Your surroundings, believe it or not, can have a profound impact on your outlook and performance. Much like a spring-cleaning or a fall dusting, a summertime cleaning and organizing of your surroundings can aid in giving your life a sense of calm and perspective. To start this healing process, all you need to do is choose one room. Do not attempt to organize the whole house at one time. Focusing your attention on one room at a time will make your goal feel attainable.
Remove all art and items hanging on your walls, and select a new wall color. A new color is the best and easiest way to visually refresh your environment. Select a color for your walls that is the opposite of the current color, and make sure it is a soothing shade that makes you feel relaxed. When it is time to re-hang your artwork, engage the help of a family member or friend who could act as a design buddy and discuss your plans about where you are going to hang things. Their perspective, which often will be different from yours, could guide you in a new direction. This is a foolproof way to achieve a new feel for your room.
Assess your current furniture layout and rearrange things. Seek out what is essential to your room, and ask yourself the questions: "If I lost that piece of furniture, would the room function? Would the room be less comfortable?" Being sincere with yourself about your needs is critical in turning out a successful simplified design. Throughout this process, keep reminding yourself, like a mantra, that the goal is to simplify and organize for a more streamlined future.
Bins and boxes are invaluable for storage and organization. Invest in a goof-proof labeling system — this can be great in the organizational aspect of this type of project. Keeping things organized and labeled will help you sort through all of your possessions and determine which are keepers. Honestly, do you need to keep the entire collection of teen magazines or the stuffed animal your first sweetheart gave you? Probably not, and this is the perfect opportunity to toss such items, list them for sale on an online portal or, better yet, donate them to charity. Planning ahead to make room for future projects or items that need storage is extremely rewarding and helps clear the mind.
Best of all, the warm summer months are perfect for a garage or tag sale. Inspire your neighbors and organize a collective sale. Your neighbors will thank you for giving them a kick-start in a cleaning direction and will be as happy as you are with your lighter and cleaner environment.
Finally, make it beautiful. Your surroundings most definitely affect your state of mind. If you want to make a change for a simpler, better life, make sure to adhere to a plan. Happy summer cleaning!
Joseph Pubillones is the owner of Joseph Pubillones Interiors, an award-winning interior design firm based in Palm Beach, Florida. To find out more about Joseph Pubillones, or to read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.