A house is not a home
As an old song goes, “A house is not a home”. And it’s true. ‘The Ideal House Exhibition’ just doesn’t have the same ring to it, does it? You only have to visit a show house to recognise there’s difference between a house and an actual “home”. No matter how skilful the architects, builders and interior designers or the sale teams (who sprinkle vanilla essence and keep the coffee pot perking to create a lived in, homely feeling when you view), it’s still only a house because it lacks the imprint of personalities and people living there, interacting with each other and the place.
There’s no place like home
Home is where we live; where we eat, sleep, laugh, cry, work and dream. “Indoors” we are ourselves and let down our guard. It’s where we rest and replenish our physical and mental selves and prepare for “out there”. It’s our foundation and launching pad to the outside world. I’m reminded of Roy Schneider playing Bob Fosse in All That Jazz. After his morning ablutions, he would check himself in the mirror and when was ready to face the world, he said, “Show Time”.
A reflection of your identity
Occasionally we hear of people who buy a house and all its contents and just move in. They avoid the hassle of home decorating, but they miss a real learning opportunity. For most of us, our homes evolve; growing and contracting to meet our needs as our lives ebb and flow; they are the outward expression of our inner being. Home can be a place where you grow spiritually and achieve your potential.
Your home is a mirror of your subconscious desires, hopes, dreams and fears and it reveals your beliefs and decisions about yourself and the world. You are taking responsibility by identifying what you are determined to have in your life, and creating a home that supports your dreams and desires will bring you closer to your goals.
Carl Jung said, “Everything in the unconscious seeks an outwards manifestation”. Discover your subconscious dreams and fears by looking around your home. Our identities are implanted in our homes. The style, possession, colours, everything there expresses some aspect of us.
Our experiences are the context, framework and structure of our lives. We bring our past experiences into the present with the symbols that we surround ourselves with. Our interpretation of our history is revealed in photographs and possessions.
The things in your home affect you because they are a bridge between the physical and spiritual realms. They shape and reinforce your identity (positively or negatively) revealing aspects or your inner world helping you to integrate and unify these realms.
We shape our dwellings, and then they shape us. Exciting stuff when you think about it, because if our homes are a manifestation of our lives, then we can change our lives or aspects of them, by changing our homes.
Transform Your Home, Transform Your Life
Most of us have some element of our lives that we are not completely satisfied with or would like to improve. Because your home is a reflection of you, it has the power to mould and shape your life and future. It can be your ally, and you will learn how to achieve your dreams and ambitions and meet your inner desires if you are open to the insights that you can gain from all aspects of your home and its location.
As you begin to change your physical environment you will change emotionally, psychologically and spiritually. It is exciting and comforting to recognise that in these confused, busy times our home is one tangible area of life that we can actually “get to grips with” and can be that launch pad into the outside world.
© Mary Evans Young 2013
Mary Evans Young lives in Oxfordshire, England and is the co-author of
Ageing with Attitude, a guide for baby boomers not ready to hang up their boots