What Kind of Decorator Are You?

Even good people make judgments about wealth, creativity, cleanliness and intelligence by checking out one another's living spaces. That's why many of us, including individuals who can manage massive budgets or spearhead worldwide relief efforts, feel totally incapable of arranging our own furniture.

Interior Decorating Anxiety, a disorder I'll call Ida, is an unrelenting taskmistress. Ida broadcasts constant verbal abuse from her perch in your superego. Ida can be pleased—for a moment. Ida's victims tend to think the issue is a lack of talent or training, when actually their problem combines a longing to be valued and accepted with a corresponding terror of being mocked or rejected. This emotional reaction blocks creativity, obliterating the ability to make beautiful spaces in which to live and love.

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PUBLISHED: 06/23/2008