How do you begin a decorating project when you have no clue what it is you want? You start with what you know you “don’t” want. Sounds crazy right? This is one of our “delightfully human” traits – to be clear on what we don’t like before we can clarify what it is we do like.
Give yourself as much time as you need. It could be done in a day if you are only doing a small room or it might take up to a month to complete this process. There is no hurry. Going slow will allow you time to process all that you discover about yourself. Keep it fun!
The “Don’t Like” List:
Grab a pen and a sheet of paper; draw a line down the middle. (Or use your Personal Space Journal) Write in the left column “Don’t Like” and in the right column “Love.”
- Very quickly without much thought list off the top of your head furnishings you have seen and experienced that you really don’t like. Maybe there are colors that really turn you off, or perhaps a style that you just can’t stand.
- Once you have pulled up all you know for sure you don’t like/want, try imagining the opposite for each item you listed. This will give you a starting point of what you might like/want.
- Now that you have listed all that you had on your mind, you will want to delve deeper into what you do like.
- Google the items you are considering purchasing from this list of furnishings. Look over the photos and find items that you love. If you do see something that you really can’t stand and haven’t listed it already, jot it down. Knowing your “don’t like” list will help steer you toward finding what you love. Bookmark the pages of what you like or list the details so you can find it later when you are ready to shop.
- If you are on Pinterest you can even create “pin” boards to collect the pictures of what you like/love.
- Carpet – Area Rugs
- Floor Tile – Vinyl Flooring – Wood Flooring
- Paint Color – Wallpaper – Faux Painting – Wood Paneling – Chair Railing and Crown Molding
- Floor lighting –
- Table lamps – Track Lighting – Chandeliers
- Chairs – wood, metal, upholstered
- Sofa – benches, wood framed, upholstered
- Tables – end tables, coffee table, task tables, and dining room tables
- Accessories – (this area is virtually unlimited so choose areas you are considering)
- Silk Floral or Plant arrangements – candle holders, figurines, boxes, pillows, blankets, art, paintings, photography
Next you can Google styles and see if you find one that has most of what you want. Remember you don’t have to stick to any one style; in fact to mix styles in a clever, harmonious fashion is called “Eclectic” style. Other style include…
Country – Country French – Contemporary – Early American – Modern – Scandinavian – Mediterranean – Old World – Asian – Traditional – Retro …just to name a few.
The key here is to notice what appeals to you on the visual level. Next we’ll discover how comfortable these styles are to live with.
’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©
I watched a recording of the Grammy’s the other day and was amazed at the sheer variety of music they presented. I’ve watched them before and I even listen to an eclectic mix of music myself but something just clicked in me about half-way through the program as they panned over the audience.
It was filled with musicians!! Thousands of them! As I watched Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney of The Beatles perform I was reminded of how much this one band changed in their short career together.
If someone visited from another planet and were to hear “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” and then listen to “Revolution” they wouldn’t be able to tell it was the same band!
So, here is my point. The notes of music are fixed. There are 88 notes plus sharps and flats and that is it! Yet that room was filled with more than 88 versions of music diversity. The unique blend of each artist even if they sing the same song or play the same instrument is virtually endless. It’s as if those same 88 notes once filtered through each unique individual emerged reborn and totally unique!
As I listened to the new ‘”songs of the year” I couldn’t help but wonder what in the world will they come up with next?
I could see how this diversity makes sense if you consider lyrics because words are endless in their variations but the notes -not so much. People who have that talent to write and play music have something different to offer, something unique no one but they can offer. How marvelous to see a crowd of thousands and know that no two were alike; not only in their DNA and fingerprints but in how they see and hear life. And this is the difference that allows them to create such a wide range of notes and lyrics and styles of songs.
Are you a country fan? Are you a heavy metal fan? Do you like classical or jazz? No matter what you like to listen to, its unique to you and I encourage you to play all the music you want in your Personal Space and be grateful someone else dared to be unique and create the music you love.
