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Five Ways to Make Your Apartment Feel Like Home

Five Ways to Make Your Apartment Feel Like Home

Moving into your first apartment after college is a big change. It’s not uncommon to feel the pressure of dressing up your spot to make it look more “grown up.” However, it’s good to keep in mind that there are just five simple pieces that are necessary to create a sophisticated-but-relaxed, perfectly homey space.

With the addition of a great area rug, a headboard and a few other essentials, you can make your new apartment feel cozy in no time. Here are five ways that you can make your apartment feel like a home without breaking the bank.

1. Art is Essential

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    A big, blank wall is a rookie mistake that makes your apartment feel cold and impersonal. Art displayed on the walls of your new abode can make a huge difference in the look and feel of your new home away from home. Curating a small gallery wall or selecting a few pieces of art that speak to your style can be a great way to spruce up your space without breaking the budget. Look for pieces that come in series if you don’t have enough time to hunt for art on your own, or ask around for spare prints and curate an eccentric and unique collection.

    2. Don’t Underestimate The Power of an Area Rug

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      No matter what type of floor your apartment comes with, an area rug can address several needs at once. First, it warms up your space—literally. If your apartment comes equipped with hardwood flooring, area rugs add visual warmth as well as soft support underfoot. Next, an area rug pulls any room together. Place it neatly underneath a coffee table to anchor your living room, wedge it underneath a dining table for a proper sitting area, or tuck it underneath your bed for a warm place to land after a full night’s sleep. For more inspiration on which type of area rug to choose, you can check out this rugs guide from The Home Depot.

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      3. Say it with Shelving

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        Instead of stacking your old textbooks against the wall, invest in a bookcase or floating wall shelves to store your favorite books, accessories and decorations. Doing this will not only give your treasured items a neat new home but at the same time it can relieve the cluttered look as well as add an element of style to the apartment. To mask things like stacks of papers or clutter, opt for baskets within the shelving units for a design-centric storage center. Balance books with baubles to create a fashionable vignette that is both functional and stylish.

        4. Hello Headboard

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          Most likely, your dorm room didn’t have the space for a plush, sophisticated headboard. Luckily, your new apartment very well might! A small amount of Internet research could work wonders in making it possible to enhance the look of the bedroom. Browse the web for headboards that match your personal style and budget, and then watch your bedroom magically fall into place. A headboard is like an area rug for your room: you don’t realize you need one until you have one!

          5. Play Up Patterns

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            When putting the finishing touches on your place, remember that you can treat yourself to a bit of fun with colors and patterns. Incorporate throws, pillows, and accessories with color throughout your space tastefully and sparingly. A colorful dish here, a patterned throw there and voila—your apartment transformation is complete!

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            To see more ideas for area rugs and other home decor, you can visit Home Depot online. What are some of your go-to ways to create a homey first apartment? Feel free to leave a comment and let us know.

            Featured photo credit: http://www.morguefile.com via mrg.bz

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            Kerrie Kelly

            Interior designer

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            Last Updated on November 5, 2020

            How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

            How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

            Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

            You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. A rut can manifest as a productivity vacuum and be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. Is it possible to learn how to get out of a rut?

            Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, or a student, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

            1. Work on Small Tasks

            When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks that have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

            Whenever I finish doing that, I generate positive momentum, which I bring forward to my work.

            If you have a large long-term goal you can’t wait to get started on, break it down into smaller objectives first. This will help each piece feel manageable and help you feel like you’re moving closer to your goal.

            You can learn more about goals vs objectives here.

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            2. Take a Break From Your Work Desk

            When you want to learn how to get out of a rut, get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the bathroom, walk around the office, or go out and get a snack. According to research, your productivity is best when you work for 50 minutes to an hour and then take a 15-20 minute break[1].

            Your mind may be too bogged down and will need some airing. By walking away from your computer, you may create extra space for new ideas that were hiding behind high stress levels.

            3. Upgrade Yourself

            Take the down time to upgrade your knowledge and skills. Go to a seminar, read up on a subject of interest, or start learning a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

            The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college[2]. How’s that for inspiration?

            4. Talk to a Friend

            Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while. Relying on a support system is a great way to work on self-care when you’re learning how to get out of a rut.

            Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

            5. Forget About Trying to Be Perfect

            If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies. Perfectionism can lead you to fear failure, which can ultimate hinder you even more if you’re trying to find motivation to work on something new.

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            If you allow your perfectionism to fade, soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come, and then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

            Learn more about How Not to Let Perfectionism Secretly Screw You Up.

            6. Paint a Vision to Work Towards

            If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

            Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the ultimate goal or vision you have for your life?

            Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action. You can use the power of visualization or even create a vision board if you like to have something to physically remind you of your goals.

            7. Read a Book (or Blog)

            The things we read are like food for our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great material.

            Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. You can also stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs and follow writers who inspire and motivate you. Find something that interests you and start reading.

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            8. Have a Quick Nap

            If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep[3].

            Try a nap if you want to get out of a rut

              One Harvard study found that “whether they took long naps or short naps, participants showed significant improvement on three of the four tests in the study’s cognitive-assessment battery”[4].

              9. Remember Why You Are Doing This

              Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

              What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall your inspiration, and perhaps even journal about it to make it feel more tangible.

              10. Find Some Competition

              When we are learning how to get out of a rut, there’s nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

              Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, and networking conventions can all inspire you to get a move on. However, don’t let this throw you back into your perfectionist tendencies or low self-esteem.

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              11. Go Exercise

              Since you are not making headway at work, you might as well spend the time getting into shape and increasing dopamine levels. Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, or whatever type of exercise helps you start to feel better.

              As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

              If you need ideas for a quick workout, check out the video below:

              12. Take a Few Vacation Days

              If you are stuck in a rut, it’s usually a sign that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

              Beyond the quick tips above, arrange one or two days to take off from work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax, do your favorite activities, and spend time with family members. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

              Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest.

              More Tips to Help You Get out of a Rut

              Featured photo credit: Ashkan Forouzani via unsplash.com

              Reference

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