in their particular style of messy or neat. This space becomes “sacred space” to the one it belongs to and they get to have the whole space in their style of functionality without any judgment from others. Once each person has their designated space, the rest of the home is divided between all the other members in a manner that shares styles. For instance the living room – if this is the room they entertain guests in then this space would become a mostly “neat space” so as to allow guests space to sit and visit. The TV or family room might be a blend of the two with a designated chair space for the messy one and one for the neat one. To give you an example of this check out the TV show Frasier where the dad has his scruffy chair in the pristine modern Living Room of Frasier’s loft. The two parties agree not to “mess with” the others portion of each shared room and to be responsible for their part only.

For the “community rooms” in your home – those that you share and are half messy and half neat I suggest creating special days as “cleaning days.” In my experience the messy ones frequently feel overwhelmed by their mess and perhaps in need of some TLC attention. A special cleaning day is just the ticket. On this day you set aside time for the two of you (or whole family) to clean and tidy the home together. I call this a “Cleaning Party” and that is just what you want to make it. Put on a funny TV show you all love or music while you work. Have a coke or Starbucks coffee and fun snacks. Create a plan to go room to room and assign tasks ahead of time for each member. The key here is to HAVE FUN while cleaning and bonding. In this activity the Home Space becomes YOUR Home Space and is a great harmony booster.

With a set day and time for the whole family to clean together the messy one gets the help they need and the neat one doesn’t feel that all the cleaning is on their shoulders alone and both get bonding time. Acceptance is the gift of love we give to each other and to ourselves!

’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach





Color Scheme Basics

Deciding on what colors to use in your home can be a bit overwhelming but here are a few tips that will guide you during your decorating project.

Think in Three’s: For the overall home it is best to choose three colors (hues) that coordinate together  and that are are used throughout the home. Back in the 60’s when carpeted floors took over wood flooring many designers cheered because having the same color of carpet throughout the house helped create a cohesive whole to the home décor.  Paint Chip collection (2)

If you have a different color scheme and theme in each room the house can feel fragmented and choppy. Sometimes this is just what you want to create to give distanced to the members who live there. But if you want the group of people who live together to come together and live in harmony something needs to tie all the rooms together. Using the same hue of color for flooring will do this as well as choosing a color scheme using 3 harmonious colors.

For instance say you want tile flooring in the kitchen and dining room but carpet elsewhere, if the colors are the same or a good blend then you have your “tie-in.” If they are not, then the colors of the walls and furniture need to do the trick and bring harmony to the home. You can do a lot with a limited palate by using the different shades or tones of each color as well; for instance the deep version for the pillows and the lighter version for the sofa fabric.

If you picked green, blue and yellow for your three colors it would be important to use the same version of each color in every room, but you could still make one room more green than yellow or blue and another room more yellow than blue and green. Just don’t go mixing lemon yellow with school bus yellow because these are two versions of yellow and do not blend well together and the clash of colors drains our energy. You can go from light to dark of the same version of color but don’t swap hues. Paint chips are great at showing you versions of the same hue in different values.

Another color tip is if a particular room belongs to or is used most by one person, choose the color of the three that looks best on that person as the dominate one for that room. We all feel much better in rooms that have the colors we look good wearing and might even have in our wardrobe.

Remember to use “non” colors such as white, brown, black and grey as needed but you don’t need to count them in your color scheme unless you are doing a monochromatic theme. However there is an exception here…if you are using the warm hue version of a color then you need to use the warm hue version of grey, while, brown and black. All colors come in either warm or cool temperatures (more next week on this.)

Monochromatic theme: Another way to bring cohesion to the home is to downplay color on purpose and use mostly the “non” colors of black, grey and white and one color as accent. The focus here is taking just one color in varying shades and using it throughout your home. Frequently an accent color will be added to give an energetic pop to the room. For instance a living room done in shades of grey and black might use bright red pillows and candles to give the room some energy. Monochromatic tends to be “boring” to some and soothing to others.

