Another guest post, which you are welcome to share with your clients…
Your last child has finally flown the coop, and instead of feeling a sense of freedom, you are overwhelmed by sadness. While you may think this reaction is confusing or unexpected, it’s actually perfectly normal. So normal, in fact, that it has a special name— empty nest syndrome.
Though you have encouraged and supported your children on their path to independence, the day they finally leave is nonetheless painful. You can work through these emotions by focusing on budget-friendly DIY home improvement projects that can help fill and utilize the new open space.
Plus, these projects can give you a sense of purpose and add meaning to your life— which is often the real reason we feel bittersweet when our children leave home.
Need help making the most of your extra space? Here are a few inexpensive ideas to keep you busy now and into the future.
A Place to Relax
When your children move out, you get more than just extra bedrooms. Chances are you have an extra bathroom or two, as well. This is the perfect setting for an easy DIY project that keeps on giving— a home spa.
From a simple installation like a new shower head to purchasing a new jacuzzi tub, upgrading your bathroom is one of the most common— and most effective— projects for empty-nesters. Bring in a foot spa to soak tired feet after a long day and add new lights around mirrors and vanities to create a sense of glamour.
You can even keep big renovations under budget by taking advantage of weekly deals and money back opportunities at home improvement stores like Lowe’s. Take the time to plan out your remodeling ideas so that you can do research savings on plumbing, lighting and decor.
A Place to Let Go
When you are dealing with an emotionally trying situation, having a space that encourages peace and serenity can benefit both your mind and body.
Now that you have an extra bedroom or two, consider renovating one into a meditation and yoga space. It likely won’t take much in the way of construction— though if there is nice hardwood flooring under carpet you may want to consider tearing it up. Outside of that, you can set up the space with low-wattage lighting that creates a soft, gentle mood.
Purchase a comfortable chair that keeps your back upright and your feet on the ground, or explore meditation pillows that you can use on the floor. Speakers for playing peaceful music and some artwork that depicts nature scenes can really add to the calming feel.
You can get these housewares and home goods at a steal by looking at third-party sites for coupons and promo codes for stores like Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond.
A Place to Get in Shape
A child moving out symbolizes a lot of other major life changes— many of which come with getting older. If you’ve been dealing with the stress of becoming an empty-nester with some less-than-ideal coping habits— like eating a lot of comfort food or watching a lot of sad TV— then this next home improvement project could be just what you need to get your life back together.
A home gym is a great choice for empty-nesters for several reasons. For starters, the major remodeling tasks can be minimal. You’ll just want to be sure you have the right equipment— from stud finders if you’ll be attaching equipment to walls to tape measures for making sure the machines and storage will fit.
You can get great deals on used fitness equipment by checking out stores like Play It Again Sports or shopping online at Amazon Warehouse Deals.
How you deal with an empty nest is all about perspective. After dealing with an initial bout of sadness and sorrow, you are likely to find that an empty nest can actually improve your relationships, boost freedom and provide space to reconnect with your own needs and interests.
Don’t rush or ignore the pain, but find positive activities— like these simple home improvement ideas— on which you can focus your time, money and mind.
Paul Denikin got into DIY home repair projects after his daughter was born with special needs. His initial efforts were all motivated by the desire to make his home more accessible for her.
He created DadKnowsDIY.com to share some of the great resources he’s come across and to offer home improvement project how-tos and other accessibility information.