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Author: Naomi CookFeng Shui General Home Organizing Room Transformation Spiritual and Holistic

The Psychology Behind Your Home

Artistic Bagua MapFebruary is the shortest month of the year, but it can also be the most depressing.  It’s cold outside, often gloomy, and really…who wants to get out of bed?!

It’s clear that a psychological tie connects people to the items that they hoard within their home.  Some people develop hoarding tendencies after experiencing a stressful life event that they had difficulty coping with, such as the death of a loved one, divorce, eviction or losing their possessions in a fire, according to The Mayo Clinic.  However, the psychology behind your home lies in how you choose to treat it with color.  Read below to see how colors can affect us both physically and mentally (via Squidoo.com):

Red – Increases enthusiasm, stimulates energy and action, and encourages confidence

Orange – Stimulates activity and appetite, and encourages socialization

Yellow – Mentally stimulating, activates the memory, and encourages communication

Green – Soothing, mentally and physically relaxing, and helps alleviate depression

Blue – Calming and sedate, cooling, and aids in intuition

Purple – Uplifting, calming to the mind and nerves, and encourages creativity

Brown – Stability, a connection with the earth, and offers a sense of orderliness

White – aids mental clarity, encourages us to clear clutter, and enables fresh beginnings

Gray – Unsettling and expectant

Black – Restful emptiness and mysterious, evoking a sense of potential and possibility

So, how do your favorite colors stack up?  What colors are your rooms painted currently? Let the colors be your guide to create an environment that suits your wants and needs.   Once you create the environment that you want, you may gain some new motivation to get organized.  You don’t need to totally redo your house to emit the same feelings; you can just use and/or reuse accent pieces from other areas in your home, like these:

Soft furnishings – Pillows and throws can add a great pop of color and keep you warm and cozy in the cold weather.

Lighting – Try some new lampshades or just switch out the light bulbs.  Soft white bulbs emit a warm yellow-toned light, while daylight bulbs like GE reveal® emit a more natural looking blue-toned light.  Hence, the color on your walls can be affected by whichever type of light bulb that you choose.

Artwork and Picture Frames – Find inexpensive prints from places like IKEA and even less expensive pictures, from your camera!  Put them into colorful frames or if you can’t find one of the right colors, consider spray painting a basic one!

Books – Head to a thrift shop to look for old hardcover books.  Peek under the flaps to see what color the cover is.  Pull together a grouping of books based on the colors you are looking for, it doesn’t matter what the subject matter is!  Organize some flat and some standing for variety on a bookshelf.

Candles – These come in a variety of colors, give off a pleasant scent and a bit of warmth on cold days!

As for me, my home is painted in blues, browns with white trim and I accessorize with those colors as well.  The blue offers me calmness, while the brown offers me a sense of orderliness and finally white encourages me to clear the clutter.  Pretty right-on for an organizer, huh?!

 

Author: Darla DeMorrowOrganizing Room Transformation

How Do You Get Organized, or At Least Fake It Well

Sometimes it’s not important to distinguish between being organized and looking organized. Perception is reality. Would you like to know how to fake being organized, even if you aren’t?

 

1. Keep repeating.

If you are a sucker for organizing magazines and TV shows, you’ll start to notice that repeated forms and themes are pleasing to the eye. Decorated rooms never have just one pretty storage box. There are usually lots of the same one artfully stacked. The organizing stores that you drool over, like IKEA, the Container Store, and Target, often have five to fifteen of the same item in one display. Even cheap plastic bins can be pleasing to the eye if they are labeled uniformly and stacked to the ceiling.

2.  Calm the color.

What do you see when you view a really cluttered room? It’s not the amount of stuff that your eye responds to, but that there doesn’t seem to be any order to the items, which are made up of shapes and colors. If those shapes and colors are rearranged and made to relate to each other, the same stuff in the same space can very often be harmonious.

