How To Love Your Imperfect Home

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Use these five practical tips to help you love and accept your imperfect home. Includes ways to combat comparison, and be happy with what you’ve got!

summer flowers in large vintage blue ball jar

I know I promised you this post quite a while back, but it has taken me some time to gather my thoughts. I wrote a post similar to this several years ago, but I have a different perspective now since we left our family home and downsized to something smaller. Loving your imperfect home may seem impossible at times, but I want to assure you, it’s not. Read on for some tips to make it easier.

summer flowers in mason jar how to love your imperfect home 2

1.) Stop Drowning in the Sea of Comparison

Believe me, I’ve been treading water in the Sea of Comparison my whole life. So far, I’ve been able to avoid actually drowning! Nothing can mess with your mental health or self-esteem more than comparing what you have to what others have. Here is a quote by Angel Chernoff that puts it all in perspective: “If the grass looks greener on the other side…stop staring. Stop comparing. Stop complaining. Start watering the grass you’re standing on.”

neutral chairs with pillows how to love your imperfect home

Social media doesn’t help with this issue. All you have to do is scroll through Instagram and you will find the most incredible homes, and they all appear to be perfect. I’m here to tell you that they’re not! Nothing is perfect, and when social media leads us astray, we have to pull back and think logically. Just close those apps, and move on.

summer flowers in mason jars in living room

It all boils down to this…someone is ALWAYS going to have a “better” home than you. There is always going to be someone with a bigger garage, or newer windows, or that awesome kitchen island you’ve always wanted. Put what everyone else has out of your mind…and concentrate on your own home. I think of it as putting on blinders. I’m not always successful, but when I am, I feel more at peace, and much happier.

summer flowers in mason jars beside lamp how to love your imperfect home

2.) Don’t Dwell on What’s Wrong

In other words, consider the glass half full, instead of half empty. Our situation has changed since we moved, but when we lived on Sutton Place, this was a hard thing for me to do. There were so many things that needed fixed, or updated, that it was a challenge to see past them. I always did though, and now that we live in a newer house, I am so incredibly grateful that my life is easier. Even now, there are things about our home that don’t exactly fit our style, or that I would like to change. I don’t dwell on them though, and I focus on all the things about this house that I love.

summer flowers in liberty blue pitcher on cooktop

3.) Consider Your Season Of Life

No matter where you live, or what phase of life you are in, it’s so important to embrace the here and now. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t plan for the future, but we should definitely try our hardest to be happy with what we have. If you live in a fixer-upper, make it the best it can be. If you want to move to a bigger home, don’t put off making the home you have as wonderful as possible. Likewise, if you want to downsize, make it a point to enjoy the years you have left in your family home. Thinking ahead is smart, and it’s those dreams that get us through the day. But don’t let those dreams get in the way of enjoying the home you are in right now.

summer flowers in liberty blue pitcher

4.) Make a Practical List

Letting go of the imperfection will help immensely, but that doesn’t mean that improvements can’t be made. I encourage you to make a list of things about your house that bother you…but remember to be practical and sensible. Think about what you can actually accomplish, and take into consideration the time involved and the budget. Don’t make a “wish list.” The sky is definitely not the limit, so make sure your list is attainable. The last thing you want to do is set yourself up for failure…no one needs that! Also, remember that this isn’t a race, and that there’s no finish line. Take your time, and enjoy the process.

black and silver miniature schnauzer on sutton place blog
Millie…my little sidekick!

5.) Do One Good Thing

This is where the challenge begins. Take that practical list, and cross off one thing. Don’t look at the big picture, but take things one step at a time. Sometimes, the first step is the hardest, and if you get it over with, the rest becomes much easier. Do what you can, and be proud of yourself for what you’ve accomplished…because every accomplishment deserves to be celebrated.

summer flowers and service berries in liberty blue pitcher

Final Thoughts

I hope this helps you look at your home with fresh eyes, and love what you see. I wanted brand new pictures for this post, and I really wanted to look at my home with those fresh eyes I just mentioned. So this is what I did.

