*A note from the author: This podcast episode (as well as all future episodes) will be transcribed automatically. The author is currently aware of, and getting hives at the thought of, all of the grammatical errors she's finding as she proof reads her transcript. She recognizes that her former English teachers are likely rolling over in their graves, if that is where they currently reside, but also knows that some things just have to give. Please feel free to listen instead and be sure to read non-podcast posts so you can rest assured that she does, in fact, know how to compose written words into proper story telling.*
Links mentioned within the show:
Facebook Community: bit.ly/design101group
5 Secrets for Elevating the Look of Your Home This Weekend: bit.ly/5homesecrets
Book a call: figandfarmathome.com (tab: work with me)
Have you ever bought a special dress or a special perfume? Maybe an expensive nail polish that you've thought 'I'm just going to tuck it away until the time is right until I'm ready to use it.' And then time goes by and you never use it. What is it do you think that holds us back, allowing ourselves to use the special thing? Like the special china? Do you remember those days? If you're young enough, maybe, maybe the trend now is you don't register for china for your wedding, but it was when I got married and my guess is it was for a lot of you. You registered for it because you thought you should, but you never use it - even at Thanksgiving. Sometimes it feels like too much work to pull it out to use. I remember doing that with mine. I remember not even registering for it because I thought that was a little bit too much, but I found a set of Costco and I thought, well, every bride needs a set of china. So I got a set and I tucked it away in a nice little hutch and I never used it. Maybe once or twice, but I really, it was one of those things where I pulled it out and I had to hand wash it and that was too much work. So I ended up selling it. And the best thing was, it was honestly strange to me at the time, maybe a little bit weird, but now I think I am so glad I sold it to the person I did. I didn't know them, but they were people who were going to use them for everyday dishes. That's what they told me. Today, in a way, I'm challenging you to think beyond 'let's save it until a special day.' The reality is that someday might not come. I don't want to go down that road, but that is a reality we all live with. But why are you not special enough to invest in yourself in the way that pulls out that special dress or pulls out and uses that beautiful decadent, perfume, or nail polish or china or whatever it is. And that thought process is similar to what we're talking about today.
Limiting beliefs that hold you back from getting started in making choices that are intentional choices to love your home and to love it well, to design your space to be a reflection of you and to tell your family story and to tell it in a way that when you walk in the door there is no doubt that this space is yours. Over the years I've had so many conversations that look like this. I'll tell them that I'm a home decorator when they ask what I do. And the answer is generally, 'oh, that's so fun,' which it is. When you tap into creativity and if you have a creative mind yourself, you can appreciate that. Doing art every day is, is a fun thing. And it is, but then the conversation would go like this. So it started, 'oh, that is so fun. I am not going to decorate my home until my kids are gone. I'm not going to decorate my home - it's just too expensive. My husband and I don't...' whatever it is, it always goes to an excuse that says why they are not worthy enough to have a home that they love, why they feel like they can stop before they start. And today we're talking about 10 of them, 10 excuses (or limiting beliefs) that I've heard over and over and over. And I am going to share the most sad one for the end. I laugh, but it's not funny. It's just not funny.
As I share with you what they are, I am going to be a little bit of a devil's advocate and tell you why I just am not buying it. I mean, if we go back to the beginning of the show, we've already talked about you stepping into your worthiness, you understanding and saying, you know, we don't have to wallpaper our home with diamonds. That's not what I'm talking about. What I'm talking about is investing in your space a little bit, because when you invest in your space, that is where we spend our time. That is where we spend the majority of our time. That is where we, as mamas, we are pouring into these teeny tinys who are looking up to us. That is where we have family meals and we make plans for the week. And we pour ourselves out, constantly into these little humans so that they can then go out into the world in a productive way we hope.