How To Choose Color: How can you know what three colors to choose? Take a look in your closet and the closet of those you live with. Find what colors dominate there and use them as a guide. Or you can find a piece you love like an area rug, painting or an upholstery fabric and design around this. Visit a home improvement or paint store and gather all the paint samples that appeal to you. Take them home and lay them out on a table for a few days and rate them every day as to what ones you like the most. As you eliminate some and keep others, your color scheme will become obvious and make you feel happy. Next show your selection to those you live with and get their vote. Once you have your three colors carry the samples with you as you go shopping to be sure you find what works with the scheme you have chosen.

‘till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach




When Is It Time To Change Your Home Space?

From the time we are born until the day we pass on we will most likely live in at least a half-dozen different Home Spaces. Even if you stay in the same house and in the same town your Home Space is likely to go photo-22.jpgthrough a half-dozen different incarnations which amounts to a “move” from your old Home Space energetically even if not physically.

How do you know when it’s time to move on and create a new space for yourself? Well there are a number of clues – some are physical such as you out grow the space you currently have and some are – metaphysical or even emotional. Here is a short list of Events and Energy Shifts that may be a sign it is time for a change.


  • you have a new child and need more space
  • you get married and want to live together
  • you enroll in a college too far to live at “home”
  • you divorce and need to change the energy and possibly get a smaller space
  • your health requires you to live in a new environment
  • your job requires a change of location

These are just a handful of Events that may occur from time to time that will cause us to need to change our Home Space. So while most of these are obvious, what about the subtle clues that tell us our energy and well being would be better served in a new space? Here is a short guide to let you know something subconscious is calling out for change….

Energy Shifts:

  • when you find you don’t want to come home from work
  • when you can’t find anything in your closet, kitchen or garage
  • when you feel restless and keep dreaming about a different location
  • when you find you are avoiding spending any time in a room or two of your current Home Space
  • when you feel depressed or have sudden lethargy and notice you are attracted to brighter colors than you have in your home

Okay, so you realize it is time for a change now what? Well the first thing I do is have a “Dream Planning Session” with myself. You see often we can feel a need but can’t quite give a voice to it and this is a necessary first step in the process of choosing or changing your Home Space.

Dream Planning

  • Get out your Archeological Dig Journal or a notebook
  • Write down what you don’t like about what you currently have in your Home Space. It’s important to get down on paper what is bothering you. It might appear to be vague complaining at first but once you write it down it will begin to gel into a solution.
  • Once you have listed all that is upsetting you – turn each statement around to see what the opposite would be. For instance “I can’t stand the mess in my closet” would change to ” I love my new well organized and tidy closet”
  • Next ask yourself how you might achieve the better (opposite) environment. Think big. Even if you can’t afford what you want, write it down. An affordable solution will appear if you go for all you want to start with. Remember “dreaming” doesn’t cost a thing 🙂

Once you have listed all the steps to make this change happen put your journal away and review it on a different day to see if it is still the solution you wish to try. If you have more than one item to change you can also prioritize them. For instance maybe one change is really important to you, so start with that. Or one change must happened before another can such as painting the walls before you put in new carpet.

Unloading your frustrations and dreaming on paper is so highly valuable I cannot stress it enough. Moving or redecorating is a BIG job and focused organization is your best friend.

And by all means if you need help, drop me a note and I’ll give you some help!

’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach


Are You A Pioneer?

How badly do you want a home? How hard are you willing to work just to make a home for yourself? Will any home do or do you require a certain “kind” of home before you go to great lengths to get it?

For the early American settlers their desire for a new space in a new area had to be extreme for them to do what they did to get it. Sure the Homestead Act of 1862 motivated many of them to come west to claim their free plot of land to farm but the “getting” to this space was the trick. Many of them never survived the journey for various reasons and those that did basically walked the whole way. They walked becaue they needed their wagon to store all their precious items such as food, medicine, tools and if they were lucky a special piece of furniture. The horses were needed for pulling the wagon and to ride one was a luxury they couldn’t afford. So they walked and covered about 15 miles a day!! If they were in the flatlands they might actually see their camp from the night before. Talk about slow and tedious and grueling!! Yet we know millions did this and enough succeeded to repopulate the American west…we who live here are proof of their great effort. Moving Day

That’s something to think about…your choice of home, and what you are willing to do to get and keep it may reflect for generations your effort and dedication. Our home is our legacy and so in many ways each of us is a pioneer creating the path that is best for us to be of service to the world.

