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Stress Management - Paint Your Room!

Aug 17, 2007
Sometimes you feel as if the worries of the world are piled on your shoulders and it's killing you! You come home from work dead tired and still you can't relax. Your mind keeps revisiting the errors of the day and predicts doom for the days ahead! Your wife reminds you that it's your night to take the kids to music practice or karate school or any of the endless extra curricular activities that consume our children's time! There's never enough time for everything you have to do!

You need a break! You need to do something enjoyable that will take your mind off all your troubles. Painting one of your rooms is such a project. You probably have more than one room that desperately needs painting, but we'll start with just one. We wouldn't want this project to seem like work, would we? Obviously there will be a few folks who will disagree with me and categorize painting as something akin to the pain involved in a root canal. For those people I offer a few small bits of wisdom that could help them get over their fatalistic thoughts about painting a room.

We want a stress free painting experience so we'll only buy a few things we need instead of spending a lot of money. Spending money to most of us is stressful so we'll do as little of that as possible. You'll need a good paintbrush, probably one that will use latex paints, since that is the overwhelming choice today for paints. You will also need a roller and a roller handle along with a paint tray. You will also need a small can of spackling paste to patch holes. Other than some kind of drop cloths to cover the floor and furniture, that's all you need to buy! I didn't mention a step ladder because you can find one of those small 2 step ladders in most homes today. If you need a putty knife, buy it; they're cheap!

If we're going to paint the ceiling, we'll do that first. You don't want paint spray from the ceiling on newly painted walls. One of my rules is "If you don't want to put it back together, don't take it apart!" There is really no need to take down light fixtures, ceiling fans or vent covers when you can paint around them. I know, you think you'll get paint on things you're not supposed to paint. Don't worry! You're probably better at trimming around a ceiling fan than you think you are.

The key in trim work is to do it with soft swift long strokes. Short strokes show mistakes easily. If you do it rapidly, you're don't have time to second guess your performance. Just keep painting and believe that you're good. You don't need masking tape to paint a ceiling's edge. Just do it! If you concentrate too much, you'll mess up! By this point your cares and anxieties are probably gone and the only thing you're thinking about is painting that room!

One thing you do need to take down if you're painting the walls, are any drapery material or curtains that you have in the room. If you're only doing the ceiling, just spread something over the drapes to avoid droplets from the ceiling.

Most ceilings need two coats, so roll on the first coat as well as you can. The second coat will cover any thin spots you might have. Wear a cap that will cover your glasses if you wear them or else you'll have little drops of paint all over them. If you didn't buy a drop cloth, use old sheets, old shower curtains or buy a couple of those cheap plastic things you spread over furniture. There is one rule irrefutable rule in painting: "Where you don't have a drop cloth, that's where a drop of paint will fall!" See how much better you're feeling already? You're just about ready to start and you haven't spent a lot of money.

You may as well plan on filling a few nail holes and scratches with spackling paste. All walls have them. Only use a small amount of the filler for each hole, and then scrape most of it off with your putty knife. After it dries put another layer over the first. Scrape it off again and hit it a few strokes with sandpaper after it dries and you're ready to paint! See how easy that is? Feel the stress starting to fade? You've already saved yourself a lot of work just on filling nail holes. This is one of these cases where less is definitely more!

If you're painting doors and windows in your room, paint them first. It's best to use a deglosser on wood work before you apply paint. It cleans grease and dirt off the wood and paint adheres better.

Think of the money you have saved by painting the room yourself! That, in itself, should have lessened the stress in your life. But if you're naturally sloppy and are particular about how the job looks, hire a painter and bring back the stress!
About the Author
Bob Alexander is the author and owner of this copyrighted article. He is well experienced in outdoor cooking, holiday eating and leisure living. Visit his sites at:
http://www.bluemarlinbob.com
http://www.homeandgardenbob.com
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