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How to Make a Small Apartment Guest Friendly

How to Make a Small Apartment Guest Friendly

I love the holiday season. Getting together, warm evenings in the home snuggling with your loved one with a glass of hot beverage, and family. Nothing else unites us as holidays do.

When you live in a small apartment, one of the biggest challenges is to make room for visitors and to ensure their comfortable stay at your place. When your loved ones are going to be coming to visit you (it is holiday season after all), you will need to get savvy with storage and especially with sleeping options. At first, you may think that your tiny apartment won’t be able to accommodate guests, but think again!

There are a variety of small ways to make sure your guests feel like they’re home, even though you don’t have that much space to share. Hosting guests in a small apartment can be fun and exciting, however, making them feel comfy when sharing your home requires certain preparations. Here are a few tips for hosting your guests and avoiding the troubles of a small apartment or a studio.

Clean and reorganize your space

organisation
    Image Credit: Emily May, Flickr

    Given the limited space, it is expected of you to maximize and put every inch of it in practical use. Regardless of how your apartment looks and how you live, it is best to clean and reorganize your apartment prior to the guest’s arrival.

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    If bedding is not clean or has not been used in a while, make sure you wash them along with the extra blankets and pillows before guests use them. Those should be easily reachable if needed.

    Pay attention to any type of miscellaneous repairs that you have been delaying for some time and take care of it before it’s too late–clean the carpets, unclog drains and fix small holes and scratches in the walls. It is that big excuse you’ve been waiting for to do, so make the best use of it.

    It is also important that your space is free of clutter just in time for the gathering. All the unnecessary pieces and items should be kept inside storage bins and cabinets, and all the needed essentials in the bathroom should be organized with enough space for guest’s cosmetics to be placed. Don’t forget the fresh towels in the bathroom to make your guests feel like they’ve always had their special place in your home. It’s the details that count.

    Make sure there is enough space in your closet for their wardrobe, shoes, other luggage, bags and suitcases to put away for the time they are spending at your place. If you want to go even further, you could acquire a foldable suitcase stand to give them a place to put their stuff in a more organized way. Preparing an extra chair is also a smart idea; even if you do not have a spare one, there are options such as extra stools, ottomans, and even floor pillows should be useful and comfy enough for your guest’s convenience.

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    Sleeping and eating

    sleeping and eating
      Image Credit: Denis Labrecque, Flickr

      Every owner of a small apartment knows the basic rule: to make the apartment functional, use every part of it. Because of this, you will very rarely find unnecessary furniture in studio apartments. As much as this solution is practical, a problem arises when one of the guests wants to spend the night or when a greater number of people are found in the apartment at the same time.

      Are you familiar with the sentence: “Mi casa es su casa”? Inviting as it may sound, uttering these words could amount to a problem when your guest has no place to sleep. If you live in a studio apartment or you don’t have an extra bed, you can’t expect the guest to sleep on the floor or in an armchair. Also, it is seldom convenient to share a bed with your guest. Fortunately, there is a solution on how to avoid this unpleasant situation.

      Air mattresses are used specifically for such occasions. They are produced in different dimensions, so before you buy one, be sure to measure the area in which you want to put it and select the appropriate model. Depending on your needs, you can choose a mattress for one or two persons. Mattresses are practical because they take up little space (comes in a shoe-sized box) and internal or external pumps do all the work. You just have to decide whether you’re going to sleep on it or your guests.

      If you live alone or namely with one person, you don’t require an old-fashioned dining room table. However, when you have multiple guests, there is a problem because there are either not enough chairs or the table isn’t large enough. To avoid awkward situations, I wholeheartedly recommend buying bed/lap trays. They are more useful than you’d think and you will be able to sit together on the couch on which will surely be a place for everybody to enjoy a meal.

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      Guests first

      guestsfirst
        Image Credit: Jessica Fiess-Hill, Flickr

        To make their stay as convenient as it can be, make small concessions for your guests in order to show your hospitality.

        If you have a dog or cat, ask your parents or friends to stay with them while you have guests. Not only might guests be allergic to the hair or afraid of dogs, but imagine your small apartment full of people and your dog chasing her favorite toy or a cat occupying his favorite chair. Also, dogs require everyday walks. This can be inconvenient because you can’t leave the guests waiting. If you invite your guests to join you in walks, have in mind that not everybody is enthusiastic about the idea of standing next to your loved pet waiting for it to finish its physiological needs.