But if we are surrounding ourselves with chaos, if we are surrounding ourselves with visual fields that just make us feel something is wrong. Once you change your environment - I mean, that's why when we go on vacation, sometimes it feels like a release, right? We're looking at four different walls. Maybe we don't have the weight of what's happening in those walls, like the dishes and laundry and all that to bog us down. But sometimes when you create an environment that is one that you like coming home to, you can be more productive. You can feel not as stressed about doing the laundry. You can feel that the systems you put into place in order to run your home and run it well are actually not a chore. You can feel like inviting the friend over and not having to spend 15 minutes explaining why you're so embarrassed that your walls aren't done yet, or that project isn't done yet. Why you don't have to do that? That is what I'm talking about. Okay. I'm off my soap box. We're going to be talking about all of that pretty soon, but let's get to it.
The limiting beliefs I hear a lot and why I'm just not buying them and why I think I can help you break through each and everyone. Some of them you're going to hear a similar answer to, and then what's going to happen in a few weeks time - we're going to hear actually from one of them, one of my clients who I helped break through, she had a limiting belief. All of my clients have at some point, it's something different each one, but how we broke through. And that's what we're going to be bringing to you is examples of clients who have a limiting belief and hopefully they'll encourage you.
Okay, here we go. One is that it is, it just costs too much. Designing a home, decorating a home costs too much. Okay. If you are shaking your head, yes. Or if you were raising your hand or if you are saying 'yes sister' to that and that is the thing that's holding you back...I want to challenge you to think about this. Yes. If you need to or want to decorate and design your entire home. And by the way, when I say design, I don't mean knocking down walls. I meaning we are creating a functional, beautiful space that serves you well. Okay. So I'm not talking about the knocking down the walls. Yes. That could be super expensive. But if you feel like you have to walk in and redecorate everything in a weekend, think about how many rooms have in your home. 10, 15?
You're thinking about, gosh, I need to do my whole house in a weekend. Yes, absolutely. That is way too expensive. Way too expensive. I've only had one client who hired me to do their whole house at one time. It was thousands of dollars. And that is never the approach I take. That was an exception to the rule. Even if you are not walking in to your whole house and you think, you know what, I don't actually need my whole house done. I just need my living room done. Okay. Same approach. If you walk in and you expect, and you think I need to go from ground zero to complete restyle/redecorating new furniture, new paint, new arch, new this, new thiat, if you think that you have to do that all at one sitting, yes, it can be too expensive. And I think sometimes when we lack patience and we don't know the route we need to take to go from making a plan to even begin, we get sucked into spending too much money. We get sucked into making poor choices. And then ultimately we spend too much money. We get sucked into this idea that I have to go, and let's say your source is Target. I'm just going to use that as an example, you go to Target. And if you're going to buy the whole spring collection of whatever Joanna Gaines has on the shelf, that is going to be too expensive. But once you know what pieces, what things you can do in the timeline that you should do them in to make the biggest impact first - then we're golden. Then this no longer becomes an issue because it cost too much because generally, I don't know anyone who can go out and design an entire home in a weekend. I don't. Do you? Okay. So all that to say, girlies, if you feel like you have to tackle it all and not even in a weekend, we'll say in a month, that is an unrealistic expectation and that is fixable. There are things you can do to make big impact, huge impact first, and then the next steps to make the next big impact. And you can change an entire room in the course of six months without breaking the bank. I guarantee it. All right.
Next limiting belief. It is overwhelming. Yeah. It can be overwhelming when you go in and you, when you don't know what your aesthetic is, it can be super overwhelming because you can appreciate one style and another style and another style. But until you know what your aesthetic is, it can be really overwhelming because you walk into a store and you're drawn to the pretty blues of the nautical style. But then you see images on HGTV and you're thinking, oh, a farmhouse is so adorable, but then you go into boutique and you think, oh, but this is so sweet. And it's like those handmade Indian blankets. Until you know what your aesthetic is and even how to infuse some of those styles together, it is going to feel incredibly overwhelming. Even the idea of starting is going to feel like you want to stop because you don't know how to make it go together. You don't know how to make it cohesive. You don't know how to make one room blend seamlessly into another. And the thought of that is really overwhelming. So starting with a plan and that plan is identifying what your aesthetic is. And once you know what your aesthetic is girls, then you're going to be able to walk into any store and be able to immediately hone in on what it is that will look great in your space. Okay? Trust me.
