Creating A Healthy Sanctuary

Ahhh, the sanctuary bedroom. The ultimate source for a homeowner’s rest, relaxation, and restoration. It is a space that affords you the freedom to curl up with a good book, talk privately on the phone, re-energize, speak intimately, or enjoy special time with a loved one. Despite these activities, this bedroom is often left undecorated, overlooked, over-populated, and cluttered…thus, distracting from healthy living.

Relaxing colors, plush linens, and fluffy pillows all contribute subtly to create an atmosphere of welcoming retreat. Color is central to our emotions we feel when entering a room. When combined with the overall effect of a room, color can have a magnificent or devastating effect. It can affect a person’s emotions, energy level, and sense of order (or disorder). Color also sets a tone in a home; for example, formal vs informal; masculine vs feminine; cold and stuffy vs warm and welcoming.

When assessing your sanctuary, keep the following five steps in mind:


What is the purpose of your space? Form follows function, so this room needs to work within the constraints of your needs and preferences. Obviously, the master bedroom’s primary purpose is for sleeping, but you may be surprised at all the elements that need for that purpose.


How is the space shaped and what should the focal point be? The elements of the space must be in harmony with the architectural style of the room. There is a focal point for each room of a home. In one’s bedroom, it is usually the bed.


Where should we put the large pieces in the room to create balance, flow, proportion, and scale? The room should be balanced from every angle and visual weight taken into consideration. It should have managed and functional traffic flow, uninterrupted from the entry to the adjoining bathroom. Furnishing choices are to be in proportion to the room and to scale with one another.


Where should we put the smaller pieces in the room to create rhythm, repetition, style, and good lines? Repetition and rhythm can be created using pairs of objects, colors, shapes, style, and textures.


Most rooms need plenty of lighting. In the master bedroom, provide practical bedside lighting. Also ask yourself: is the room organized, clean, and well repaired? Does it have good air circulation? Baths should be sparkling clean and in good order, as well. For homeowners, this is an obligation we owe to ourselves in order to relieve the stress, chaos, stuffiness, and nagging mental “to do” list in our bedroom.

Setting boundaries and teaching children to respect your relationship are good examples for everyone in the family. Remove toys, kids’ photos, desks, work resources, animal beds, etc. from the master bedroom. Why no kid photos? Photos of our children do not help to promote intimacy and romance in the bedroom.

This is not to say that children are not allowed in your private sanctuary! Some of our family’s favorite moments are snuggling together in bed discussing what we want to do that day! Share your sanctuary with your children on your terms, while teaching them to respect your relationship and space. And, set goals to declutter and organize your bedroom to create the sanctuary you deserve. It is important to get rid of items you dislike, no longer use, are worn out or outdated. Ask yourself three qualifying questions: Do you love it? Does it fit your lifestyle? Have you used it within the last year?

Creating a sanctuary that is healthy is not easy, but is so rewarding in many ways. It is a gift!

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