When we design, we try to create a space that is designed to live well. How can we draw in more light? What will help promote clutter prevention? Who and what are the key pieces that make up this client’s life and bring them joy?
The conversation has long been circulating- what effect does our home have on our well-being? Lightening, clutter, poor layout design, and not enough natural materials can all be a source of stress without us realizing it.
“All interior design elements – such as color, texture and pattern – affect how we feel on a biological and psychological level as our brains secrete neurochemicals as we experience our built environments.” – Jessica Helps (Is Your Home the Cause of your Anxiety, Lisa Hannam)
When we pay attention to our every day surroundings, and take note of how they’re making us feel, we can begin to improve our environment and elevate our mood.
Here are five tips to help foster a positive relationship between your home and your well-being:
1. Pay attention to your lighting
Natural light, when available, should always be utilized for numerous reasons- one being that it aids in boosting serotonin. But beyond this, it’s important to pay attention to your artificial lighting at night. Having the ability to dim your lighting at night or introducing lower-voltage, warm lighting, helps support the brains production of melatonin, which in turn will help you prepare for a good night of sleep.
2. Add natural elements like greenery
Introducing plants will help breathe life back into your home. Studies have shown that the presence of plants helps to reduce stress and naturally cleans the air in your home.
3. Reconfigure your layout
If your living room feels cluttered, your furniture might be too big for the space. This can also cause the body to feel stressed and the space claustrophobic. Open up your space by replacing your current furniture with pieces that are appropriately sized for the room.
4. Surround yourself with more of what/who you love
Bring more items in that make your home feel like yours. Fill your shelves with souvenirs from your travels, photos with friends and family- anything that holds a positive memory. Paint your walls colors that make you happy if the current grey or beige is leaving you uninspired.
5. Separate your work from home, even if you work from home
It’s hard to leave work behind once you’ve gone home for the day. Whether it’s connecting your phone to your work email, or taking the stress of your day to bed with you, work has a tendency to follow us home. Set the expectation for yourself that when you’re home it is your time to rest and recuperate. If you work from home, keep that work confined to your home office. Let that be a dedicated space for those responsibilities, and just like when you come home from an outside office- leave work at the door.
“Studies show that a healthy and pleasing environment (like plants, or a treasured photograph on the wall) can do more than simply improve your mood–it can actually affect your immune system and physical health.” (Linda Halcon PhD, University of Minnesota).
Have additional tips or methods you practice to keep your home feeling positive? Share them with us!