Looking and Feeling Good at Home
Although you may not realize it, your home can actually influence how you feel about your appearance. And your appearance can go a long way when it comes to how you feel about yourself. Most of us have had a bad hair day, and although it’s doubtful that others pay much attention to the state of our hair, we think about it and it can affect our behavior. For example, we may be less outgoing or less apt to introduce ourselves to someone new or speak up at a meeting. How we think we look affects how we interact with others. A great way to love yourself is to take care of your appearance: buying flattering clothes, getting a new haircut, or going to the gym can all be uplifting, but keep in mind it’s not how the clothes, haircut, or exercise make you look, but how they make you feel. The people who attract the most attention in life aren’t always the most beautiful or best dressed, but simply confident people who are having a good time and therefore attracting other confident, happy people. Self-acceptance is the key to beauty.
Make sure your home reflects back to you a positive image of yourself. For example, do you have any current pictures of yourself displayed in which you love the way you look? Or do you have pictures displayed where you think you don’t look good or, even more common, do you display pictures from ten years ago when you were more slender or looked younger, but no great recent pictures? If so, how do you feel when you look at the pictures of yourself from ten years ago? Do you feel great that you were once that slim or do you feel badly that now you weigh more or have a few more wrinkles? Most likely it’s the latter, so take that picture down. The pictures you display in your home should make you feel great about yourself. Yet frequently people display pictures of their “ideal body” to inspire them—whether they are old pictures of themselves or pictures cut from magazines. This may work for some people, but for many it’s just a reminder that they don’t love their body now, which can make them feel badly about themselves and therefore feel less inspired to take care of their body. Loving your body now may actually make you more motivated to take care of it.
In addition to “checking in” with your photographs, also check in with the clothes in your closet. Make sure that all the clothes you own make you feel good about yourself and your body. Sometimes we hang on to clothes that are really comfortable, but when we wear them they make us feel frumpy and unattractive. Try to replace those clothes with items that are both comfortable and flattering. Chances are you spend most of your time in your comfy clothes and only about ten percent of your time in fabulous going out outfits. Get in the habit of dressing for yourself even when you are at home or for your significant other. There are plenty of comfortable and cute clothes. And similar to the pictures of you when you were more slender, make sure you aren’t holding on to a lot of clothes from your “skinny” days, or clothes you hope to fit into someday. These clothes can make you feel as though you are not good enough as you are now, and you don’t need to begin the day by opening your closet and seeing clothes that make you feel badly about yourself. The expression “what you resist persists” applies here. It is better to support and accept who you are now and let go of things that make you feel inadequate.
Also, look at all the mirrors in your home. Are they hung at an appropriate height? Are they old and therefore warped or distorted? Do you have mirrors that fragment your image, such as mirrors made from windowpanes? In Feng Shui, seeing yourself “in pieces” or distorted is an example of something that isn’t reflecting a positive image back to you. If you have a mirror like this and you absolutely love it, try hanging it somewhere where it doesn’t reflect your image, or place flowers or a statue or something in front of it and simply use it as decoration. You also want to hang mirrors you use regularly at an appropriate height so you can see your entire head without stooping or reaching. People tend to believe whatever is reflected back to them, so make sure a complete, positive image is being reflected back to you.
Finally, consider whether your home is supporting habits that contribute to your inner-wellbeing and therefore your outer-beauty. For example, do you have a place to workout at home? Are your workout clothes, shoes, yoga mat, tennis racquets, class schedules easily accessible? Is your bedroom set up for a good night’s rest or is it filled with reminders of unfinished business, doubling as a home office or centered around the television? Do you have a comfortable place to sit down and have a peaceful, healthy meal? Do you have an organized closet where your clothes are cared for and you can enjoy choosing outfits and getting dressed? Do you have a flattering full length mirror? Do you have a bathroom that can be a restful sanctuary stocked with bath salts and oils, candles, and fluffy towels? Is your home organized and clutter free thereby reducing your stress and contributing to your feeling confident and empowered? Is your home a reflection of your authentic self? Does your home inspire you with its beauty thereby reflecting your own?
If the answer to any of these questions is no, consider rearranging your home to support you as you take care of yourself and your appearance. Use your home as a tool to help support you in both looking and feeling good.