Finding Yourself in Design

A few years ago I gave a talk at a conference held on Catalina Island. It was winter as you can see from the rain and the island was empty. There are two elements in this photo that I would say my Soul craves: light and movement in architecture. Rounded arches are everything!

I grew up with a mother who loved design. Our home was decorated in Colonial American style. I spent my childhood traipsing in and out of antique shops with my mother in quest of pitchers with matching bowls. I assumed we had the same taste. Why I made this assumption eludes me.

One day I decided to do an experiment. For a year I went through magazines tearing out images I liked. I put them in a folder. I did not sort them into categories or give them a second look. (Today I would use Pinterest.) At the end of a year, I looked at the images to see if I found common elements. Much to my surprise not one image remotely related to Colonial America made the cut. I was almost exclusively drawn to the rounded arches of Moorish architecture and the colors of Morocco and India. 'Who knew?' as they say in some quarters.

This discovery set me on a personal quest to divest myself of what did not express who I am at my core and to find items that did. Had money been no object, I would have done a clean sweep and been done in a few months. I am grateful I took the slow road. It made the journey more meaningful. I invite you to do a similar experiment and see what you discover. You don't have to save images for a year! You might be done in a weekend. This is your journey to enjoy.

If you have been surrounded by strong personalities, you may not know who you are in form and design. As your organizing journey ends, you will want to be sure you live not only with peace and order but with a fully embraced expression of who you are down to your very Soul. I'd love to hear what you discover.

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