All right. The other one is, you know what? I don't own my home. Another limiting belief. I, I don't own my home. And if I don't own my home, I'm renting. And I have so many limitations that the landlord is putting on me. I can't paint the walls. I can't put too many holes in the walls. I can't, whatever your I can't is, let me remind you this...if you are a renter and your walls are neutral, and those neutrals are like light whites and light grays - sister, you are in the best spot yet. I promise you. One thing I hear over and over is I love color. I love color, love, love, love, color, but I have white walls or I have neutral walls. And if you are a renter and you love color, this is the best place to be because you can bring in color in so many other ways that when you bring in color and pattern and texture, you're going to add layer in depth and all of the wonderful things that are going to then kind of negate the white walls. You're going to need those white walls to help your eyes rest from all of the color that you bring in other places. So now, if you can't hang a lot of artwork, I understand that, but there are ways around that. But decorating a rental home is absolutely within reach. There are things that you can do to your own furniture. If you can't paint the walls, can you paint your furniture? Sure. Why not? Who's stopping you there. If you can't have lots of art hanging on the walls, can you bring in an etagere that allows you to put artwork on display? Yes. Yes, you can. So thinking creatively about the space you have in the limitations you have can be a good thing. Sometimes those boundaries help you design a little bit more efficiently.
Another common thing I hear is I know what I like, but when I get it home it just doesn't look quite right. So then I stopped buying anything. This actually goes back to what I was talking about earlier with it being overwhelming. And a lot of things will tie right back into this. So you're going to hear me on auto repeat, and then you're going to want to stick around because in July we're doing mini series on, But Where Do I Start? That's literally what the mini series is called, but this limiting belief of I buy the stuff I like, but when I get it home it just doesn't look right. It all goes back to knowing your aesthetic. Once you understand what your aesthetic is, those things that you buy, you might be able to appreciate those things, but they might not be right for your home. You might be able to appreciate it - like you appreciate that boho pendant lamp, but it might not be your a aesthetic. And so you shouldn't bring it home. When you guys understand what your aesthetic is and you know it so well, you can recite it in your sleep you're going to then save money. You're going to be able to shop the house. Have you heard that term, shop the house where you borrow items from one room and you carry them over and you redecorate the other room? That's what you'll be able to do once you understand what your aesthetic is. Maybe those items that you've bought that just don't look right? Maybe it is in the technicalities, the way it's hung, the way it's displayed, the way it drapes, whatever that is. Maybe the color is off just a little bit. And we are going to be diving into all of that. I mentioned earlier that I don't talk about rules, but I do talk about guidelines and some of those guidelines, once you start understanding those that is going to help you with these fine details of making it look right - or as a friend and client said, I want my home to not look stupid. Ha!
Another limiting belief I hear is that I don't have enough time. I am busy. Did you hear me? I am busy. Okay. Yes, we are all busy, but I also know that you make time for what's important to you. And if home design is not important to you, okay, awesome. It doesn't need to be, but if it is, you're going to make space and time for it. One thing I want to remind you is what we talked about earlier, when it feels so overwhelming, you know that phrase - how do you eat an elephant? You take one bite at a time. Okay. First of all, does anyone know the origin of that phrase?
That is the weirdest thing to me. Do you know anyone who eats an elephant? I don't, but the principle applies, right? If you go into it thinking that I have to tackle the entire room this weekend or the entire house this weekend, then yeah. It's going to take too much time. It's going to be, you know, you're not going to be able to go to your kid's soccer game, or you're not going to be able to go have drinks with a girlfriend or whatever. But if you tackle it little by little, and if you have that plan and that timeline in place so that you not only are NOT spending all the money all at once, but you're spreading it out over time so that you can then appreciate the changes that are happening and really lean into those changes to inform more design, that's going to be a good balance. So managing your expectations and understanding that it doesn't have to happen today and it doesn't have to happen yesterday is a good thing. Okay. With that in mind, however, sometimes setting yourself a goal is a good thing. So for example, if you know that you are hosting, grandma's 80th birthday in five months, and you know that you want your dining room to be shipshape, having that timeline is not only motivational, but it will help you reach those goals. Right? But knowing that you can make dramatic change and time sensitive changes when you know your aesthetic and can put it all together. That's a good thing. Just don't tackle it in a weekend.
