How to Create a Personal Altar in Shared Spaces

Sometimes our spiritual practices might weird people out.  Why do you have all those rocks? people ask.  What's all this stuff on this table? they'll say.  Often as their picking items up and turning them over in their hands.  Keeping a discreet altar - whether in your home, office, or dorm room - can have an array of benefits with out having to explain things to curious folks.  Though, I am always down for it personally...it can be kind of distracting.
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Creating an altar in your personal space is important.  Whether it is for ritualistic practices or a place for peace and meditation, we often don't want to have our personal spaces invaded or feel odd for having them in the first place.  Keeping a discreet altar space can be perfect for those still in the broom closet or those who share a common space - like a shared apartment or dorm room, or for a more intimate office setting.  Personally, I have a big ol altar at home in my spare room that I don't care if anyone sees but when it comes to keeping somethings on my office desk - for personal power, calming vibes, and just all around comfort - I choose to do something discreetly that doesn't even seem like an altar at all!

Items to Include on your Altar

While everyone has different things on their altars here are a few key pieces to keep in mind:

The Elements 

You can represent the elements - fire, air, earth, water - in various ways.  Add plants for earth, an essential oil diffuser for air & water, etc.  You can also charge these things with your intentions as you set up your work space.  The great thing about a diffuser is that you can choose certain oils with certain correspondences but you can also charge the water with your intentions as you fill your diffuser for the day.

Deity Correspondences 

Different knick knacks on your desk can have different associations to certain deities if that is a part of your practice.  You don't need to have an all out dedicated statue that may seem out of place (we're attempting to be discreet here) but just a little tchotchke with your personal deities will add just a touch of reverence to your space.

Current/Relevant Spellwork

This may be something that might only apply if you're currently doing any spellwork around your place of business - maybe keeping a money spell present, etc.  Not something totally necessary but you may find a place for it.

Personal Power Objects

While a little woo woo for my office, I used to keep the current crystals I was working with on my desk.  These were visual reminders for me throughout the day for certain energies and emotions I was attempting to usher into my life.  Same with the essential oils I'd use.  You can also choose other tchotchke like items that have a certain personal power significance to you but that aren't necessarily woo woo.

Creating Your Altar, Discreetly

Like I mentioned, at home I go all out with what I've got on my altar - crystals, boxes, oils, incense, animal totems, sabbat decorations, I mean it's endless (and often a mess!).  But in smaller or more public spaces, we can be more choosy or specific.

 Work Space Altar

Shop this Look

Depending on where you work, your personal space may have very different types of decor.  The example above has a sleek look and features a lot of light.  This is a great little space to feel inspired!  I imagine the person in this office getting so much stuff done!

My personal desk space at work isn't as elegant as this so I choose to express my quirky fun side with some plant Shopkins (yes, I'm a 30 year old woman who thinks shopkins are the cutest), my diffuser, and other objects that remind me to lighten up.  My job can be kind of intense with a lot of frantic energy so fun little objects that lighten the mood and cheerful essential oils keep me in the good vibes category!

Dorm Room Altar

Shop this Look

I think most of the time in a dorm room or shared apartment we're among like minded people so it might not be too weird to have some of these things around your space. But we still might not be ready for a ton of questions.  Creating a small altar space on your desk, night stand, or little shelf in your room can make our shared spaces seem a little more sacred.

When I was in college I loved to have small collections of inspiring nick knacks.  These little collections of things really made me fill at home and gave me a space to feel inspired.

Creating these personal altars bring a feeling of safety to our spaces.  We feel at home and we feel like we can still work on our personal goals.  Sometimes we are asked to be different people in different spaces - at work I'm not going to blabber on about chakras (unless someone asks) - so bringing elements of ourselves into these spaces can give us a sense of purpose.

If you'd like to learn more about crystals, essential oils, chakras, etc head on over to join the Live & Create Facebook group where we talk about mindful & creative living through productivity, planning, and personal growth!

Do you personalize your spaces?  Do you have a personal altar at work?

xoxo, Moe

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