Many people are in search of answers on how to arrange their lives. People want to know what the ultimate living arrangement looks like so they can be healthy, happy, and successful.
This post will help you to ‘crack the code’ on trying to think about all the different options out there. You’ll have a clear understanding of the 5 fundamentals that are absolutely critical for your living arrangement.
I think this post is important because, with our personal development, we often forget that our environment is part of our growth. After reading this you’ll be able to take the 5 fundamentals of the ultimate living arrangement and customise your life around them.
Taking control of your environment is taking control of your life
I was going to title this post ‘The 5 fundamentals of the ultimate living situation’, but then I realised that we all find ourselves in a ‘situation’, and we sometimes can’t change that in the short-term. But with an arrangement, we can take back control over our lives by making pre-determined arrangements for the long-term.
This post is designed to empower you to take back control over your life. That starts with you making plans to create your ultimate living arrangement so that you can flourish.
Your living arrangement is one of the most important foundations that you need to build a successful life. This is because your environment has such a large impact on your mental and physical wellbeing.
Despite the importance of living arrangements, most people ignore them, thinking they can cheat their poorly designed living arrangements, and they end up suffering the consequences of living in a place that holds them back.
A common problem for couples
I want to show you a real example of a couple I know of who have major problems in knowing how to design their ultimate living arrangement. They’ve fallen into the same traps that many have before them.
These are the types of arrangements people make that only compound the stress in their life. If only they could think straight and know what fundamental elements they needed in place before they moved.
An answer to misery
Luckily for you, I’ve found the 5 fundamentals that make up a strong base for you to create a good life with no hassles. I can also confidently say that I have all 5 of these fundamentals in play in my own life right now.
But I’ve also lived in less ideal living arrangements when I was younger, so I know what it is like to have a rich and fulfilling living arrangement, and how much it really does impact the quality of your life.
Now don’t stress out if you don’t have all 5 in the short-term. But you should strive to have each one so that you can increase the quality of your life in the long-run.
The goal is to create a living arrangement, an environment, and a place, where you can truly rest and flourish.
The 5 fundamentals of the ultimate living arrangement
People: Who do you live with?
By far the most important thing is who you live with. Who you live with is fundamental to your living arrangement and quality of life. Think about who you live with right now and how they impact your life. Do they impact it positively or negatively?
If it’s negative then you’ve got a big problem. You’re literally living in a problem. Because every environment is created by the people in that environment. Change the people and you’ll change the environment.
You can feel if an environment is good for you or not. Is the environment in your home good for you?
Maybe you live with someone who impacts you both positively and negatively. If the positives are superficial or could be substituted elsewhere, and the negatives are more than just tiny annoyances but are actual hindrances, then it might be a good idea to consider living with someone else.
It’s important to understand that who you live with impacts your entire way of thinking and outlook on life. Other people can literally build you up or destroy you.
Now, for people who don’t believe me. You might not have lived with someone really horrible before. Or you might be living with someone horrible and not even realise that a better living arrangement exists for you.
When you are deciding who you should live with, it’s important to consider who that person is and how their behaviour will impact your living space and your goals. If this person would be a hindrance towards your goals then you shouldn’t live with them. If they would be a support for your goals then that is something to consider also.
When you live with other people you always have to make some kind of trade-off. The most desirable arrangement is for the trade-offs to feel natural, minimal, and easy. If you feel like you have to sacrifice a lot for little, you will have resentment, and your quality of life will erode very quickly.
This doesn’t mean you don’t put in the effort. It just means your effort is natural. You naturally work well with and compliment who you live with.
The last thing I will say about choosing who you live with is that you have to feel comfortable. Having deep psychological comfort is important in a home. This might sound funny at first, but if you can be naked in your own home then you are probably at your most comfortable. It means you see your home as a part of yourself and you can truly relax.
Space: Where can you do certain tasks?
The space in a house is important for your well-being and functioning. You don’t need a mansion or excessive space but you need adequate space. This sounds simple but many people forget that this is something that can have an impact on your well-being.
The first space you need is a place where you can have alone time. You need a place where you can hide away and quieten the noise, reflect, and do your own thing.
Another vital space of the ultimate living arrangement is a place to cook food. Some people might think it is stupid to mention this as a lot of us have a kitchen we can use. But I’m not just talking about having a kitchen, I’m talking about having a cooking space that you feel comfortable cooking in.
I’ve been to heaps of places where their kitchen is so full of garbage that they can’t possibly be eating healthy food at home because there is no were to prepare the food. I guess the point is that there shouldn’t be any physical hindrances to preparing healthy food at home. It can kill all your motivation to cook for yourself and then you can spiral into unhealthy eating habits.
Another aspect of space that relates to your health is ensuring there are adequate places for you to rest and work. I have a really nice big couch chair I can sit in and think and read, but I’ve also got the main lounge, my desk, my living room, other random chairs, and of course my bed. You might think this is trivial but it is not. Think about why zoo keepers rearrange the environment for chimpanzees, they don’t want them to become bored or unable to find places to rest. Having multiple places for you to rest and work can help you to feel relaxed or focused, whichever mode you are going for.
You also need some space for community activities where all members of the household can come together and enjoy themselves as a group. If there is not a large enough amount of chairs or space in the room for everyone then you’ll never get the entire group to bond as an entity.
