Similar to the slow food movement, slow living is an intentional focus on living slower. It’s a call to put away your devices, mute your incoming text, email, Twitter, messenger and Instagram notices. Not everyone has to know everything, all the time, right away. Thing is, it becomes addictive and we become obsessive. Everyone is suffering from FOMO, or the Fear Of Missing Out.
It’s time to unplug and become reinvested in your own life, to reconnect to your family, your friends and yourself. Science has proven that everything has energy – even things we assume are inanimate or dormant. We react to and are influenced by the energy of everything around us. As a simple observation, take note of the space you are in right now and how it makes you feel. To use a phrase from Marie Kondo’s book The Art of Tidying Up “does it spark joy?” Are you comfortable, do you feel nurtured, supported? Is it warm? Is the lighting appropriate? What kind of mood does it put you in? Do you feel inspired to create something, or sit back with a good book? Do you feel relaxed or energized, or both? Are there too many things in the space that distract you? Is it inviting, or does it make you want to walk away? Take those thoughts with you and go through every space in your house, especially rooms where you spend a lot of time.
In The Family Room
We’re going to focus on one of those spaces – the family room – where you escape the world and reconnect with those closest to you. Of course, the look and feel of your family room will depend on your family. Whichever category your family fits, the goal is the same: to create a space where connection is key.
Creating your family room should be a fun project, but it can also be a little challenging. There are so many options. It may help to keep a few basic rules in mind as you create your space.
Measure it and draw it on a piece of graph paper. Understand the limitations as well as the advantages. Show the flow of traffic in the space, especially if there is more than one door or if it’s close to a stairway. Note where the windows are, their size and orientation. South facing will give light all day long; north facing will give very little light.
Provide enough seating as well as the comfort level you want. Draw it to scale on your floor plan and if it looks good, mark it out with painter’s tape on the floor. Don’t forget lighting – lamps should be functional as well as decorative.
Choose colours that make you happy
Neutrals are great for the major pieces that you won’t be changing any time soon, but accents – rugs, cushions, an accent paint colour or small amount of wallpaper can go a long way in adding personality.
Incorporate the things that bring you joy
Tell your story: collections, photos, musical instruments, pieces of art or mementos from family trips or walks on the beach.
Keep it real
It’s a space where you can totally be you, where gatherings are all about connecting with your loved ones, sharing time together and enjoying each other’s company. If it’s not totally tidy all of the time, relax. It’s life, not a photo shoot.
At the end of the day, it’s wonderful to have a place where you feel welcomed, nurtured and comforted. A room where you and your family can truly Love Your Space!