HARNESSING HARMONY | DESIGN FOR THE NOMAD
In this day and age, there are SO many opportunities all over the world for an abundance of professions. Now more than ever millennials are searching for not only their purpose but their passion: What is it and where can they find it. The only way to figure that out is by trial and error. What better way to do that than with a profession that lets you travel the world?
Today’s traveling professions include bloggers (duh), peace corps volunteers, travel nurses, truck drivers, photographers, writers & journalists, cruise ship/airline industry occupations. What’s not to love? You get to experience new places, meet new people, and find your passion. Isn’t that what life is all about?
The ONLY downfall is that feeling of being homesick. When you constantly travel and are seeing all these new places and trying all these new foods and meeting all these new people, do you really have a “home”? A place you go Every. Single. Day. A place where you actually want to be because it feels safe and inviting as you belong.
The “box” you go back to after a long day at work might just be a roof over your head for the time being, but there are some ways you can create a space that will put your mind at ease and give you that sense of belonging, that sense of home.
Some (or most) of you may not know I received my first Bachelor of Science Degree in Interior Design from a CIDA (Center for Interior Design Accreditation) accredited program at Colorado State University. I am not just telling you this to tell you this, but I’m telling you this because I learned some tried and true (and also logical) theories and practices to create harmonious, organized, balanced spaces that will make anyone feel like they immediately belong. I’ve also moved 10 times in the past 9 years to 5 different cities, so I’ve had to deal with the hustle it takes to uproot your life and start over a few times. I’m sharing FIVE tips to harnessing harmony in your space as a traveling professional.
Storage is your best friend.
Contrary to popular belief, your space is going to feel like your space without having everything you own out in the open for you and everyone else to see all the time. Your mind will still know it’s there, but your brain won’t go haywire looking at clutter.
If you have small items like jewelry, office supplies, kitchen utensils, barware, basically anything smaller than an apple, get it OFF your counter and into a drawer or cupboard. If you want to make things easy while you travel, investing in some organization boxes like these and these, where you can keep your small items in your house and on the road would do the trick.
Organize your furniture so it’s comfortable, not perfect.
I once went to a house that was BEAUTIFUL and everything was so pristine and white and clean and the furniture was perfectly in the center of the room with 4 chairs facing each other and all I wanted to do was NOT sit down. A home can be pretty, but it needs to be functional.
Create easy, warm textures with lightweight throws and accent pillows. Arrange seats so it’s more conversational than formal. People don’t sit in a living room in a circle staring at each other talking. People sit (read: lay) in a living room reading books (read: watching Netflix) while sipping on a glass of Bordeaux (read: that red wine that was $10 at Publix) atop a bearskin rug (read: cuddled under blankies with fuzzy socks) in front of a roaring fireplace (read: 55” TV). Be realistic about what your spaces are going to be used for and make their function your priority. If the space FUNCTIONS for you, you will feel at home.
Take the technology OUT of the bedroom.
Your mind needs a place to relax. The last hour before going to bed should not be in front of a TV or a phone screen (although I’ve heard those blue light blocking glasses do help for right before bedtime). Even with the sudden appearance of these cool new glasses that are all the new rage, your mind is going 10x faster taking in everything that’s happening on that screen than what it would be doing in real life.
Think about how quickly a TV show or movie fits in all that information about how the girl met the guy, they fell in love, they got prego, yada yada yada. Or how many people’s lives you scroll through on that Insta feed. Your brain has to process all that information just as quickly as it took it in. Technology is a WONDERFUL thing (words spoken by a blogger, of course) but don’t let it take away your brain’s “cool down” time. Let it prepare for a little rest. After all, you probably just worked a 12-hour shift (or more!)
Create a welcoming workspace.
We ALL work from home at some point or another. Whether it’s completing a project to meet a deadline or checking a few emails off your to-do list, it’s still work. To make sure your home feels like a home and not an extension of work, create a space designated as such so it doesn’t consume your entire home.
Get a small desk for the living room where your laptop can live, or even a designated shelf where you can pull it over to a spot on the couch if you’re cramped for space. Designate some sort of area where your mind says “Ok, let’s get to work.” And when you leave that space, leave that mindset as well.
Keep your belongings light.
As travel professionals, you’re going to be picking up and moving your things constantly. When you’re investing in any small furniture that will be traveling with you, think about the weight it carries. Style doesn’t have to come with heftiness.
Another area to cut back on the weight is clothing. Organizing a closet so multiple outfits can be thrown together with a few simple items can save you a ton of weight and a ton of space when cramming your life into a vehicle. I’ve linked an article here by one of my favorite bloggers on how to go about creating these types of wardrobes. You can probably do it with most of what you already own!
Thank you all so much for reading this post! I hope you’re able to take something away from it that will help you on your next journey. I wish you the best of luck (and a ton of fun!) on your adventures!