How do you feel when you come home each day? Sure, we’re all a little gassed and just want to decompress, but does your space really allow you to do that?
If you get down to it, do you truly love where you live and actually WANT to spend time there?
For me, that’s been a struggle… If I had to count, I’d say I’ve lived in at least 20 homes thus far, which means getting attached to one space hasn’t really been an option. However, when I was seriously struggling with anxiety a few years back, my counselor kept telling me,
“Catherine, you need a Sanctuary. A place to come home to…”
At the time, I heard her, but didn’t really hear her, if you know what I mean? I was busy living in a super fun and exciting part of Seattle, eating out all the time, and living for Happy Hour! I thought I was living my best life, however it didn’t occur to me that my super fun, on the go lifestyle might have been contributing to my stress levels. You see, I lived in a trendy and totally overpriced postage stamp that had zero amenities. I stored kitchen supplies in my mini-stove and didn’t have a washer/dryer, dishwasher, or even a parking place of my own. My place was so small I could open the refrigerator from my bed and sure as hell didn’t have room for a couch or a table! It was the tiniest little thing, but it had exposed brick, and in my mind, that was more important at the time…
As I started taking my stress levels more seriously and also began working on my relationship with food, I succumbed to the fact that I needed to learn how to get comfortable being uncomfortable. For me, that meant forcing myself to learn how to sit at home with my feels rather than go out, get comfortable with cooking and keeping food in my house again, and if I did choose to sit in bed and eat an entire bag of Boom Chicka Pop, I was sure as hell going to do it intentionally! The whole process was incredibly uncomfortable, but it also taught me how to really NEST.
In my mind, I thought “Nesting” was just another word for decorating and already felt pretty at home with throwing some money around to make a place look cute. I mean, even the postage stamp had its charm! Having a cozy home wasn’t exactly a model I grew up with, so I never really valued that aspect of a home space. In the South, it’s all about how your place looks, versus how it feels, so rewiring my brain took a little time…
Then I met my partner, Eric, and quickly realized there was no room for one of us, let alone two in the postage stamp, so it was time to look elsewhere! I decided to finally take my counselor’s advice seriously and looked for an apartment that had more to offer on the inside versus the outside this time. My search fortunately paid off as I’m the proud renter of a parking space, washer/dryer, dishwasher, and even have separate rooms for my refrigerator and bed now!
And man was she right! Finding a spot that feels like a sanctuary has been a total game changer for me! My stress levels have gone way down, just by removing those tiny little micro-stressors from my former postage stamp life…
Also having a space where I actually want to spend my time, has positively affected so many other parts of my life and routine as well! I now want to cook more, go to bed early in my cozy room, go on walks in my beautiful neighborhood, stretch on my living room floor, keep a tidier home because I take pride in where I live, do my laundry more regularly because I can, post inspiring messages on my normal sized refrigerator, and surround myself with little things that just make me happy!