How to create space in your life - Physical Space : Part 2

First things first, let's get out your journal and start writing. Our journal prompt here is "How would I like my space to feel, and what do I need to do to achieve that feeling". Funny as you start writing what things come up and out. Writing it out doesn't mean you will remove it all in one fell swoop, but it highlights areas that we can improve to help you reach a sense of flow, joy, or calmness. Whatever you want in that space.

The physical space is one that we can associate quickly with the sense of achievement because it is visual, and hopefully, this will spurn us on to continue doing more.

Our physical space can, without realisation, be a massive part of feeling stuck, or in a rut, or overwhelmed. If you have watched Marie Kondo on Netflix, she explains how important it is for our spaces to feel uncluttered, as this gives us space to bring in things that bring us joy. We all need a little more of that in our lives. 

Recently I moved house (and I find this is a fantastic time to have a good clear out), and I decided that I no longer wanted to make do, but I wanted to create a space I truly loved. One of those spaces was my workspace. My partner was like, why spend on another desk; for me, it wasn't the spending; it was a picture of something I had longed to create. I had a picture on my wall for several years (it was a dream board picture I cut out from a magazine), and it had pretty cushions on a stool, with a nice desk, and plants and whatever else. Curated for a magazine, but it made me feel that I wanted a space similar to that in my life. I purchased my new desk for the new house, and it sat in my spare room for some weeks. Without use, I must say.

Why, you ask? I hated the spare room! It felt claustrophobic and dark and dingy. Even with my new desk in it, it just didn't make me feel creative or happy or bring me joy.

So, it came to me one night or very early in the morning (actually, morning is probably likely as I sometimes wake at 3 am to ponder crap) that I should move my desk to a bright spot in my living room. I only have a small three bedroomed cottage, so it's not like the living space is massive, but it has these fantastic big and sunny windows that I can look out. One day, I told my mum that I wasn't using my desk because I wouldn't say I liked the spare room and was thinking of moving my desk to the living area. You know what she said, "DO IT and DO IT NOW". Ok then! I asked my nine-year-old son for help, and we moved the desk, and I love the space. It doesn't consume my living space, nor my mind when I see it. I love sitting and working in the area. I have a picture of my son above, which makes me smile. I have a beautiful deck with plants that give me the sense of beauty and calmness I need in my workspace, laptop, and little else. 

It's become essential for me to make sure that my desk is clear before I start working. So now I work with joy, and that joy shines through the work I do with Wild Women (well, I hope so anyway). 

Physical space also applies in your home.

Here are the three top tips to start you off

  1. Decluttering is the most important start of clearing your space to allow new, wonderful and beautiful things in. It can start with a box of stuff you don't need or use and putting them in the garage to remove them initially from the space to see how it feels. I love a good wardrobe clear out too. What fits, what do you love wearing, and what is still in good condition or needs fixing (and then get it fixed) and everything else must go!
  2. Tidy spaces and put things away where they belong – clear benches, desks, and tables. If they don't have a space to belong to, maybe it's time to find it one, or to say goodbye - see above!
  3. Don't bring in or buy anything that doesn't make you happy either. Free or cheap is not always good unless you love it and want it in your space. What is the goal of the piece? If it is just a make-do, maybe patience needs to be used to get the things that bring you joy.

Life is what we make it, and nothing is ever as straightforward as we would like. If we take the time to create the physical space into something we love and want to be in, we will find joy, contentment, and flow will increase as we use it.  

Rebecca Jenkins is the founder of Where the Wild Women Are. She has a background in psychology and human resources, and enjoys writing about topics from gardening to feminism.

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