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Three flights of stairs, the key always makes a little click as it turns, umbrella on the left, light switch on the right. But I could quite easily get to the kitchen - the other side of the living room - in the dark: I’m home.
When it’s your own house, it’s easy to fall into habit. You know every corner, you remember exactly where you put things - most of the time, anyway. And since a balanced routine is essential for those who work at home, and a sense of familiarity for those who return at night, there are some small measures you can take to create a peaceful atmosphere and make the most of your living space.
Here are five simple ways to feel happy at home.
To be happy you need to smile: it’s obvious, isn’t it? But when you get home after a day of work and traffic, it may not be so easy. But there’s something you can do to help: hang motivational prints on the walls, images that make you feel good, photos that remind you of happy moments.
It’ll be hard not to smile, especially if you choose to display them in strategic but often neglected places, where you spend most of your time in the morning and the evening, like the kitchen or the bathroom.
These days it’s harder to spend time with people you love, due to distance and the difficulty of reconciling busy timetables. In addition to dinners you might organise at the weekend, create little excuses during the week to share some time that otherwise you’d spend alone.
Why not invite Giulia over to watch the new season of your favourite series together? It might even turn into a weekly date!
Having a welcoming home makes your guests happy, and you too, but don’t take on too much: remember that it’s also the place where you can spend time alone, doing the things you enjoy. Choose a corner or an entire room and devote it entirely to relaxation; create your “do not disturb” space where you can listen to music or finally finish that book you were given last Christmas.
Endorphins are the best ally for a good mood. If you don’t have the time or the desire to go to the gym, there’s good news for your feelings of guilt: you can easily keep fit at home too! The internet, Pinterest in particular, is full of solutions for doing your workout with limited space, using the sofa and chairs as benches or steps.
And don’t forget to stretch out when you’ve finished!
How good does it feel to say thank you? A sense of gratitude helps us to feel rewarded for our efforts and difficulties, lightens the heart and encourages smiles. According to Marie Kondo, the same feeling occurs when we think about the objects we love and which are truly useful to us: the things you need to save from the decluttering, and surround yourself with in order to feel good at home.
Don’t forget that home is a place where you can escape, disconnect from the world and relax at last. Sometimes it’s love at first sight when you walk in, other times it’s a relationship you need to build and cultivate over time.
But giving up at the first chipped tile or the orchid that stubbornly refuses to flower is definitely not an option: everything can be fixed, including your home, and if you can’t do it yourself, ask for help. Except when it’s the washing-up: it’s not very polite to ask your guests to do it.
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