When it's not perfect...
Some days I look around my home and I get the itch to change everything. That's partly because I'm currently living in a rental house. I own my own house (a lovely old fabulous house...) but I fell in love and decided I needed a change for awhile, so I packed up and moved across the country. (I am fortunate that one of my dearest friends is renting my house, so it's in good hands.) The move is only temporary; we'll be moving back in a few years. Still, having once lived in MY house, my perfect house, the house I always dreamed of owning, nothing else quite measures up. (Those of you who have been lucky enough to find the house that was always meant to be yours will understand what I'm talking about.) So, when it comes to not being completely satisfied with your current abode, I understand.That doesn't mean, however, that I can't make the best of the situation and embrace my current home for what it is (a lovely old little bungalow near the beach), not what I'd like it to be (bigger, with a pink living room). I have tried very hard to do that, and for the most part, I think I've done pretty well. Figuring out a way to make my current home beautiful is worth the effort because it makes me feel so much better - though I am a long way from figuring out how to live with my boyfriend's hideous black leather recliner. I've tried everything and I just can't make it go away. Covering it doesn't even work. My only comfort is knowing it won't be coming with us when we move in a few years. For now, I think of it as the universe's way of trying to teach me acceptance.
If you aren't happy with what you see when you look around your home, identify the things you'd change. I'd encourage you to start fresh with a clean house, though. I've discovered that my dissatisfaction with my house lessens considerably with a good cleaning. It also seems to work wonders for my mental health.
Once you've got a clean slate, prioritize what you'd like to do. Think big if you must, but remember small changes can make a huge difference. Are you displaying a collection you've outgrown? Or are you living with an ugly lamp just because a family member gave it to you and you feel obligated? (I've done this.) Do you get an "ugh" feeling every time your eye lands on it? Sell it, donate it or pack it away - it's only bringing you down. Hate your furniture or just want a new look? Try a thrift store for a new piece or slipcovers - it's amazing what you can do for very little money. Ugly wood furniture can get a whole new life with a coat of paint. And those walls? Spend $20 and paint them a color that makes you smile every time you walk in the room. (Seriously, do not underestimate how happy this can make you.) If you're renting, you can always paint over it before you move.
Being surrounded by beauty begets peacefulness. And trying to work with my current home, instead of against it, seems to impart a positive energy. There's nothing more frustrating than trying to beat a house into submission and it just won't budge. Your environment has a direct effect on your mood and well-being, so it's worth it to make the most of it.