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Seven Ways to Upgrade Your Living Room for Less

Seven Ways to Upgrade Your Living Room for Less

You may have been planning on upgrading your living room for months. Unfortunately, bills often keep adding up, so it’s difficult to do what you want on a tight budget. Fortunately, there are a lot of ways to improve your living room without spending a lot of money.

Here are some frugal ways to improve your living room.

1. Add a few floating shelves.

When you are designing your new living room, try to find ways to make it more convenient for you and your family. Adding some floating shelves is a great way to save time bending over and minimize stress on your back and joints.

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You can find floating shelves at Home Depot, Pottery Barn, WayFair, Target, and many other online stores. You can buy them for as little as $29.99.

2. Put up a couple of chalkboards.

It doesn’t take much time or money to put up a few chalkboards in your living room. They can also add a little décor and entertainment. Many people enjoy doodling with their friends and children. You can also use them to play a couple games of Pictionary or share quick messages (like reminding your kids to take out the trash when they get home from school).

Price range varies considerably, so it’s important to shop around. If you buy an Uttermost Cafe de la Tour chalkboard with a matching clock from ClockWay, then you will need to pay $151. You can also find a similar-sized chalkboard from Walmart for only $23.

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3. Buy pictures from a thrift store.

Old pictures can add a unique charm to your home. The nice thing about them is that you can usually get great deals at a thrift store. You can probably find some great pictures for $10 or less. They may not be contemporary, but there is nothing wrong with that!

4. Buy discount furniture.

Buying furniture will cost a bit more than most of the other options listed here, but it can go a long way. The trick is to buy sofas at a great discount. If you shop carefully, you can save 20% or more from the original price. Make sure to keep your eyes open for great deals.

5. Buy some colored pillows.

You probably bought matching pillows with your sofa. Do you really want them, though? Most people insist on making everything match without considering other options. The truth is that finding a different colored pillow may be a better way to go. If you have a dark blue chaise lounge sofa, you may want to buy a bright orange pillow. It will really add some character because it will stand out a lot more.

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The cost of sofa pillows also ranges quite a bit, even if you are comparing options from the same retailer. You can usually find some great deals from Kohl’s and other department stores for as little as $8.99.

6. Get some large mirrors.

Mirrors are probably the simplest addition to any living room, but they can really do wonders. They add dimension, character, and energy to the room.

You may need to shop for them used to find a decent deal. New mirrors from Pottery Barn, Kohl’s, and even Walmart tend to cost at least $100. However, you can usually buy used mirrors for $10 or less. Used mirrors will usually look older and more tinted, but they work great if you want to give your living room a more rustic touch.

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7. Make homemade lamps.

Are you having trouble finding a nice, cheap lamp? You may want to consider making your own! A couple of years ago, Camille Smith shared a couple of renovation ideas with Home and Garden Television. One of her ideas was to make a homemade lamp with materials that you can find around your home. She showed a picture of a lamp that was made out of a small globe and a couple of children’s toys.

You will need a little artistic inspiration to make a decent lamp for your living room. However, if you rack your brain you can make a unique lamp without spending a dime.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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Ryan Kh

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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