We recently had an economic crisis in the United States and too many people lost their homes. Because the numbers were so high in a short period of time new programs were created to help people keep their mortgages. What I found rather curious during this time was the switch from the words “home” to the word “house.” If they were talking about defaulting on the mortgage it became a “house” or the property of the bank and all too often the fact that these people were losing their Home Space was completely ignored.

Luckily for us, we human beings can create and recreate a Home Space no matter where we are. In fact our original Home Space is truly our Soul that travels with us. The desire to express what is inside of us outwardly into the world is a natural drive for each of us. So each time you are called upon to move “house” trust that you have what it takes to make this space a Home for yourself no matter the circumstances. Think of the Pioneers and realize the impossible can be achieved if you follow your heart and let your Soul guide you. Each time you set out on a journey to move your Home Space you are indeed a Pioneer setting down roots that will be unlike any other you have known before. Even though it can be scary, try to enjoy the process and be patient; over time it will evolve into exactly what you need.

’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach

Car Space

I love my car. I really mean it. She has a gender, a name – Ruby Tuesday Picard, and I actually celebrate her birthdays. Ruby turned “Sweet 16” recently and since I couldn’t take my usual road trip due to work, I took her through a Starbucks drive-thru for a chocolate cookie…okay the cookie was for me but Ruby got to be on the new TV monitor this Starbucks has…so that was special-lol

Ruby Sweet 16Unless you also treat your car as a family member you might think I am a bit strange, but to me it makes perfect sense. You see our cars act as a shield or force field that supports us as we “space travel.” Yep, I said “space” travel – what else would you call my ability to go 80 miles an hour down a freeway, especially at night where I can barely see a few hundred feet in front of me? We travel through time and space faster in our cars than we could on foot, horseback or bicycle. The next fasted we could go would be inside of an airplane and then of course a space ship. But I for one don’t want a rocket moving me about while I am connected to a road with traffic-ha!

In any case my point is, I take my life in my hands each time I start up my car and drive her someplace. I am counting on her tires holding up, her steering and braking systems to function and for the windows to work so I don’t get hit by bugs or birds (I feel sorry for motorcyclists.) Because I have a car I can go places! I can get a job across town, drive to the ocean or bring my groceries home before they spoil. I don’t have that freedom if I ride public transit. I am not knocking public transit for it is a wonderful system – it’s just that I have more freedom with my own transportation vehicle…more Personal Space freedom/empowerment.

Car Space has it’s own energy as well. Many of us use our cars as a second home; we use them as an office, we eat meals in our car, even sleep in our car and of course many of us have made love in our cars. 🙂  The front passenger seat or the back can be loaded with boxes and files and items we need to do business while on the road. I got a RAV 4 so I could cart my large canvas paintings, and my fabric samples when I was an active designer.

My car Ruby has been super reliable for the past 16 years. Very simple to keep going with no major glitches, and I am eternally grateful not only for the safety she provides, but because I haven’t had to waste time getting her to the garage for repairs. I can count on my car and this means a lot to each of us.

Our cars reflect and support our personalities and our life styles. They are a shining example of our expression of our Personal Space energy and they enable us to empower our dreams by transporting us where we need to go.

Now can you see why I love my car? Happy Sweet 16th Birthday Ruby!

Write back and tell me about your car.

’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach

New Home Blues

You’ve just moved into your new dream home/apartment – Congratulations!! How are you doing? Is everything wonderful?
If you find that even though you got everything you wanted you don’t feel like you did, in fact you have moments where you feel wiped out and depressed, then you are in good company. This happens to all of us no matter how well we plan or how much help we have.You see moving is very similar to re-potting a house plant. No matter how careful you are, there are going to be repercussions to the activity of moving your “roots” And what does a new house plant that has been re-potted need first? It needs rest or in our case “to give it a rest.”

