How to Create a Haven at Home


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In a perfect world at the end of the work day, you’d come home and be able to unwind. Your to do list is done for the day, your apartment is perfectly clean, you already meal prepped dinners last Sunday night, and you pour yourself a glass of red wine. Or we’d cuddle up on the couch with a cozy blanket, a cup of hot tea, and read a book or catch up on our latest Netflix addiction.

But as we all know, life is messy; as much as we try, it doesn’t always look like that. But wouldn’t it be nice if it did? Why should you come home from a long day at work to a messy apartment and spend the rest of your evening cooking dinner, cleaning up, and doing household chores? Our home should be an escape at the end of the day. You’ve spent the entire day working, so you deserve at least that!

This is a passage from an article on The Everygirl, which is one of my favorite lifestyle sites for women. I read it and was instantly inspired to create a haven for myself at home – a place where I can come home after a long day and be instantly put at ease.

I am a person who is deeply affected by my environment, so this idea particularly appeals to me. If I come home and my bed isn’t made and there are clothes strewn across the floor, I begin to feel like I don’t have my life together. Sure, that may not exactly be logical, but something in my brain connects a zen, organized living space with a happy, productive life.

Knowing this, I try to make an extra effort when it comes to keeping my space clean, making my bed every morning, and paying attention to the aesthetics of my living space. However, there are still some ways that I could take it a step further, creating a cozy oasis for myself that helps generate that rush of tranquility that comes from feeling totally at home.

Let’s discuss some ways that you can make your home into a cozy haven that you can’t wait to come home to each night.

Make your bed the coziest bed ever.

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I’m putting this one first because to me, having a cozy bed is the most inviting thing you can have in your home. Your bed is your space to lounge, read, rejuvenate, and rest, so create it in a way that invites total tranquility to your mind and body. When you look at it, the tension should magically slide away, knowing that it’s time for you to put worries aside and allow yourself to rejuvenate. Use lots of soft pillows and cozy throws to create lots of textures and layers that make you want to snuggle up.

Tidy up.

You don’t have to be a neat freak, but being mindful about putting things in their proper place will make you feel like you have your life more together (at least it does for me), and will create a less stressful environment for you to come home to. You don’t want to come home to a sink full of dirty dishes, a sloppy unmade bed, and dirty clothes all over your bedroom floor after a really tough day at work. Rather, make it a habit of loading the dishwasher every evening before bed, always placing dirty clothes into the hamper, taking five extra minutes to make your bed each morning, etc. It really will make a difference in how you feel when you return home at the end of the day. Instead of an environment of chaos and clutter, you will be welcomed into a space where you can kick off your shoes and put your worries aside.

Light candles.

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Candles and flowers are my top two “luxury” items that will take your living space from a home to a haven. Treat yourself to some candles (or ask for some for Christmas!) and place them around the areas that you prefer to relax and unwind. Maybe it’s your bathtub, or your reading chair, or your yoga mat, or your bed. Then, when it’s time to unwind at the end of the day, set the tone by dimming or turning out the overhead lights and lighting your candles. You will be instantly transported into a place of relaxation and ease, and it’s a lovely ritual to help your body and mind recognize that it’s time to slow down. Another great luxury is to treat yourself to some fresh flowers from your local farmer’s market or grocery store and keep them in a place you spend a lot of time. Maybe it’s at your kitchen table so they brighten your mood right away as you make your way to the coffee pot in the morning, or maybe it’s on your coffee table so you can enjoy them as you kick up your feet at the end of the day to read a book.

Have things around that bring you joy.

When you decorate your home, be strategic and mindful about bringing things into your space. Don’t just buy furniture and decor to take up space, but hold out for things that make you light up with joy. That could be a cozy reading chair, a lively painting, a framed photograph you took on one of your trips, or a shelf full of books that demonstrate your passions and interests. Be picky about what belongs in your living space because it can definitely affect the way you feel when you come home at the end of the day. If your home is filled with items that you truly love, it will be much easier to feel totally at home and relaxed in your space.

Keep little indulgences on hand.

Keep small things on hand that will help you slip into that next level of coziness and relaxation. Maybe it’s your favorite tea, some quality dark chocolate, a luxurious body lotion, silky pajamas to slip on… whatever it is that you look forward to at the end of the day that will help you unwind and totally let go.

cozy spot:

 


 

What to do when you’re sharing your home.

All of this sounds like a lovely, unrealistic dreamworld right? Maybe you leave the house spotless in the morning, but when you return home there are toys scattered across the floor, dirty dishes on the kitchen counter, and your husband has left his sweaty gym clothes on your bedroom floor. Sound more realistic?

Unfortunately, we can’t all live in a space of undisturbed zen. In fact, I don’t have my own place at the moment, and my boyfriend seems to have a knack for leaving dirty towels and underwear on the bedroom floor. So, take the above advice and apply what you can to your own situation. Maybe you have a roommate who has much different decorating taste than you, but you create a bedroom that is uniquely you. Or maybe you talk to your family about how important it is for you to have a peaceful space to come home to in the evenings, so they make sure to leave your yoga area or your reading spot undisturbed. Even if you don’t have your own place, you can still create little areas in your home that are mini havens, in which you can feel totally relaxed and at ease.

The key here is not to strive for unachievable perfection, but rather to make an effort to make your home a place that you can feel totally relaxed in. Maybe it’s as simple as buying yourself a new candle or cozy throw. Honestly, it’s the little things that make such a difference in the way we feel each day.

 

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