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Seven Avenues of Self-Discovery
T
aking stock of move on from a stage in
what’s important your life,” says Marcus,
to us comprises whether that stage is
two parts. First, we child-rearing, profes-
survey our beliefs and sional life or a relation-
values. Then, we con- ship that has changed or
sider how our homes ended. When we prune
reflect, or don’t reflect, away things that are no
those key beliefs and longer necessary to us,
values. The following saying yes only to what
toolbox can help spark we need, love and abso-
progress. lutely can’t live without,
“Having figured out the
we can better see the
Make Lists. Alexandra
‘What,’ the ‘How’ will
path ahead. We can sell,
Stoddard has her clients recycle, donate or throw
simply list 10 words
take care of itself.”
away things that no lon-
that define who they ger serve. Creating order
are now. The list might
~ Jill Butler
makes us feel more
include words like peaceful, confident and
“love,” “green,” “food” or “memories.” ready for creative action.
The next step is going from room to
room and seeing how well each space Ask Questions. Butler recommends
mirrors these values. asking the “W” questions. Where are
Jill Butler also recommends listing you now? What do you want? What
all of the activities we see happening do you see around you? “Ask yourself
in our reinvented home. It helps evolve what pleases you and makes you feel
the types of spaces needed and sug- good,” she says. Maybe it’s a cozy
gests innovative uses for rooms. color, a fresh breeze through the win-
dow or family photographs. Are these
Draw a Picture. Clare Cooper Marcus elements present now?
has given her clients a large pad of
paper, crayons and felt pens and asked Embrace Opposites. Katillac asks
them to detail their feelings about couples questions like, “What do you
home in a picture. In creating a con- want more of in your life?” She finds
cept of home that they could see, the the commonality in their answers, but
clients were better able to make those also celebrates the opposites—what
changes happen in their homes. each person wants without considering
the other person at all. For example,
Take a Field Trip. Kelee Katillac sug- one might prefer Zen-like, serene sur-
gests taking a “field roundings, while the other loves the
trip” in our own home. “Walk through rustic outdoors, but they both want to
your house now feel family-friendly and casual. So, a
and look for things that exemplify “Zen cabin” could become a transla-
something of your beliefs and values,” tion of their mutual desires. “I love the
she advises. “List objects and areas juxtaposition of two different ideas,”
that have special meaning to you. This says Katillac. “It’s all about helping
meaning may be known only people create a home that reflects who
to you—more of an association. You they are and who they want to be.” a
may also see many things there that
have no meaning to you; it’s time to let Pause. Wait for emotions to settle.
those go.” Don’t be in a hurry to decide this, that,
or all of it. Let decisions sit on the to-
Clear Out Clutter. The accumula- do list, undecided, for a while. Watch
tion of things we no longer really as the choices become clear naturally,
need signals “not wanting to let go or organically, quietly.
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