Gardenshop -1We live in a world where we can get most of what we want instantly and we think this should be the case no matter what we want next. But with a move of our Home Space we are also moving our Body Space and our Life Energy Space not to mention our mental space has shifted as well. It simply takes time for our “roots” to find their footing in this new space we have settled into. Our furnishings look and feel different, even our clothes look different when we put them on and dress for the day. We can’t find the items we used to just reach automatically for like a fork or our hair dryer. It takes time to settle into our new “digs” and we need to give ourselves all the time and space we need to settle in. We will adjust as we go along. Sometimes we can’t tell where an item should go until we live in the space for awhile, and once we are well rested bright ideas can emerge.

It usually takes me three months from the day I move into a new place before I find that it feels like “home” to me. Interestingly enough that is just like a re-potted plant. They first have to rest, then they begin to reestablish their roots in the new soil and space. Then once they feel acclimated they will begin to send out new shoots or even bloom – their version of being and feeling “at home” with their new space.

I have a favorite quote by Susan Strasberg I use when I find myself getting impatient with life…
You can’t push the wave onto the shore any faster than the ocean brings it in.”

Here are my Tuesday Tips for Healing the New Home Blues:

  • Go ahead take a break.
  • Stop and congratulate yourself on your new home – Celebrate!!
  • Pat yourself on the back for all the hard work you achieved to get yourself set up there.
  • Stop looking at what inst’ done and note all you did get done
  • Take some time to get to know this new space and “make friends” with it.
  • Stretch out and try on different spots for your furnishings
  • Nurture and nourish yourself with good food.
  • Postpone those “show and tell” open-house parties until you feel up to them.

Have PATIENCE and over time you will find the blues have left and you feel your new house has become the sanctuary you had hoped for. Enjoy your new “digs”

’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©


Have you ever tried to find a needle in a haystack? How about when you are in a hurry, on a deadline and need something fast but you just couldn’t find it because the place where you left “it” is a mess?

Junk Drawer

This photo is a pictorial representation of “frustration” especially when you apply the above scenario of trying to find what you need – your “it” item in this drawer. Now I realize that we all have what we call the “junk drawer” in our homes or in our desk but this poses an energy problem for our life if we don’t organize and tidy it up now and then. It especially poses a major problem if this is the only drawer in your desk/office or if every drawer looks like this.

The urge to “toss and go” is so compelling that most of us will do this believing it saves us time, and for the most part it will; but only if you go back asap (as soon as possible) and put the “it” away where it belongs. Otherwise that time saved in the current moment will cost you more time in the next moment if you can’t find the “it” you tossed four days ago!!

As a Virgo – (I know we can be a bit anal but here me out) I am not perfect either, in fact I can create clutter as good as anyone however, I do loath being frustrated and I have discovered this parallel in my life. If I start having frequent occurrences of life frustration and irritation I only have to go to my cabinets and drawers to see if this photo is what I have inside because nine times out of ten I have clutter and messes behind closed doors. Funny thing is that I discovered I don’t have to apply any energy to fixing any of the messes in my outer life IF I take the time to tidy up my drawers and/or cabinets. When I do this step first all or most of the frustration in my life: job- relationships – finances will “miraculously” resolve. I have proven this tactic so many times that I now require it of my clients when they express the need to feel less rushed, frustrated and irritated in their daily routine.

I got the inspiration for this blog on a day I had attracted a temp job where the word messy took on new meaning. This is one of those places that is lovely on the outside but open a cabinet or drawer and you run the risk of being hit in the face! There are so many wonderful organizing tools to help us put order in our spaces that I was shocked that they did have nice organizing trays below the mess but were buried under the clutter!! So what gives here? Its an attitude and mind-set that says “I just don’t have time to put it where it goes!” Either that or they didn’t feel they were valuable enough to stop and take the time to make the space work for themselves. Either way I have news for you…you DO have time and you will either take it up in the moment using up mere seconds or you will use it up later taking 1000 times that much time (maybe even days) plus you will drain your energy reserves and create havoc all through your life.