Finally, the issue of space has an impact on how many people you would like to live with. If I wanted to, I could rent out a room of my house, but I know that more money would not add enough value to my life to cover the detriment to my psychological well-being from having less space to relax. Also, the more people you add the harder it is to control all the factors that produce the ultimate living arrangement. This will depend on temperament, but I personally prefer to live with one person and have other people visit every now and again.
Money: How much does it cost?
A fantastic living environment does not require a large amount of money. It does require a base amount of money, but more important than money, it requires the strategic use of resources to minimise expenses with the goal to minimise stress.
Two things are needed, a shift in needing a lot of money to be happy, and a shift in how you use your money. Basically, I suggest you find a living arrangement in a location where you can pay less, but without a drop in the points made in this post. So you find that ideal balance between cost and everything else.
As financial pressure is one of the major causes of stress in our society it is a no-brainer that minimising your housing cost can boost your quality of life. Why live in a luxurious house when you come home stressed every day trying to pay for it?
I moved away from the major city I was living in and found a place that would have cost $200 per week more if I had stayed and found a similar place in the city. It’s one of the best things I have ever done, and not just because of the money, but it definitely helps.
Now, I obviously realise that where you work will have an impact on where you live and that’s why I advocate for an internet based business or work life where your location is not a limiting issue. But if you can’t do this right now then that’s okay, just keep your eye out for ways to minimise the cost of living in the location you are restricted to. This might sound trivial, but many people don’t think about these things strategically enough.
Yes, you might be ‘stuck’ in a situation for the short term, but long term it is likely you can implement most, if not all, of these elements into your life.
You don’t necessarily need to move cities like I did, but just keep a look out for better options to lessen your financial burden without dropping in the other fundamentals. If you don’t feel any financial pressure then that’s good because that’s the main thing I’m getting at with this point.
You don’t want to build up any resentment towards where you live because you can’t afford it.
Positioning: What’s close to you?
Strategically thinking about the positioning of where you live will make sure you have access to facilities that enable you to enjoy your life.
To balance out the point on money, it’s important to make decisions with all the fundamentals in mind. I’ve known people who travel 2 hours to work and back. That’s 4 hours of their time travelling. They can’t cook food during this time, they can’t exercise during this time (unless they are riding their bike), and they can’t rest properly during this time. Yes, their housing is cheaper but they pay a lot for travel and they also suffer wasted time.
If you can use travel time to your advantage then it might be okay, but I personally don’t think you’d be able to do any serious personal growth task without getting distracted or feeling uncomfortable. Assess the situation realistically and look to see how much the distance will impact the quality of your life.
I personally have always favoured living close to my workplace, and I’ve managed to strategically position myself near other facilities, nature spots, and food vendors. I think positioning is underappreciated when it comes to thinking about how it impacts on the quality of your life.
Everything I need is so close to me that I only have to drive a maximum of 15 minutes to get to it. This didn’t just magically happen, I strategically looked for where I’d be working, nature spots where I could walk, shopping centres where I could get necessities, and other unique aspects of the location that I could use to bring joy to my life.
I won’t be living where I am for the rest of my life, but I know how to find a living environment that suits who I am, and that is the main thing to take away from this.
Make sure you take the time to explore your environment and find facilities and places that will be beneficial to your life. You might already have some amazing things around your location but have failed to recognise them. It’s always a good idea, especially if there is a nature spot, to get out of the house and enjoy the world around you.
Again, I know this might sound trivial, but don’t just brush this off, because enjoying your location is an important element of feeling like your environment is good for you.
As humans, we all have a mental and emotional connection and relationship with our environment. If we feel like our environment isn’t good for us or that it’s toxic, then we are not going to enjoy living in that environment. Again it sounds simple, but we all intuitively know that certain places, cities, and suburbs make us feel a certain way.
Life is already hard enough, we want our environment, and our location, to work for us and not against us.
I found this beautiful lake near my house where I go for a walk and look at the turtles and birds. It’s a place where I like to reflect, relax, and appreciate nature.
Maintenance: When and how are you going to maintain the place?
The final fundamental of the ultimate living arrangement is to take care of the maintenance of the house. Make sure you know when and how you can keep your living space clean and maintained. I say this because it is important for your cognitive load.
Our minds don’t need to worry about anything if they know when and how something is going to be taken care of. If you know the grass man is going to cut your lawn on Thursday, you don’t have to worry about it. You don’t have to think about the grass.
If you know you’ll clean the dishes every night at 7pm then you and the people you live with know that and don’t have to worry about it until it’s time to clean.
On the other hand, if you don’t think about maintenance at all then you’ll likely be working against your own clutter. A clean working space helps to motivate you and allows you to focus on your tasks instead of worrying about all the mess on your floor.
It’s okay to be messy, as that’s a part of living, but knowing when and how something is going to get cleaned back up lets your mind focus on the task right in front of you until it’s time to deal with the mess.
Knowing how and when also makes sure you don’t procrastinate on important tasks by filling in time with cleaning.
Maintenance needs to be done but it shouldn’t weigh on your mind too much. So set a time to shine and forget it. This approach means your place should be less messy, but even if it is messy, it creates a sense of certainty and comfortability because you can be certain the chaos of mess will be dealt with.
Your ultimate living arrangement
I hope these 5 fundamentals give you something to think about and help you to create your ultimate living arrangement. They are based on my personal experience and preference. But I’d also like to know how you feel about creating your own ultimate living arrangement.
Question: Can you add anything or do you have any other advice you’d like to share that could help others? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
Question: Can you add anything or do you have any other advice you’d like to share that could help others? You can leave a comment by clicking here.