I picked up a bunch of flowers from the grocery store. When I got home, I cut branches from my serviceberry tree, which right now has beautiful red berries. I just planted some new hydrangeas, so I cut a few tiny blooms. I then arranged everything in mason jars and my favorite pitcher. Just doing that simple task made me feel enormously happy. After that, I found a set of pillow covers I had ordered a few months ago, but never used. They are the perfect summer touch for our living room.

So if loving your home is a struggle, something as small as a pitcher of flowers will make a difference. Until next time…

floral bouquet 1

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  1. Thank you so much for your thoughts. I am about to make a move from a place I love to somewhere I will need to “work with”…your thoughts are an encouragement to me at an uncertain time. Your pictures are always so cheery and uplifting. Flowers are such a special addition to our homes, and your arrangements are always so beautiful!

    1. Thanks very much Sandee…and best wishes for an easy transition!

  2. All so true – thank you. A book I read many years ago and need to re-read is “Love the Home You Have” by Melissa Michaels. After leaving our forever home and downsizing, I have to be mindful of “home envy” when I visit the homes of friends in my neighborhood. The thing is our home is soo perfect for our situation and this stage in our lives. And I’m grateful for it. I loved your quote and saved it :)

  3. What a wonderful post, Ann! I hope your younger readers will listen well to your wise words. I am no longer young but agree with your advice one hundred percent. I haven’t drowned in that Sea of Comparison but it sure is hard these days with “perfect” being the word of the day {morning, noon and night).
    Thank you for this and all your posts.

    A long time reader

  4. Melissa Houston says:

    Thank you, Ann! I appreciate your good advice and positive thinking tips! I love my old condo and the community around it. However, due to water damage and rewiring, it needs lots of repairs. I have to take each project one step at a time and stay positive and not overwhelmed.

  5. Susan McKim says:

    Such good advice! Social media is my downfall. If I never scrolled I wouldn’t just have to have that particular item. I’m trying to remember, in this stage of my life at 72, I don’t need all the things I did when I was younger. Get out and enjoy the flowers along that path instead of staring at that chair that isn’t really what I for my space.

  6. Jackie M. says:

    Wow, this really hit home for me. I especially love the idea of creating a practical list and doing one thing!

  7. Thank you for this wonderful reminder. It came at a perfect time since we are in the midst of deciding to stay put and do some renovations or move – not necessarily downsize home, but the yard and pool! Your comments are so spot on to how so many of us feel and I do not even use a lot of today’s social media.
    Your kind, calm and practical words are so helpful. It helps put things in perspective to hopefully guide us in the right direction. Plus I always love your beautiful photos, especially sweet Millie.
    Happy Sunday to you.

  8. Thank You so much for such a thoughtful post. It was just what I needed.
    Have a great week!

  9. Anne Marie Gorman says:

    You have given sage advice in your post. I have lived by them all my life.

  10. Ann
    Thank you for this reminder. I am always interested in (and always will be) my surroundings. Not just inside my home but outside as well. I appreciate your posts because they so often inspire me in my pursuit of “my version of the perfect home”.
    I love your new ‘downsized’ home and get great ideas from you with every post.
    I appreciate the hard work that goes into maintaining a blog site (I used to have one).😊💟
    Have a wonderful Sunday.
    Karen B.

  11. There are days I wish my paint was different, furniture was more updated and on and on. But after reading this I realized I was the one who made these decisions. At 79, I am actually happy with the overall scene. So I went to my flower bed, picked peonies, greens and a few others and got out some of my blue and green canning jars I’ve never used and put around my kitchen, family room, and in the small bathroom off the kitchen. Amazing how those pops of colors changed things.
    So here’s this older lady seeing things differently and with an improved perspective. Thank you.

  12. Thank you! Enjoyed reading this!🙂