Another limiting belief I hear is, you know what? I don't want to have to change it again in 10 years. Okay. Here's the truth, trends change...well trends change often. Trends can change on a whim, right? Like every year or two, if you're focusing your design on a trendy thing, then yeah, it's going to look outdated and it's going to look old and you're gonna need to keep up with the Joneses. Right? And that's not the plan. The plan is I feel I'm on auto repeat girls..to find your aesthetic and to design into that. And when you do that, you're going to be able to change out things slowly over time or maybe seasonally...like pillows or curtains, and those things are going to have a big impact. So one thing we can realistically expect is that about every 10 years styles change, and, you know, you can see that even in like the beige of the walls, how beige transitioned in the early two thousands into grays and how grays are transitioning and whites and blacks are coming in, how you can see that transition happening. Same thing with shiplap. Shiplap had a moment and it had a very long moment, but as it's kind of phasing out into other things, do you see that that is a style changing? And so if you are thinking, I don't want to do anything now, because I'm going to have to change it in 10 years, the design you choose. Now you can choose something timeless enough that it can transform and transition when 10 years comes around or you might not even care because 10 years is here 12 years, 15 years, and you are just kind of itching for something different anyway.
Another limiting belief I hear often is that the style that you have differs significantly from the style of your partner. And so instead of acting and making compromises, you sit in inaction, or sometimes you just gravitate towards one person making all of the decisions and weighing heavier into that and kind of negating the other person. And that can be problematic too. If you think about all of the people you know who have great relationships and you might admire their relationship, I would venture to guess that compromise is at the heart, of course, with several other things, but compromise is essential in order to make them a great pair. One thing to keep in mind when you're thinking about designing with your significant other in mind, is that the thing that makes you different from them is the thing that makes you guys together special. And so if you think about that concept in home design, great things can happen. For example, if you think your husband is a little bit more, he likes man caves, we'll say he likes industrial or leather, kind of the harder, if you want to think about like masculine textures, he likes a masculine textures where you are a little bit more glam. Combining those two can make a very pretty room. So thinking about compromising in the terms of just contrast and how contrasting can be really lovely in design.
Another one I hear all the time is that my room just doesn't look like it looks on Pinterest. It just doesn't look like that picture I showed you on in the magazine. Okay. Hard truth. And you all need to listen. Are you ready? All of those pictures are highly, highly curated. In fact, here's my challenge to you. The next time you get in the mail a design magazine, maybe you get HGTV magazine or Better Homes and Gardens, and you see those family profiles, you know - super inspiring, super cute, really wonderful, and a great source of inspiration honestly. But I want you to look at the magazine spread and you'll often find is that you'll see like a peek-a-boo coffee table in one picture, and then you'll see that same peek-a-boo coffee table in maybe another room in a picture, same spread. These are highly curated. They bring in teams of people, not necessarily for Pinterest, but they bring in teams of people to take the photos and to style the photos. So even home designers who are featured in these magazines, they are bringing in teams of people in order to style the photos and to style it so that it will take a pretty picture. By the way taking a pretty picture is one strategy of home design that I'm going to teach you - how to use your camera in home design because cameras are an essential tool for that. But that is just something to keep in mind. It's not really reality. And what we don't see is real life. We don't see the baby on the floor in the other room or the nanny calling and saying, 'Hey, when can we come home?' or the dust balls that are floating around underneath the kitchen table, or, you know, whatever, we don't see those things.
So keep that perspective in mind and view those pictures in that lens.
A quick peek-a-boo into what's coming. We are going to be spending a lot of time talking about Pinterest. We are going to be talking about how you can use Pinterest as a tool instead of a trap, how you can use Pinterest to really hone your style and understand your aesthetic. We're also going to be talking about this, which I'm super excited about - how when you say I found a picture on Pinterest and I basically just put all of the things in that picture into my home and how that is actually not the best idea. That's all coming up.