So is that 5 – 30 seconds worth it to put items exactly where they go? Yes, most of the time and when it isn’t then create a “sub-routine” just like in our computer systems to check your spaces either once a night or once a week. I usually wrap up my day this way and for sure I wrap up my week this way. When I do this it also sends a signal to my brain that I am done with work for now or whatever my task was. Endings are needed in order for new beginnings to come our way. Leaving a mess says “not done” and I for one want to put my messes to rest!

So that’s all for now…I am done 🙂

’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach

Ebb and Flow

I have been writing for a few weeks now about my family members who are moving to new Home Spaces and I mentioned that I too have a new Home Space in that I now have an “empty nest” house all to myself. This is a new step for me and with all new steps we tend to learn as we go.

It’s been just over a month and I am stunned to realize I have not fully moved into my new space. I even have my coffee mug collection sitting out on the counter because I just can’t decide how I want to store them now that I have all this room! Now you need to know that I am one of those detailed, organized and yes “anal” Virgos so this really shocks me to notice how much mess and clutter I am still living with. I also notice that even though I moved my art supplies to my new Art Studio I haven’t painted a single stroke in over a month!

Ebb and FlowTaking time to observing ourselves is one of the best tips I can share with you and one I have finally mastered. I have finally stopped most of the “monkey mind” put downs and when they do appear I tend to notice them, then laugh at my latest foibles. So I had to stop and ask myself what the heck is going on with me and all this mess, and of course I got the answer. This time it came as a visual. Sometimes I will hear a song and other times I will get actual words like “it’s not time yet” – I get that one a lot and I rarely like it. lol

So what did I “see” as my answer? I “saw” in my minds-eye the ocean flowing in and out, in and out, and the tide coming in and out…then I heard the words “ebb and flow.”  I realized that is just what I have been doing since my Home Space became fully mine. You see it’s not just the movement of books or furniture and setting up shop in a given room such as my art studio; it’s the adjustment of energy. I am going though the shift of being a “corner of my bedroom artist” to having a whole room to myself. I am shifting from having the activity of others in my Home Space to having total solitude. Basically, I am ebbing and flowing through the changes, and like I mentioned in my last post I too need to say “enough for now” and let myself take breaks from it all.

Here are the steps I find myself going though when making a major Home Space energy shift and perhaps you do as well…

  • A new idea for change comes to me
  • I begin moving, cleaning, packing and setting up the new idea
  • Then I get overwhelmed and just can’t see what I want anymore
  • I take a break do something else for a few days
  • Then another idea comes and I have to go shopping
  • Next it’s deciding what to keep and what to give away
  • Again I get overwhelmed after I shift the energy and give stuff away
  • Take another break
  • When I return I find I am able to set up the space
  • Next I find I have to “sit with it” awhile to determine if the energy I created is a good fit
  • Make adjustments
  • Take a break
  • Visit the space again and then tweak it as necessary
  • Then one day without realizing it, I find I have finished and am now living in my new space happy as a clam!

The “take a break” moments in this analogy are similar to the ocean tides going in and out and the activity of each day’s tasks managed is the ebb and flow of the waves. Having this vision really gave me peace of mind. I realized once again that the Universe is in order, and I am on time and there is no pushing or pressure needed…just relax and follow through as guided….”ebb and flow…..”

‘till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©





Enough For Now!

Have you ever been deep in a work project where suddenly you found yourself saying the phrase “enough for now?” Or do you generally find that enough is never “enough” and you are always dissatisfied and push yourself till you drop?

