Monday, October 15, 2018

Spa inspiration

If you’ve ever been lucky enough to visit a beauty spa, think about the peaceful atmosphere created especially to relax you.  The few I’ve seen are always immaculately tidy and quite minimal in décor, even if they are just a small local beauty therapist.  I feel serene as soon as I step in the door.  Order soothes my mind and I immediately begin to relax.

Soft music is playing, the rooms are free of clutter and there may only be a few things displayed.  This helps the room feel calm and spacious, even if it’s a tiny space.  The lighting is dimmed; perhaps there is a lamp or fairy lights glowing instead of an overhead ceiling light.  The décor colours used are harmonious and often light in tone.

Thinking about a spa inspires me to apply some of those same principles to my own home, to:

  • Tidy things away to their rightful place
  • Declutter items that are there just because they’ve always been there (and I’m not particularly fussed on them anyway)
  • Organise items on display to look more attractive eg. group the body lotion, hand cream and shea butter on my bedside table onto a small tray
  • Think, speak and move in a soft and calm way
  • Dress simply and elegantly
  • Take the time to apply a face mask or moisturise my feet
  • Be organised with my time and not rush from task to task – do one then continue onto the next
  • Look at adding more lamps into my décor, there is no rule that you should only have one per room!
  • Have a playlist of relaxing music that I play in the background when I am at home by myself
  • Pretty touches such as a few flowers in a tiny vase

I can be guilty of leaving something sitting on a table for days (weeks!) on end, when it really only would take five minutes to find its proper home.  Being inspired by the orderly calming inspiration of a spa helps me find the motivation to deal with that object and restore a peaceful vista.

Our eyes subconsciously pick up on everything around us, so if we have bits and pieces lying around they are stealing our serenity.  The energy drained is more than if we expended the energy to deal with it!

I am inspired to create my own spa atmosphere at home, and you might be too.  Please share your thoughts – does the thought of a spa inspire you to tidy and simplify?  What is something you could do right now?


PS. My most popular book to date - Thirty Chic Days - has received a beautiful new makeover.  Isn't she gorgeous?  Available on Kindle and in paperback from Amazon.  Check out the 'Look Inside' function or order a sample to be sent to your Kindle to take a peek at the content!


Tuesday, October 2, 2018

How to make your dreams come true

When I look around at my new-ish work-from-home lifestyle, it’s often a ‘pinch myself’ moment.  Especially on a day like today – it’s springtime, the sky is a brilliant blue and it’s warm.  I am typing this blog post with two little dogs asleep in their bed in my office, and an ample-hipped cat sitting loaf-of-bread style in front of my keyboard.  I’ve just enjoyed breakfast and a coffee outside, then an orange from my tree a little bit after that.  I know, I’m sorry, it sounds like I am skiting with the orange-from-my-tree thing but it’s true.

I’ve always loved being at home, and dreamed of the day when I could retire from an external workplace.  I thought it would be in a happy housewife kind of way though, not a work-from-home way, but it couldn’t be more perfect for me.  I do feel like a happy housewife most of the time though, and write for fun.  Luckily I could see people around me doing similar things and self-publishing their work, otherwise I couldn’t have made it my job.  When you can’t see others doing something, you doubt whether you can do it yourself.

If you see a different, wonderful kind of life for yourself, please allow me to share my secrets on making your dreams come true.

No. 1. Conjure up the most perfect lifestyle you can imagine.  Make it amazing and note down all the little details that make it magical.  For me, I wanted to be at home, doing something creative and having a lifestyle like I am on vacation all the time.  I wanted our home to feel like a resort.  This is why my husband and I decided to move out of the city and to the small area where I grew up.  It’s a sunny wine region with its own micro-climate.  Because property is less expensive here we could afford a nicer home on land.  I had the resort-style vibe in mind, and our home even had its own palm trees :)

No. 2. Start doing more things that are fun to you.  For me that looked like my blogging and writing, and I decided to write about what made ME happy, didn’t matter if anyone reading thought I was flossy, flowery and airy-fairy.  If it made me happy, it belonged on my blog and in my books.  I play around with my style files and inspire myself with curated magazine pages and self-written inspiration in my journals, where I go to dream about pretty things, personal development and my own chic and feminine goals.  I also create with my hands – sewing, knitting and other handcrafts.  Not everything all of the time, at the moment I am taking a rest from knitting and have been using my sewing machine more for cushions and home furnishings etc.

No. 3. Don’t worry about what others will think.  If you love something, that’s the main thing.  I don’t try to change anyone else’s mind about anything, I just make my own fun and whoever wants to join me, joins me.  The surest way to writer’s (or blogger’s) block, is wondering what others will think of your work.  Don’t do it!  Write something that makes your heart pitter-patter and put it out there before you can talk yourself out of it.  Better still, put that thing out there and then run away.  Don’t think about it again.  Then move onto your next project/blog post/book.

No. 4. Be creative every day.  Don’t save it for special occasions because it will wither up and die.  Inspire yourself every day with your favourite form of creativity – writing, baking, photography, art, music, etc.  Ask yourself what you loved to do as a child if you’ve forgotten, and start doing that thing again.  Lift yourself up and make your life a symphony with the way you live it.  Make decluttering a regular part of your existence too.  I always feel more free and creative when I’ve let things go, things that are part of my old life, not the new vision for my future that I am constantly creating.  I’m not saying get rid of everything, just the things that feel staid and like they are pulling you back.  The clothing/furniture/décor items that feel authentically YOU whether you’ve had them for five minutes or twenty years, those are keepers.  Curate your life and move forward with lightness.

So those are my secrets, the steps in which I've started my dream life.  Now, what do you want to do with your precious life, starting right now?  Please tell me one dream that you’ve never told anyone.  Something that’s been knocking on your heart’s door forever and you keep telling it to go away because it’s too scary.  Go on, you know you want to share :)  You’re in safe company here.  As you will have seen in the comments, How to be Chic readers are beautiful souls.  I feel so lucky to have you visit, so thank you!

~ Fiona

PS.  Have you read my new book yet?  It’s been out for only a few weeks and I am thrilled with the response so far :)  It is still the number one new release in ‘Consciousness and Thought’, so thrilling.

You can ‘look inside’ on Amazon, and see if I am your cup of tea.  You are warmly welcomed!
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