        Even though it might seem unusual, it is actually smart to create a timetable for the bathroom. You will avoid forming lines in front of the bathroom and you can keep any daily routines you might have. This, of course, refers to bathing, showering, brushing teeth, and all those things you do before going to bed. Agree to use the bathroom in the morning or evening, depending on your guest’s wishes.

        Be sure to follow the habits of your guests no matter how unusual they seem or how hard you can cope with them. If guests prefer to nap in the afternoon, use that time to complete any tasks you might have downtown (returning books to the library or paying the bills). If guests want to go to bed earlier than you’re used to, watch a movie on the laptop (remember your headphones) or read a book with a book light.

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        Simply be a true host all the way: turn off the lights that might bother them, mute the TV and be as quiet as you can so you don’t wake them up.

        It is all about the small things

        guests
          Image Credit: Wonderlane, Flickr

          Overnight guests are always a challenge whether you live in a small apartment, studio or a loft but that doesn’t mean it is time to panic. At first, all this may seem intimidating, but eventually you will realize that you are more than capable of transitioning your small home into a guest-friendly environment with just a bit of rearranging and organization.

          Ultimately, it all comes down to small things, and it is all about opening up your home, making your guests feel welcome and comfortable no matter how big or small your place is. Not only will your visitors appreciate your thoughtfulness, but the preparations you made will also reduce your unnecessary stress during the visit.

          So, don’t worry and let yourself enjoy that precious time when you get to share your home with others, and you will be more than glad you did it. See you at your place!

          Featured photo credit: Taras Kalapun via flickr.com

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          Dejan Kvrgic

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          Last Updated on September 10, 2019

          7 Morning Rituals to Empower Your Day And Change Your Life

          7 Morning Rituals to Empower Your Day And Change Your Life

          Most of your reality is not a given. It is shaped by your expectations, beliefs and thoughts you have formed about it. A big chunk of these beliefs and expectations are encoded into habits you integrate in your daily life.

          Yes, some of these habits are formed unconsciously and can be counter-productive or limiting but conversely, you can consciously form positive habits that will transform and empower your life significantly.

          This is a powerful point of departure that more and more people are becoming aware of. The most common trait of highly successful people is the recognition of the power they have in co-creating their reality through changing the way they think, believe or expect their reality to be.

          One of the most effective ways of changing our belief patterns is through practising and maintaining daily rituals. Ancient traditions had clearly understood the power of rituals in reinforcing habits and changing the way we see and create our reality a long, long time ago.

          Once again, if you look into the life history of any highly successful individual, you will find some form of ritual in their daily routine. Some of these rituals may seem banal or eccentric but don’t be deceived by appearances. Rituals are one of the most effective self-empowering tools freely available at the practitioner’s disposal – that is, you!

          Below are some the easiest yet life-changing morning rituals you can do every day. Of course, you can have your own afternoon or bed-time rituals but morning rituals are extremely effective in empowering your day since they help you charge yourself before it all starts.

          1. Gratitude

          Feeling gratitude and appreciation for those little signs and moments of joy happening in your life is probably one of the most overlooked or underestimated rituals. It is a perfect morning ritual to start your day on a very positive key.

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          The real power of gratitude is that it makes you pick out and focus on what is working in your life – what is in tune with your being as a whole. It is selectively positive. It reinforces happiness and positivity by shedding light on those awesome things, small or big, that grace your everyday living.

          Quite often, we just pick out the pain points, the problems, the bottle necks, whatever it is that is not working in our life and causing friction, anxiety and unhappiness. This is like constantly rewriting the script of your life with a negative or tragic overtone. Your subconscious mind follows faithfully that script you write whether it is a negative or positive one.

          So feeling gratitude is undoubtedly an immensely empowering ritual. Start your day by being thankful for those positive things that happened the previous day or throughout the week. It could be something really petty and small. It doesn’t matter. You might be grateful for an unexpected visit from an old friend, a beautiful encounter with a kind stranger, a new opportunity or whatever it is that shines your way. Do it every morning and see what happens during the day.

          Gratitude-Quotes

            2. Writing Down Your Most Important Tasks

            This is a very practical ritual. Start your day by identifying and writing down from one to three of the most important tasks you need to complete during that day. These tasks are ones which support important long term goals that are aligned to your purpose, passion or general direction in life.