3.  Clear horizontal surfaces.

This requires having other places to put stuff besides the counter, desktop, and dining room table. My own house sports a blessedly long kitchen counter that gets covered each and every day, but gets cleared several times a day as well. You may not be able to keep surfaces clear all the time, but being able to clear surfaces quickly is a handy trick. Hopefully you have a home for stuff that lands on your surfaces, but if not, do what you must. You might even know people who appear to have an organized space, but heaven help the unsuspecting guest who opens the drawers or closets. Booby-trapped drawers and closets can work, at least for a while.

4.  Decorate for the appropriate season.

Nothing says disorganized more than a Christmas tree out in April. Fake peonies hanging on the porch in January are a dead giveaway that the house isn’t being kept up. Nothing says you have to dress your house to the nines for each and every holiday, or even decorate at all for that matter. But if you are going to do it, keep décor seasonal and current.

5.  Take five minutes for you.

First impressions really are important. Take a moment to polish or clean your shoes each day. Before getting out of the car, check your hair and your teeth in the mirror. It may not be fair, but people do judge character by what they see. The Wall Street Journal reported not long ago that workers with organized desks are more likely to be promoted. At home, if you can’t keep the whole house organized, focus on just the entry ways (front and back) and the main room you would entertain in. Your guest room may be trashed, but people knocking on your front door don’t need to know that.

Being organized in your head and your space can lead to an amazing and full life without the guilt that many people report from being disorganized. These tips on faking it might just be the first step to getting a reasonably organized life – for real.

Author: Vali HeistRoom Transformation

Reorganize That Extra Room to Spark Creativity

Fall is a time for change and I’m not just talking about the leaves changing color. With the kids going back to school and families getting back on a schedule, many homeowners are looking at their current spaces and what they might be missing in their home. I’ve been working with a number of clients who want to transform an existing room (extra bedroom or the room where everything gets dumped) into a place where they can fulfill a dream that revolves around a hobby, a passion, or a business.

Do you want a room where you can start sewing, doing crafts, getting out the scrapbooking supplies, or creating a new office for a home-based business? Sometimes a room has to do double-duty, but the main focus is to create a space to go to and get those creative juices flowing. Let’s break it down:

The first step is to decide which room is the one to transform. Your new room/space should:

  • be on a floor that will be conducive to using it.
  • have a window to look out of if you want one.
  • have a door so you can close the door and leave things “out” and not put everything away when you have to stop for the day.
  • function independently, or it can do double-duty (e.g. guest room/office).

The second step is to clean out the room you want to move into. First, sort through the items you can see. Sort the closets and drawers next. Set up a staging area on a bed, desk, or table to sort items (sorting from the floor kills your back). Make categories for:

  • belongs in another room
  • donate (to people and animals)
  • sell on eBay, Craig’s List, or consignment
  • return to/belongs to someone else outside the home
  • trash
  • keep in the room

Try not to leave the room while you are sorting. If you have difficulty making decisions on whether to keep something or not, do a quick sort first and then make a second pass at the more difficult items. After you are done sorting, take all items that don’t belong in the room to its new home.

The third step is to look at the furniture in the room:

  • Determine what isn’t going to stay in the room and take it out.
  • Bring in any furniture that you’ll be using for your new space.
  • Try to remix, reuse, or repurpose things you already own instead of buying new.

Finally, organize the new room by zones:

  • Working table/area
  • Storage areas inside closets, on shelves, and in cabinets.
  • Use room dividers or rugs to zone off the room if needed.
  • Containerize your items by how you will use them: open, closed, opaque, solid, pretty, or utility.

Change the layout of your room as your life changes or as you change the projects you are working on. As the saying goes, life is not a dress rehearsal; don’t wait to follow through on those dreams and wishes for your home, especially if it’s just a matter of rearranging and not major construction. Don’t just dream about what your truest life could be, organize it to be so! Good luck!

Clutter Quote: “Our truest life is in our dreams awake.” Henry David Thoreau, American author, poet, philosopher.