Mind & Spirit

9 tips for creating a sacred space

Author: Canadian Living

Mind & Spirit

9 tips for creating a sacred space

Your sacred space should be comfortable, separate from the rest of your home and appeal to all your senses. Here are some easy tips to help create that special place.

Pick a spot you like
Your sacred space doesn't have to be a room; it can be your garden or balcony -- anywhere you feel comfortable. (If your garden is your sacred space, you may have to move it inside during the winter when it's too cold and uncomfortable.) And it doesn't have to be large; it can be just a small corner of your house, as long as it's free from distractions.

Make your space sacred to you
When designing your sacred space, remember that it's your space; it should be pleasant and relaxing for you -- don't worry about anyone else.

Calm your scent-ses
Fill the space with scents that you enjoy and that make you feel content. Chamomile, lavender, vanilla, jasmine and rose are all scents that most people find relaxing. Karl Lohnes, an interior designer and design advice columnist in Toronto, says it might be as easy as opening the window to let in fresh air or adding a bowl of fresh-scented lemons to the space.

Colour your mood
Colours can have a great impact on your mood, according to decorator Holly Dyment. “They can stimulate you, make you calm, make you happy or make you depressed,” she says. Muddy colours are more likely to bring you down. Green tints are associated with the calming and healing effects of nature. Blue is mentally relaxing and helps you to sleep. Lilacs have a spiritual connection and would fit well in a sacred space. Lohnes recommends “layering” the tones of a single colour you choose, some lighter, some darker. “This creates a monochromatic room. It makes it easier on the eye, so when you walk into the room nothing is jumping out at you.”

Surround sounds
A lot of people overlook the importance of sounds, says Lohnes. “They will be relaxing in their beautiful bathtub with the kids yelling in the background” instead of putting on some relaxing music. If you really can't visit your sacred space when the kids are asleep or playing with their friends, there are tricks you can try to tune out excess noise: add a thick underpadding to your carpet, for example, or put pillows around the border of the room to help absorb sound.

Keeping kids out
The best strategy is to make it unappealing to the kids. Give younger children a more exciting play area to discover. Older children should be mature enough to respect your space. Let them know when you want to be alone in your sacred area. Be sure there's someone in charge of the younger kids.

En-wrap-ture
If your sacred space is a room with a window, get drapes that are the same colour as your walls “so they blend into the room and soften things around the windows,” says Lohnes. When the drapes are closed, it creates a cocoonlike effect. “The whole colour is enveloped around the room,”
says Lohnes.

Keep it low
Whether it's cushions, mats or beanbag chairs, keep all furnishings in your sacred space low to the ground. This will help maintain a serene environment. “Tall things in the room have vertical lines, which create energy going up and down,” says Lohnes, adding that this can impede your relaxation. Mirrors hung lower on the wall than usual could also enhance relaxation and reflection.

Make it your own
When creating a sacred space, be sure to include things that reflect who you are. But these items should also have a calming effect. If you're religious, you might want to include symbols that reflect your faith. You could also put in a photograph or painting of a nature scene that calms you. Many people find water relaxing, so a portable gurgling fountain might be just the addition. Not only does it create a soothing sound, but the refreshing, relaxing image of water might also wash away your troubles.

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Mind & Spirit

9 tips for creating a sacred space

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