’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach ©
When it comes to entertaining friends, family or others in your home it is important to keep some space “off limits” to your guests. This important step enables you to keep your home as a place of private refuge. If you entertain often in your home and want to show off your beautifully decorated rooms, just be sure to keep some areas and items private. It’s fairly easy to do; just keep doors closed and if necessary locked as well. Hide things in a closet you don’t want others to see. Your home is not their business. This is your private home and you have every right to close off part of it for just yourself and those who live there with you. In this manner you empower yourself with respect.We all need space where we don’t have to put on a “good show” and that is what our homes are for. So keep that in mind when having people over; protect your private space and belongings.
Tips for entertaining:
- Center the food and entertainment in the rooms you are willing to share with the “world”
- Most people who visit or attend your party will hover in the kitchen, so this is a key room to have read-for-company
- Create serving stations, a bar area and seating sections
- Use colorful flower arrangements, candles, place mats and colorful dishes to designate the party boundaries
- Distraction is the best tool I know for keeping guests captivated so they won’t need to see “the rest of your house” but if for some reason someone really presses the issue and you just don’t want to show your private rooms make up a story about how they are being remodeled and you’ll show them later. Then reconsider if this person is someone you want in your home for future parties.
- Sometimes we feel we must entertain in our home such as to boost our career or keep the in-laws happy. I think this is a mistake and a time to employ your personal power and creativity. Instead host a party at a favorite restaurant, resort, or park.
- Theme driven parties will also keep guests in the designated space. The decorations help set up the “party boundaries” and make the rest of the house ‘off limits”
- Pool party theme, Hawaiian theme, and Picnic or Al Fresco dining will keep your guests outdoors
- Cookie Decorating or Cookie Sharing Holiday Party keeps them in the kitchen and dining room
- Use movies or TV shows playing low in the family room to draw people there, especially if they came to watch the game.
- Have your outdoor section set up for seating and drinks in case the party moves outdoors
- Use music outdoors as well if it won’t bother the neighbors
The important point to remember is that this is YOUR home and no one has the right to force themselves in if you don’t want them there. Trust me, do this for yourself and your personal power will bloom!
’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©
Once you claim your private (power) spot in your home, you will notice other places that you frequently visit will also have spots that you regularly use which are power spots for you even if they are not completely private.
There are examples all around us of people claiming their power spots. A funny example you may have seen comes from one of my favorite TV shows The Big Bang Theory. In almost every episode we see where the character “Sheldon Cooper” has laid claim to a particular spot on the couch and won’t let anyone else sit there. I don’t recommend that we go this psycho in our relationships but it serves as a funny example of what “taking up space” can look like. TV character Sheldon has definitely declared his right to exist, but unlike Sheldon, we want remember to keep our sense of humor if our space is invaded.
[easyazon_link asin=”B000W91RUG” locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”persspaccoac-20″]The Big Bang Theory: The Complete First Season[/easyazon_link], the pilot episode from 2007:
Leonard: (shouted to Penny as she starts to sit down) you can’t sit there!!
Penny: Why not?
Sheldon: That’s where I sit.
Penny: What’s the difference?
Sheldon: What’s the difference? In the winter that seat is close enough to the radiator to remain warm, and yet not so close as to cause perspiration. In the summer, it’s directly in the path of a cross-breeze created by opening windows there and there. It faces the television at an angle that is neither direct, thus discouraging conversation, nor so far wide as to create a parallax distortion. I could go on, but I think I’ve made my point.
Have you ever felt this way about a spot you thought was yours? I find this happens to me when I attend a movie and have to get up. I make sure I leave something like a sweater to mark “my spot” because I don’t want to lose it while I go get a soda. I know whole families who have a certain section in their church where they “always” sit and others who favor particular locations of Starbucks along with a favorite table to sit at. This is healthy human behavior; putting down territorial roots even if they are temporary. We need them for our survival and it is healthy as long as we stay flexible and know the truth – the power behind and ability to create our “roots” is actually inside each of us. The power is never “out there” and always comes from within. We are the power in our lives, not the spot we choose to inhabit; it just helps us to expand our expression to take up space in an outward fashion.
’till next time!
