What Does Happiness, Science & Decorating Have in Common?

Recently, I came across a study done by the University Of Florida about the relationship of our happiness with our ability to easily make decisions and feel at peace once we have made them. Basically, the study suggested that people who think too much before making decisions and debating with themselves as to whether they have made the right decision or not, put themselves at risk of suffering from unhappiness.  According to this study, people who can make decisions easily by Making decorating and Design decisions following their guts’ instincts, and being content with their decisions, are more likely to live happy lives and have wonderful careers, not to mention better health.  The purpose of this study was to find ways to help these groups of indecisive people who agonize themselves over every decision and feel stuck. 

I love scientists and I appreciate all they do to make our lives better. I can understand why severe indecision could cause grief and I am delighted that scientists are working on finding ways to remedy this problem. However, I wonder if these decorating decisions!studies included any designers and/or any design decision category. Why?  Because, I feel strongly about one area where being indecisive is a good thing and that is in the design arena. 

 When I work with my design clients, I often tell them “don’t make a rash decision”, “live with it for a while”, or “take different samples and see which one will grow on you.”  Making numerous decisions and selecting investment pieces is intimidating for most people. I purposely encourage my clients to take their time in making their decisions. 

Being indecisive when it comes to design is something that I believe we all have experienced. We’ve gone to a paint shop and picked up a few paint swatch samples and put them on our walls to see which one we like. We have hung a frame on the wall to only re-hang it again somewhere else at a different height. We have bought several pillows in different colors and shapes to try out and returned the rest. 

 Indecision can cause stress and dissatisfaction. I agree with this university study and their conclusion, but when it comes to decorating and designing, I believe coming to a design decision slowly, the process of it, is just pure joy. In addition, this way clients have seen the design project evolving and through it, they have also learned some design aspects and their own likes and dislikes.  For me, these facts make decorating and design indecisiveness a good and even a necessary thing. 

It is easy to go and just buy whatever you see in the first store and exactly as they have displayed their products. But again, where is the JOY in that? If you want to change your home decor or decorate your new home, I advise you to visit many, many stores and look at lots and lots of magazines. Cut out the pictures that you like or take pictures of any displays that inspire you. Then edit them. Soon, you’ll start seeing a pattern. This is the first step – and remember, the process is what makes these type of projects fun. 

What projects are you working on? What has been your experience? 

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