Okay one other limiting belief that I hear over and over, and this is the last one, and this is what I was saying is the most sad one. And I laughed about it, but it's just not funny to me. This should be one of the first things you're thinking about. If you share your space with your kids, this limiting belief should never come into your mind. And this limiting belief is that I have kids and the kids are messy. Okay. I want you to stop and think about that for a second. Your kids..I'm getting, I'm getting a little teary about this. If you share your space with your kids, first of all, what an honor, that is. What an honor. You are living a legacy with them. You, as their mom, are breathing life into the little people that they are and who are they're becoming. And I can say that now, because I'm out of the trenches. I'm out of those hard days where I lost sleep every night, I'm out of those days where I was changing diaper after diaper and out of those days where kids were really trying their hardest to understand the boundaries and pushing back against them. I'm out of those days. And I do remember my sister saying at one point it gets easier and it does. So if you are my mom of little ones right now, and I'll get right back to my point - where I'm going, if you are a mom and you are in the trenches, the trenches that feel so long and hard. They totally do. I'm with you. I hear you. I see you. I know that you're going to get to the other side. Keep your chin up, hug your babies and pray for them. And in 10 years you are going to wish for those days. Okay? I'm a little emotional about that. And I'm not entirely sure why, but your kids, you guys, are part of your story. That's the thing your kids are. They're an important part of your story. And if you think that your home, if you think about your home being a canvas for storytelling, then they need to be present.
It doesn't mean that they need to choose pink walls with purple stripes. It doesn't. It doesn't mean that. It doesn't mean that you need to let them have control of your downstairs because you're going to let them have all their toys splattered all over. That's not home design. That's something different. It doesn't mean that they get to go to the store and pick your pillows. That's not what that means. Can you get them involved? Yes, absolutely. Can you have them help you if you're choosing between, you already have your plan, you already know your aesthetic, you already know that you are wanting we'll say a certain pillow and you have choices and you like option one and you like to option two. Can you let them choose option between option one and option two to let them feel like they are part of the decision-making? Yes. Yes. Have you ever heard of the phrase there's pride and ownership? There is. Think about when you owned your first car, think about when you owned your first house and you kind of that, oh, I don't want even to scratch it. I don't want them to ruin the floor or whatever. Pride in ownership is a real thing. And when your kiddos are able to have a little bit of ownership in the process, there's some pride there. Allowing them to help you carry the hammer so that you can hang your picture, allowing them to paint the base layer on your wall, but you're right there to do the fine tuning, allowing them to be a part of the process - they take notice. They all take notice.
Recently, I changed something in our home. The kiddos went away for a weekend with Greg.
We'd been a year plus into the pandemic and they went away and mom needed a break. So I got a break. And while they were taking their little break, I decided it was time to refresh my living room. It wasn't huge. It was a couple of pillows. It was a new lamp. And I happened to the, they knew I was getting this, but I had a new like credenza thing. And I was putting it together. Nothing fancy. It's just for my Ikea, but I was putting it together. All of this happened when I had time, while they were gone. And when they came back, you know, I always wonder, like how long is it going to take Greg to notice? There's been some funny stories, but he notices, but the kids - Henry in particular, stopped in his tracks, looked around and then gave me a big hug. And he said, "Mom, I love it. It looks so good.' You guys, they notice, they notice.
All right, ladies, again, if you feel like any of those things resonated with you, if you feel like you are stuck in inaction because of one of those limiting beliefs, I want to encourage you to understand that yes, they might be limiting beliefs. And I want you to ask yourself a few more questions. I want you to ask yourself what really is keeping you stuck? What is it? Is there something you can do about it? Do you know that you're stuck, but you just don't know why? Call me. We need to chat. Go on to figand firstname.lastname@example.org. Click on my tab, 'work with me' and let's book a call and I can help you walk through that. All right, gals until next time. I'll see you soon.
Hey, real quick. Before you go, if you learned something new or found value in today's podcast, would you head over to iTunes, to fig and farm at home and leave a review and subscribe to the show? That would be awesome. And if you'd like to connect with my community of mamas who are learning to be intentional storytellers within their own homes, join us at bit dot L Y forward slash design one-on-one group. There's always more room at the table. See you soon.