Here we are, friends, stepping into a brand new year—a clean slate waiting for us to shape our dreams. I'd love nothing more than to sit by my fireplace with you, sharing a warm drink and hearing all about your aspirations for 2024. My busy days may not leave much room for quiet pondering, but I love to carve out intentional moments to reflect on the past year and envision my hopes for the future.
The idea of choosing a word for the year resonates with me more than crafting a challenging list of resolutions. Have you ever thought about selecting a word for yourself? The first time I heard about it, I'll admit it sounded a bit silly, but claiming a word for yourself can genuinely guide your goals and dreams. After completing a quick "positive/negative" exercise (explained below), I decided that my word for 2024 would be "PEACE." I thought about this and realized the best way to make my word all-encompassing was to ensure I'm creating peace in my home. Since many of you share a similar mindset about making your homes havens, I thought, why not chat with you about these ideas? Hopefully, it sparks some inspiration for turning your home into the perfect sanctuary that suits your needs this new year.
How to select a word of the year: If you've already picked a word, feel free to skip to the next paragraph. There's no right way to choose a word, but one approach involves creating positive and negative lists while reviewing the events of the past year. Skim through your calendar and jot down the good and bad things. Now you have two lists to consider. What you want to do is enhance the positive things and make more room for those in your calendar. Treat the negative list as your "Not To Do" list. Can you minimize the negative and maximize the positive? Perhaps there were events out of your control on the list; don't dwell on those—life happens. Only consider what's attainable for 2024. Your chosen word might be linked to a positive feeling from the past year or serve as the opposite of the negatives. Choose a word that genuinely inspires you. Maybe one of these words resonates with you:
How to envision the word in your home: Now that you've picked your word, imagine feeling that word as you go about your daily life at home. Really picture it. This is key: imagine YOUR home in all its real-life imperfections, not a fantasy home without clutter. How would your living room or kitchen look if you were embodying your word? Regardless of your current situation's size or condition, you can carve out a space that speaks your chosen word to you. This is what you desire, and you can develop a plan to achieve it. To truly revel in your home, forget the trends of 2024 and social media influences. Instead, focus on cultivating treasures and cozy home items that align with your chosen word.
The next step involves decluttering, guided by your word of the year. If an item fails to bring you joy, peace, or whatever word you've selected, it's time to let it go. Numerous inspiring decluttering techniques can be found on YouTube, and I highly recommend exploring them for motivation. Following the principles of Marie Kondo, decluttering becomes a mindful process of expressing gratitude and bidding farewell to items that no longer serve you. I love what Marie says about how to declutter properly, “When something doesn’t spark joy, give it a proper send-off. Express your gratitude and say goodbye. Only by letting go of items, one by one, can you truly face your past and begin to create your future.”
Once you've decluttered a room, be intentional with each home accent you reintroduce. Assess each decorative item, asking yourself if it truly brings you joy and aligns with your word of the year. Display items that best represent your chosen word. For instance, with my word, "PEACE," flameless candles find a place in every room, providing the tranquility I seek without the risk of open flames. They look like real flames and go on and off on a timer, so it’s the ultimate peace for me right now. Another element that embodies peace for me is the addition of fresh new pillows—soft, down-filled, and a source of comfort after a long day. I can sink into them, and the cares of the world just melt away. The subtle colors and patterns also bring my heart such peace. Lastly, the sight of gorgeous stems in a beautiful vase brings the calming influence of nature into my home without the maintenance of live flowers. Perhaps your word is quite different than my word of the year, and in that case evokes different items to incorporate into your rooms. Whatever you choose, the point is to design a haven that serves and nurtures you, and the positive aspects of life you’d like to enjoy in this new year. Let your chosen word weave through every corner, creating an atmosphere that's as unique as you are.
Remember that creating a home that resonates with your chosen word is an evolving process. It doesn't have to be perfect. Allow yourself the grace to make changes, experiment with different arrangements, and find what puts a smile on your face. The Interior Delights team and I are truly honored to be a part of helping you create a home that you delight in and that nurtures your soul. Here’s to a fantastic 2024, filled with all the goodness your heart desires within the walls you call home!