When we talk about happy homes and working to create them, I worry a little bit that we are still looking for perfection. That everything has to be in a state of complete joy 24/7. But that’s not only unachievable, it’s a little undesirable too. Sometimes we will have off days or sick days where wallowing for a bit is just what we need before dusting ourselves off and getting back to focusing the happier life that we’re creating.
Part of embracing imperfection in our happy homes is that it’s not always going to be happy. It’s about how we decide to deal with the crappy days that will help bring the better days back ASAP. Life is a mess sometimes. And things are rarely ever a series of perfect moments that are strung together, but that doesn’t mean that we should give up and feel like it’s not worth even trying.
Last year I read the quote above and it changed the way that I not only thought about hills in terms of my running training (I used to loathe the hills, but I realised that they are not only a challenge but a joy too), but in terms of life and how to live a good (and happy) one. Maybe it’s worth looking at our happy homes just a little bit differently? Seeing them as our safe place where things may not always be perfect but a place where making mistakes is ok and a place where we can feel what we are feeling in that moment.
Yes, focusing on the better parts of our day, rather than always on the crap bits will help things feel better. But everything is not sunshine and roses all the time, and isn’t it also a wonderful thing to have a place where you don’t always have to put on your game face and play the part you feel you need to? We live different personas every day. Sometimes we are boss lady, or employee or parent or daughter or customer. And each of those requires us to act a certain way. Some days it’s tougher than others to switch from one to the other with a smile on our faces and a lighthearted tone.
A happy home should also have room for the days and times where you just need to curl up on the couch with a blanket and just have some down time. Where you have all you need when you feel unwell, whether it be trashy TV or a book and some tissues and some comfort food. I’m all for routines and making things run smoother, but there needs to also be a space in all of that for the times where you just need a break.
A space that allows us the freedom to bounce back from a rough day and where we can be free to make mistakes is much more important than one where we feel we need to show happiness all the time. Maybe we can look at the rough days as the tough ascents up the hill in the quote and the happy days are the swooshing down the other side?
Creating a happy home is something that I think is totally worth it. But I also think recognising that not everyday will feel like it, lets that guilt of not feeling perfect go. It says “man that was a crappy day, but hey, tomorrow is a new one and maybe it will be so much better”.
Being kind to ourselves is an important part of a happy home and realising that not every day will feel like your best can make it just that bit easier. Sometimes a safe space to feel what we feel is exactly what we need.
Does your happy home feel like a space where you can just be you, even on a tough day?
Note: The Embracing Imperfection series is a fortnightly blog post series, every second Thursday, where I talk about creating a great, happy home for you and for me. One where we not only talk about embracing imperfection, but where we make steps to do it. One where we focus more on the memories we are making and less of how picture perfect it might look from the outside. And one where we start where we are and stop waiting for things to be ‘just right’ before beginning.