As I sat and reflected on all of the DIY jobs that I wanted to do over the years, I started wondering if other people were as excited about kitchen remodels, renovating their basements, and even doing basic home repairs as I’ve been.
I know it’s not very glorious, and DIY home repair can be strenuous at times, but it can also be quite liberating. In a strange way, it’s the ultimate stress-reliever. When you get your hands dirty and start reconstructing your home, you really have time to reconstruct your life.
These DIY projects and remodels are therapeutic for me.
I know what you’re thinking… seriously?! Just hire a contractor to do the work for you. Save the trip to Home Depot, all the hassle of doing it yourself, take your family out to the beach, and let the work crew take care of it.
But all that misses the point.
When You Rebuild a Home, You Can Rebuild Your Life
With every new project, I get to take another look not only at my home, but also at myself and deeply rethink how I’ve been doing this past year. Have I been the parent I want to be? The spouse that goes out of his way for his wife? Am I really living up to the values and morals I believe in?
For many people DIY is just an opportunity to save money, get bragging rights (“You see these countertops? Yup, I installed them. That chandelier, I did that too.”), and to improve the value of their home.
But for me, it’s an opportunity to better appreciate just what I can accomplish in this world. With every new project, I tell myself: “If I can build this, I certainly must be able to build myself into the best me I can be.”
After coming to this conclusion, I realized others could benefit from this newfound insight. I started Home Repair Ninja, a blog for people like me who wanted to learn everything they could about DIY home repairs and upgrades. It’s yet another way that I clear my head and de-stress. It helps me wrap my head around what matters most in life (God, family, being a great husband, being honest and upright, just to name a few).
Giving Back is Liberating
That blog is my small way of giving back now. With every post, I’m creating another inroad that can help someone else not only rebuild their home, but maybe even rebuild a part of themselves. You see, DIYers are all a bit similar: we get excited by taking action and helping people. When we pick up that hammer, paint roller, or drill, we’re really just trying to pick up the people around us.
For those of you out there who find it hard to imagine finishing your basement on your own, you can start off really small. You know that door that gets stuck every time on your hardwood floor? Sand it down a bit at the bottom. As you’re sanding it down, tell yourself that you’re also sanding down the rough edges around yourself that block you from being the friend you’d really like to be.
How about the light bulb that’s been out for months in your guest bathroom? Go out and buy a new one. Stand on a chair and change the light bulb. As you see the illumination that the room was lacking for so long, remind yourself that you too can help illuminate the world around you.
It’s really easier than you might think, and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist. Anyone can do it, and it might just be the best remedy out there for a lot of emotional problems. Call it an offshoot of mindfulness therapy. Give it a try, and start off small. If it can help you slow down the rapid pace of your life, calm your nerves, or even make you think bigger, then it already succeeded.
Whether you choose to try this out or not, remember one thing: you have boundless worth and potential.
You have the power to build the world, and no one on this planet has the same strengths, talents, and life experiences that you do. These gifts were given to you to go out there and make something beautiful, and you have the power to do precisely that.