Your Personal Space Coach©
Let’s continue the topic of my last two blogs and today let’s look at the actions of the two women who sat at the large square table in the middle of the room.
From what I shared the original post “Coffee Space Invaded,” I bet most of you thought what they did was “rude” behavior; I know I did at first. What else could possibly have been going on for them that they were oblivious to the woman by the window? I say oblivious because I saw nothing in their attitude that suggested deliberately rude behavior. They were simply clueless to the options they could have taken to give the woman by the window space. Nonverbal communication can tell us more than verbal and I saw no smug expressions, no postures of superiority, and no deliberate stares to make the lady by the window uncomfortable. All I saw was a self-contained cocoon of oblivion to the rest of the room.
All of this suggests they came to the table already deeply involved in the topic of conversation they were having.
• Perhaps it was a life or death topic like an illness.
• Maybe they hadn’t seen each other is years and couldn’t wait to catch up.
• One of the women could have been hard of hearing in one ear so they had to sit in the position they choose to communicate.
• Perhaps they were not Americans and to sit that close was not an issue in their native culture.
The point I want to make today is that we just don’t know! But that doesn’t stop us from believing and acting as if we do know. We will believe what we want and not even (usually) question our thoughts. What we choose to believe about what we encounter happening around us can either make us happy or make us sad or not even cause a blip on our personal radar (aka be as oblivious as the two women) it’s our choice completely. I wonder if we are making that choice consciously and powerfully or are we on auto-pilot; quick to judge and cast blame instead of offering help and solutions?
For my part I was thrilled to be seeing my favorite subject in action. I love observing how people react in public. This was an example of what happens in what I call “Shared Space.” Personal Space still exists within Shared Space but the dynamics are different. When we are in Shared Space we are called upon to use the personal power we have amassed. If our personal power is insufficient to deal with the events of life, we will feel it as pain of some kind.
As an act of self-loving kindness, the next time you feel pain from an event you experienced, stop when you can take the time and review it. By doing this you will gain insight and clarity and quite possibly boost your own personal empowerment as a result. Consciousness is power.
Next time I’ll conclude my Eye Witness review by looking at the behavior of the Starbucks staff.
’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©
In my last blog “Coffee Space Invaded” I wrote about a personal space event at my local Starbucks.
Let’s look at the woman by the window again. What other options could she have chosen besides saying nothing and then leaving the building? Well, the possibilities are simply unlimited…
• She could have started a conversation with the two women. I’ve seen this often especially with the very social personality types or sales people.
• She could have stood up and moved her chair so she faced the window which would have forced the square table to be moved away.
• She could have asked the two women to sit on the other two chairs away from her.
• She could have started a coughing fit to annoy them.
• She could have directly stated that they move further back.
The possibilities are unlimited and each one takes a different inner power to enact; boldness, confidence, self-preservation, anger, an open awareness of the room and herself in it, etc. But none of those things happened and I can only guess at what was going on for this woman. What I saw might have been a shy easily intimidated and inwardly angry woman resulting in the the no comment, and the early leaving. Or perhaps she didn’t leave early and it only seemed that way to me.
What is my point? My point is this, it’s her business. It’s her personal space and she gets to do what she wants with it, or at least what she can do to the best of her ability at the time. Only the woman by the window knows for sure how this event affected her; did it make her uncomfortable, and uneasy or was she so consumed with her own world that she didn’t give it a notice? I will never know because I didn’t ask her. I only watched this play out and then drew my own conclusions which are again my business. Perhaps there were others in the room that also watched and had their own thoughts about what took place.
Bottom line; there is no right or wrong. There is only what happened and how it affected you personally and what if anything you would like to change about your response to it if it happens again.
Being aware of events around you means you have an opportunity for a more powerful life. Being unaware means you miss out on possible opportunities to learn, grow and engage the world. No matter which you choose, it’s your right in each and every moment. It is my hope for all of us that we become more open and aware about how powerful our choices are to both ourselves and to the people we encounter in our day.
Next time we’ll look at the two women at the square table.
Your Personal Space Coach©