Mindset Reset: How to See the Light at the End of the (Renovation) Tunnel

Apartment Therapy's Home Remedies

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It seems there's a phase in every renovation where it feels like the project is never going to end. It's when you're in deep and have already committed many resources, yet nothing is complete, and you're beginning to doubt that it ever will be. What to do?

  • Use positive imagery. Review your drawings (if you are working from drawings), inspiration boards, and cut sheets of new materials/fixtures. Talk about how the new space will be with your partner, architect, or close friend. Try walking through the space and projecting the final results on specific areas of the project. These exercises will remind you of where you are going.
  • Look at "before" photos. Sometimes when you're up to your eyeballs in the mess of renovation, you can lose perspective and simply wish for the safety and comfort of what was there before. Looking back at photos of the space before you started will remind you why you started down the renovation road in the first place. And seeing that horrible wallpaper or dated bathroom cabinet again will assure you, "Yes, it really was that bad".
  • Accessorize. Your new renovation will likely call for a few new accessories. Now is not too early to begin looking around. You may or may not want to purchase accessories until the job is complete, but even window shopping for new linens or art will get you back into that excited state of mind.
  • Take a break. As with anything, if the renovation is the only thing you are doing, you will tire and lose your zest for it. Get away for a weekend, get a massage, go out to eat. Even if you are doing the work yourself, the project will be there when you get back. You will be all the more invigorated by even a brief respite.
  • Plan to show it off. Without cutting dates too close (this will just add undue stress if you don't hit exact deadlines), plan to show off your renovated space. This can simply be by asking your parents stop in so you can show them the completed bathroom renovation you suffered through for two months, or a dinner party with friends to put your freshly-renovated kitchen to use.

Have you made it through a seemingly-endless renovation? How did you hang in there when it felt like it would never end?

(Image credits: Faith Durand)