Currently two members of my family are in the process of moving and setting up new homes for themselves, one a new apartment and the other purchased a new home. Both have come to the point where they hit that wall that made them want to toss out what they own versus pack it up and move it. Having moved myself over thirteen times I must say I have felt the same way about the whole moving process. As I watch my kids go through the moving frustration process I am reminded of my own ordeals, and I wonder what if anything I have learned along the way that I could share and be of help to them. iphone pics 6 151

First I have to be honest and say I haven’t fully mastered this moving process fully myself but I do have one tip that when I remember to apply it amazing things have happened. I got this from a dear friend many years ago and it is simply to stop and allow myself – even in the midst of a great big mess – to say “enough for now” and mean it. You mean it by literally stopping. Not by ending the task you are currently deeply involved in, but by packing it up in a quick neat pile, perhaps making a list to show where you left off and JUST WALK AWAY!

Walking away from an unfinished task and leaving a mess behind (even a neat mess because who are we kidding I am a Virgo and I just can’t do it-lol) is a HUGE step in becoming the “master of your moving domain” versus the slave to the job. This brings to mind a funny Seinfeld episode …the one where they bet who can hold out the longest and be the “master of their domain” but this was of course the physical body domain they meant and not a Home Space move. Still it brings humor into the mix and makes my point… do we want to be enslaved by the work we have to do, or be the boss of ourselves and do our task with joy and fun?

Once you find the courage to say “enough for now,” the next step is R & R. Do something enjoyable such as going out for a relaxing meal, take an outdoor break, take a nap, go for a long walk, leave the building and visit someone at Starbucks… basically do whatever will give you a refresh and reboot in that moment.

How do you know when “enough for now” is a necessary next step versus procrastination? Here is how I know, and maybe this will give you a clue into your own unique inner guidance messages. I know it’s time when one or all of these start happening:

  • I start dropping things, cut or burn myself
  • I start misplacing things like the packing tape or cleaning rag
  • I keep forgetting what I was going to do next
  • I have a sudden melt-down crying jag for “no reason”
  • I reach for caffeine or sugar even though I have the shakes from too much already
  • I start shaming myself with my self-talk: “you’ll never get done in time” “You are such a slowpoke” etc.

Remember one of the reasons we choose to move our Home Space is that we want something better for ourselves and we can’t get that “better something” by beating up on ourselves during the moving process either with words or actions.

So take a break when you need it,  then begin again later. Believe it or not, the world won’t come to an end if you are not exactly on your time schedule and it really will all work out in the end…beautifully!

‘till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©

The Importance of Before and After Moving Photos

With way too much to do on your list as you proceed through your move you might think taking pictures is just a waste of time. I used to feel that way until one time I took photos and realized what a big help having those pictures ended up being.

We tend to dismiss all that we DO get done and just focus on the things we DIDN’T do and this drains our energy. Taking “before”  and during your move photos causes a pause in the manic get-this-done-now vibe we have going and gives us a moment to review all we got done and then to celebrate this fact with others if we choose to text or post the photos on-line. Happy, joyous energy is a must when you are moving and any way you can bring this in during the process will make the whole project move faster and be more fun. Moving Day

Another reason “before” photos are great is that it gives you a perspective on how the place looked empty and when you compare these with the “after” pictures you can get new decorating ideas that wouldn’t occur to you while sitting in the room. A photo freezes only one spot for a more detailed perspective. You can use the pictures to make a Word document and list under the picture the possible decorating items you want to add when time and money permits.

“After” and during the move photos of your possessions also can be added to a file you keep for insurance purposes. If you every have a flood (pipes) or moving damage or whatever might occur it helps to have pictures to remind you of all the items you own. Another good reason is that years later when you review these photos you will find they help you to plan your next move. We tend to forget over time all the details we have to take care of when doing a move. Your photo book will refresh your memory and show you how you did it before; kind of like a private “time capsule” just for you.

And my most favorite reason for “before” – “during” and “after” photos … the memories. Each year on the anniversary of our home I pull out our scrapbook and look at our move and am amazed at how happy the memories are. You see I really “hate” moving. I truly wish Star Trek was real and Scotty could just “beam me up” to my new place with everything intact-lol. Taking time to make the process fun helps to set the best energetic vibration for your new space and builds happy memories.

So take time out and shoot some pictures. Make it fun. Include your moving and decorating crew and be sure to hand off the camera and get a picture of yourself as well.

Enjoy your new space!

’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©