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We spend a great deal of time in our homes, and due to COVID-19 this time has only increased. Some of us may be working from home while others have been shielding. Other’s may simply want to stay safe and remain inside as much as possible. Either way, we need to seriously start considering the comfort of our homes and how it impacts our lives. First and foremost, it’s very important that our home environment is a desirable one to live in. Not only do we need an established supply of food, good hygiene, and entertainment, but we also require comfortable spaces to retreat to. Although some of us may not have the luxury of re-decorating our home, even providing one small, soft space to unwind is better than nothing at all.
Comfortable spaces have a great influence on our mood, behavior, motivation, and even our stress levels. The visuals, the colour of the area, lighting, fresh air, and noise all contribute to our varying levels of calm.
A lack of natural light, excessive and continuous noise, clutter, overcrowding, poor hygiene, and poor ventilation can all have a huge impact on us. If we live with these things on a daily basis, we’re going to begin to see negative impacts on our mental, physical, and even our emotional health. It’s important that the majority if not all of these issues are addressed in order for us to feel a sense of calm. Even if you don’t think it, the above can have a detrimental impact on your life and how well you and your family function.
Interested in learning more about how interior design can impact you? Check out this post.
How to optimise your environment to create a comfortable space.
Remove and clear clutter as much as possible.
I’ve discussed the impacts of clutter at length in “How clutter impacts the workspace.” In that post, we learn about the varying issues that clutter can create including the mental, physical, and emotional impacts.
Clutter not only creates an eyesore, but it also increases our stress levels, reduces emotional tolerance, and increases the likelihood of bacteria and dust. None of the above are ideal for creating a calm environment and therefore it’s essential that we reduce ‘mess‘ as much as possible. Minimalism is ideal but not necessary. Not everyone enjoys the minimalist vision and that’s perfectly fine, but we can reduce the clutter in our space without removing everything.
Pick the right colours.
Did you know that our bodies and minds react differently to different colours? Yellows and blues tend to be more relaxing colours, while deep reds, blacks and even some greys can be stimulating and negatively received. If you’re able to paint your chosen room or area, it’s suggested that you use bright or pastel tones in order to promote a sense of calm. Here’s a quick run down of some of the primary colours that influence our mood.
- Green represents balance and harmony, specifically if it’s pastel.
- Blues are a popular calming colour in bedrooms and bathrooms.
- Yellows are considered to be emotional, and can even encourage a feeling of optimism.
- Whites, although clinical, are also natural and clean. They add some much-needed light to small areas but the wrong tone may also trigger some to become more anxious.
Everyone is different, so pick a colour that creates calm within you. Get some swatches from your local hardware store or even buy small sample sizes of paint to try on the walls before committing. You can even get some funky wallpapers to really make it pop!
*If you rent please make sure that you speak to your landlord before painting.
Struggling to find the love in your home? Check out this post to help you learn how to fall in love with your home again.
Make sure you’re physically comfortable.
How we feel physically has a big impact on our mental health. If we’re feeling unwell or uncomfortable, it can create a shroud of darkness. No matter what we do, if we’re living in discomfort, it’ll be difficult to maintain a positive outlook on life.
Remember to stock up on comfortable cushions, well downed pillows, warm blankets to keep us warm and a better mattress for a better night’s sleep. If you suffer from any aches, pains or physical difficulties, it’s also important to consider the various tools available to help you live a safer and more comfortable life. There are so many things available that can help with mobility around the house such as walking aids, rise recliners, and a fully adjustable hospital bed in your own home.
If you want the optimum calming experience burn a few scented candles or even invest in a diffuser. Smells are one of the easiest ways to encourage particular emotions and sensations. While smells like citrus encourage us to be more energetic, lavender promotes sleep and relaxation.
Want to know more about how smells work to decrease stress levels? Check out this post all about aromatherapy.
Create balance with Feng Shui.
Have you ever heard of Feng Shui? It’s the Chinese art of optimising your living space to promote a harmonising flow of energy! Feng Shui splits the world into five main elements: wood, fire, earth, metal, and water.
Everyone’s space and what we have access to are different. Like many things, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. Although some may suggest hiring a professional, that’s only necessary if you’re really taking things seriously. I much prefer experimenting and learning things in my own way so that I can best cater to it to me. But I’m far from an expert, therefore I highly recommend checking out this guide to simple Feng Shui.
You should also check out this guide to the perfect pillow arrangement. Is it essential? No. But will you need these aesthetics in your life? Big yes!
Natural light and fresh air has a lot to do with our mood! Lack of exposure to natural lighting is known for causing a disruption to our circadian rhythms, which later results in a variety of other physical and mental illnesses. Think about it. When the spring arrives and the sun finally appears, we generally begin to feel better. Therefore it’s a good idea to pick a spot that allows you access to natural sunlight and, if possible, some fresh air from an open window!
How have you created a calming space in your home? Do you have any more tips to share?
Thank you so much to Millercare for the opportunity to work with them on this post. Millercare is the premier specialist provider of mobility and healthcare equipment in the North West of England. If you’re in need of any mobility accessories to make your life easier, check out their website for more information.