DIY : Retreat..

I don’t know about you, but I seem to associate the word ‘retreat’ with a weekend away, or a holiday. It seems we can’t relax in our own homes, only when we go to a new or temporary place for however long.

Unfortunately, I can’t afford to pay for these kinds of retreats (I spend all my money on food that I do NOT need!!), so I make do with what I’ve got. As I still live at home, the only room I can call mine is my bedroom and so, gradually I’ve turned it into a comforting and cosy room to retreat to every day after work or when I need some alone time.

(What’s important to note here is, if you do live with other people, you need to find a balance and ensure you don’t isolate yourself and spend every hour of every day alone in your bedroom, because it’s unhealthy for you.)

Your Favourite Things

The first tip I’d give is to fill your room with as many bits and bobs that make you feel calm or happy as you can without it getting too cluttered. Remember that this room, whichever you’re using, is for your retreat and so essentially is all about you. Design it however you like, whatever is going to comfort you when you need a minute or more.

Comfortable Space

As it’s your space to relax and unwind, I’d advise ensuring you have comfy add on’s to your furniture such as lots of blankets and cushions. This could also include footwear such as slippers and fluffy socks for extra comfort!

‘Fairy’ Lights and Lots of Little Lights

If you’re a proper “macho man” and are reading this thinking ‘sod that, fairy lights are for girls’, it’s 2018, just get the fairy lights okay. My posts are directed at BOTH men and women. Lights are lights at the end of the day. Fairy lights / little lights give a warm and calm feeling to any room, in fact I use them to unwind every single night, to calm myself down after a busy day.

Calming Visuals

I don’t think my room actually has any wall space left, as I’ve filled it with so many pictures, positive quotes and people or images that inspire me. I also have an Australian flag up in my room! I’ve filled it with bits of me and items that comfort me and make me happy, so to speak. Whatever calms and comforts you, put it up on the walls, the windowsill, wherever!! I’d also recommend tapestries, if you have the room, they can be found on Amazon and eBay, they’re very popular so aren’t hard to find.

Incense Sticks or Cones

Not everyone’s cup of tea, but a must for me. I personally like to use lavender in the evenings and patchouli in the mornings, but there are a variety of scents available, again, on Amazon and eBay.


I’d recommend a light-hearted, easy to read book, of your genre preference, simply because you’ll be using this room to unwind and relax not to be fully concentrating on something. Alongside this, a book to write in or doodle! If you feel like you need to get it out, get it out on paper in the way that’ll work best for you.

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Wellbeing writer, host for The Inspired Narrative podcast and mental health support worker.