5 Ways To Honor Your Home For More Thoughtful Living

You might think that a house is just four walls and a roof. And you're right, sort of. A home is so much more than that. Instead of thinking of your residence as an inanimate object devoid of life, try to imagine that it actually has an energy or life force. The belief that everything shares a universal life force or energy is one of the main foundations in Shinto and Buddhist practices, per Britannica. There's no harm in thinking this way about your home. After all, it is your personal space, dwelling, and haven. So why not treat it with a bit of reverence and humility? 

Talking to your house can also be a form of energetic cleansing. You're not expected to sit there and have a deep heart-to-heart or a one-on-one therapy session, but simply acknowledging your home's presence and thanking it for being there and protecting you can send out positive waves of good intentions. Just as you would show appreciation to a friend, family member, or even the guy at the grocery store who helped you with your cart, your house deserves that kind of recognition, too. Lucky for you, we've found five of the easiest ways to start immediately honoring your home, and in time, you might also find that practicing the following might positively impact your views and ways of thinking.

1. Talk to your house

This may sound silly, but talking to your house is a great way to show that you have a deep love and respect for it. Marie Kondo has different ways of "communicating" with her home daily. She wrote on Twitter that when she returns home from a long day at work, the first thing she does after unlocking the door is to say, "I'm home!" to her house. It's also important to honor and thank other people's homes when you visit. This Shinto-influenced practice can be applied to your dwelling, as well. First, find the center of the house and kneel on the floor, mentally introduce yourself and briefly explain who you are and what your purpose is, then thank the home for protecting the family living there and allowing you to enter, per Marie Kondo.

When it comes to talking to your home, there are so many things to be thankful for. You can thank your abode for protecting you and your loved ones, for keeping you warm, and for providing a safe space for communal gatherings, to name a few, per Trusted Veterans Restoration. When you wake up in the morning, greet your house. When you go to sleep, tell it goodnight. Show your house appreciation, and you'll begin feeling the energy shift around you.

2. Remove your shoes

Removing your shoes before entering your dwelling is one of those topics that seems to have supporters on either side. Of course, you don't want to track in dirt, germs, and other nasty things all over your house. Live Science writes that it's not uncommon for the bottom of your shoes to look like a bacteria rager. But some people might have foot issues, where even putting on shoes causes great discomfort. 

In some cultures, you have inside shoes and outside shoes, while in other practices, like the art of feng shui, note that leaving your shoes by the door (inside or outside) is not a good move for inviting in good chi. It's typical in Asian cultures to leave your shoes outside, via Shoes Off because it's a sign of respect to the homeowners and, presumably, their home, too. Whatever your reason, it's still important to consider what your house would like you to do with your shoes. After all, it covers and protects you from the outside elements. So it seems like a simple and kind gesture to not track grime all over the place (whether you see it or not).

3. Take a second to notice the small things

Our attention is constantly being pulled in different directions, both inside and outside our homes. And our minds are in an eternal state of over-stimulation, so much so that we fail to notice the fantastic miracles happening around us. Per American Nurse Journal, stopping what you're doing and focusing on your surroundings is a mindful practice. The goal of mindfulness is to bring awareness to the present moment, which allows you to experience that time without any external thoughts or judgments. This removes any stress, anxiety, or negative feelings you might be experiencing. 

The mindful mental state often goes hand-in-hand with practicing the art of being grateful, per PsychCentral. So, what can you focus on in your home to help grow your new mindful mentality? Perhaps the way the sunlight filters through a window at a particular time of day or the curvature of the branches on the tree outside your window may look like two people dancing. It's incredible how much beauty you'll see once you stop and observe.

4. Embrace and honor its quirks

Maybe the doorknobs don't match, or perhaps you failed to realize that your kitchen cabinets are all crooked. Whatever the reason, as long as it's not posing a hazard to you or other household members, these little imperfections add character to your dwelling. They also make your home feel like, well, a home. Because let's face it. Not everyone wants to live in a sterile mansion or a house that feels more like an art museum. Part of appreciating your home is honoring and accepting those imperfections. 

The Japanese call embracing both internal and external imperfections wabi-sabi, per Oshiya. This philosophy has been around since the 15th century and encourages individuals to honor your true, authentic self, as well as the people and things you surround yourself with. One of the seven principles of Wabi-sabi is called fukinsei, which translates to asymmetry. So next time you find yourself upset about that one kitchen cabinet door that refuses to stay closed, take a step back and honor it instead.

5. Take care of your house

It goes without saying that one of the best things you can do for your house is to take care of it. This means providing routine maintenance and upkeep, like checking the plumbing, taking care of the yard, patching cracks when you see them, and not letting your house fall into shambles.

Of course, this can sometimes cost a bit of money. But if you're living in a house, condo, apartment, or even a cabin, tiny home, conversion van, or yurt, you need to take pride in where you're at. It's also important to routinely cleanse your house, per Mind Body Green. We're not talking about picking up after yourself, either (though that's an integral part of being an adult). The practice of cleaning can be as simple as burning sage or herbs, lighting incense, meditating and using visualization, strategically placing crystals or gemstones around your dwelling, clearing clutter, or even just setting a new intention for your home.