How To Shake Up Your Style and Reconnect With Your Home (For Free!)

How To Shake Up Your Style and Reconnect With Your Home (For Free!)

Carolyn Purnell
Apr 20, 2015
(Image credit: Kim Lucian)

All too often, when we find a place for our things, they stay there. That can be a good thing–it can keep you organized, and it can make you feel more comfortable in your home–but sometimes, it means that you get into a rut with your belongings. They lose their luster and spark, and it's easy to then become convinced that you need new stuff or that your home is dull and uninspiring. But truly, you may just need to see your belongings in a new light.

If you are feeling bored with your space, my number one suggestion is to move stuff around! Whether you're moving furniture or just moving some knick-knacks, it's always good to shuffle your stuff. Here are some good reasons why:

1. It will give you a fresh perspective. Changing up the floor plan of a space is great for gaining new perspectives on a room. Just by moving a chair, you can have a completely different point of view and see things from a new vantage point. If your sofa was originally oriented toward an opposite wall, positioning it toward a window will make the room feel entirely different. If you've had a plant in one corner of the room, and you replace it with a chair, you will have a new line of sight across the space. You'll move through the space differently, look at the room differently, and experience the light, color, and sounds of the room in a new way. Rearranging can help you feel that your home is novel again, and it can help you rediscover the relationship your body has to your home's arrangement.

2. It will reintroduce you to the objects that you already have. If the same books have been on the same shelf for five years, it's easy to forget they're there. If you haven't touched the art and knick-knacks on your media console in two years, then they just become part of the background. By moving things, you can remember all those forgotten objects that once formed a meaningful part of your surroundings but that have faded into your unconscious over time. Moving things can be a process of rediscovery, and it can trigger helpful or meaningful memories.

3. It will help you reconnect to your home. In a similar vein, it will help you reconnect to the objects that you own. Touch is a powerful sense for connecting with objects. This is why you are much more likely to buy something in a store if you have picked it up or carried it around. Touch assimilates objects, so that you feel both a physical and emotional connection to them. Just picking up the photograph of your grandmother or the necklace that your friend gave you will often give you some kind of feeling that's more immediate than simply glancing at it. Moving objects allows you to physically interact with them, and it forces you to take a few moments to think about the object in question.

4. It will help you link the rooms in the home, making them feel more cohesive. If a mirror has always been in your bedroom, but you suddenly move it to the dining room, you will mentally link the two rooms. We form mental associations with objects, so seeing them in new contexts is often surprising, but it also helps create a sense of your home as a whole. Items become part of your whole home this way, rather than being an item relegated to a single room. By moving objects, you can create connections between the different parts of your home.

5. It will help you forge new connections and associations. Moving objects not only helps you create a cohesive picture of your home; it can also help you create new connections between the objects themselves. I know that color-coded bookshelves are controversial here, but think of how differently you see your collections when they are grouped by color versus subject versus alphabetical arrangement. Moving items helps you see new groupings, collections, and connections. Maybe you have a love of items with owls on them, but you never noticed because they were scattered around the house. Or maybe you seem drawn to certain colors, and you only noticed once you got everything in one place. Moving things around can be a process of discovery, not only of the items, but also of yourself.

6. There's no downside. You may hate the new layout and move everything back, but connecting with your stuff and exercising your design imagination is half the fun anyway.

So have fun, and get to moving!

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