Is Your House a Home?

(Decorating the dorm room.)

(Decorating the dorm room.)

Seeing as my major in college was architecture and interior design, I’m often drawn to the metaphor of the body as a house. Since biblical times, people have been encouraged to treat our body as a temple. Yet the body is greatly influenced by our external surroundings, especially at home where we spend the most time.

Last month when I took my daughter to college, some of the girls’ rooms were so extravagantly decorated you could see the influence of DIY sites like Pinterest. It was like they were all trying to bring a part of home with them and express their unique personalities, even in their otherwise generic dorm rooms.

Is your home an expression of you? This can show up in both positive and negative ways. If your mood is more negative or dark, you may see that in your décor and color choices, darkness or clutter.

If you started out feeling negative while in the throes of your eating disorder, and have now started the recovery journey, it’s important to make sure your outsides continue to match your insides.

There’s a saying in substance abuse recovery, “Nothing changes if nothing changes.” It’s really important for people coming out of intensive recovery for addiction to not just jump back into the same environment they were in when they were using the substance.

Brightening up your décor doesn’t just do a better job of matching your blossoming recovery, it can boost your mood even further. So go on and choose some uplifting yellow paint, or colorful artwork for the walls.

Create a sacred space in your home, whether an altar or just a cozy corner somewhere, where you practice yoga, journal, meditate, pray, or just sit and completely relax.

Carefully consider all elements in your space, including color, furniture placement, artwork, accessories, and comfortable seating. Also, intentionally surround yourself with favorite things and objects that symbolize people, places or memories that you love, e.g., shells from the beach, photos or special gifts.

A good first step might be to take a really good look around, really take it in objectively. You might even call a friend to come over and give their impressions. Answer truthfully, is this space helpful for your healing, or contributing to your lowered mood?

Is your house a home?

In the next few posts we’ll look at a few specific rooms of your house, and how they can support your healing and recovery.

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