Apartment Therapy: What Does Your Home Say about You?

Could it be that your apartment's decor and cleanliness problems aren't about lack of time or space but - gasp! - reveal the Real You?

Credit: back_garage

If you don’t have a beautiful apartment, is it because you’re fundamentally flawed?

I’m not sure how a search for a George Michael CD I’d unintentionally broken at a party led to the recommendation of a book called Apartment Therapy.

Still, I consider the accident fortuitious.

Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan’s premise in the book – that our underlit hovels with their piles of trash or, conversely, clinical emptiness betoken not sloth, poverty or the oft-bemoaned time deficit, but manifest our emotional issues – makes intuitive sense, especially when you consider the evidence (piles of paper that have remained untouched since 2006, anyone?)

Warm and Cool on Home Maintenance

Gillingham-Ryan divides people into warm or cool categories when it comes to home decor and maintenance. Warm types hoard more and more stuff into their already messy and disorganized nests.

Cool types have virtual hotel suites for homes in the style of Up in the Air’s relentless jetsetter Ryan Bingham: their places are determinedly anonymous and barely lived in.

Both sets complain; cool sorts that they’re missing warmth, warm ones that they don’t have room for it all. In just eight weeks, Apartment Therapy promises to get your place on the couch, discover your deep-rooted emotional problems and fix them. That’s the sort of therapy timeline that’s very appealing.

Apartment Therapy started life as a blog. While the format of the latter is more piecey, with spinoffs into cooking, kids and DIY, it does feature stunning photos of readers’ apartments, many fixed up on a shoestring budget.

Does Apartment Therapy Actually Work?

If, like me, you believe that your abode is a reflection not just of your spare cash, your aesthetic sense or lack thereof, and the hours you can devote to it, but actually gives a window into your psyche, you’ll be inspired to clean up and clear out your tatty storeroom and hoarded piles with Gillingham-Ryan’s common-sense philosophy coupled with yes-you-can-style photos.

At least that’s the theory. Does it work? Watch this space for updates.