            For example, if writing a book or building an online community are important long term goals which are aligned to your personal growth, then an important task for the day might be finishing off a particular page or two of the book or coming up with fresh content ideas for the online community.

            What is important with this ritual is that you identify these tasks and complete them as early in the day as possible. Of course, you will have other tasks apart from the ones you will write down but, these are tasks which can be tackled later or batched up and carried out in one go.

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            Writing down your most important tasks in the morning helps you focus your day and life according to what is essential. It helps you prioritize and manage your time better. As a result, you simplify your life by applying your focus and energy on what really counts for your overall life progress.

            3. Affirm Your Goals in Writing or Drawing

            This is similar to the previous idea but different in its application and purpose. Writing down your most important tasks of the day is a way to have a concrete structure of action to follow. Affirming your goals, on the other hand, is a very powerful way of crystallizing your vision and goals in life into your everyday mental space.

            Writing down or doodling your goals on a piece of paper helps you externalize those goals by giving them form. In return, they are reflected back in your subconscious mind and thus, reinforcing them and integrating them more wholly.

            An example of this would be writing down “I am achieving greater success in my career” or “I am becoming healthier and stronger through my exercise.” Notice the present tense being used as a way to tell yourself you are in the process already. Remember the life script we subconsciously follow? You are basically modifying the script to be applied now in the present.

            Drawing or doodling can be equally, or even more, effective  (if you are more of a visual person) as it summarizes a graphical representation of your goals. For example, if your goal is to build a new house or live in another country, you can draw the house or draw things that symbolise the country you want to live in.

            write down goals

              4. Practice Qi Gong Exercises

              According to Chinese philosophy, Qi (pronounced ‘Chee’) means the life force or energy inherent in all things;[1] and Qi Gong is the practice to cultivate and circulate that energy in your body. This may sound esoteric or complicated but actually, Qi Gong is really a set of simple exercises aimed at increasing your health and vitality.

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              There are numerous forms and practices available for free through the online media. As a morning ritual, I recommend following these simple exercises by Qi Gong master Lee Holden:

              5. Drink Hot Water with Lemon

              Simply add a slice of lemon in a glass of hot water and drink one every morning. This is a very simple ritual I follow faithfully every morning.

              Apart from being a good source of vitamin C and a great way of flushing out toxins in the morning, it balances and maintains the PH levels in the body, reduces pain and inflammation in joints and knees and helps nourishing brain and nerve cells. Here are some more benefits of drinking hot water with lemon.

              6. Rise Earlier

              The practical advantages of waking up early are obvious.

              For example, you gain more time for doing exercise such as walking, cycling or Qi Gong as suggested above. You gain more time to be with yourself to reflect, meditate or, more importantly, carry out the other morning rituals.

              So rising early can be seen as a foundation for all the other morning rituals. Many, like myself, find that they are more productive in the early hours of the day.

              Also, various studies have shown that there are many other benefits from waking up an hour or two earlier in the morning. Sleeping early and waking up early helps the body attune with the earth’s circadian rhythms thus, promoting more restorative sleep. Other curious results from such studies show, for instance, that early risers tend to be more optimistic and can anticipate and solve problems more efficiently than the norm.[2]

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              7. Listen to Uplifting Music

              Uplifting music can have a direct impact on our mood, especially in the morning. It charges us emotionally and tunes us into a more positive outlook of the day ahead.

              Most people wake up to music or listen to music as they commute to work. Very often, however, they tune in to a radio or randomly pick a playlist from their device. Being more selective and conscious of the music you listen to in the morning can have a great impact on your day and life in general.

              It’s funny how we try to choose music according to our mood. For example if you are feeling down or disappointed by something, you are more prone to listen to music that reflects that mood – for instance blues, sad songs or downtempo music. This has the effect of reinforcing that mood. What you need to do is the exact opposite and retune your mood by listening to music that beats to a different tune than that mood.

              Try to listen to more uplifting music in the morning even if, or especially if, your mood does not dictate so.

              More About Energetic Habits & Rituals

              Featured photo credit: Carli Jeen via unsplash.com

              Reference

              [1] Live Science: What Is Qi Gong
              [2] Harvard Business Review: Defend Your Research: The Early Bird Really Does Get the Worm

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