We’ve all been there: a long day of commuting, working to tight deadlines and returning home to cook - then downtime before going to bed. Having a living space that relaxes and comforts you is key to winding down after battling the daily struggles we face, and this can go a long way for our mental health.
A recent piece of research from Carpetright, delves into what interior design choices evoke the most pleasurable feelings within us. Ranging from placing plants around the house to storage solutions to stimulating our five senses, below are ways you can make your home a mindful space.
Bring The Outdoors In
Mark McCance, director of Hortology.co.uk - the indoor plant experts, shares his expert opinions on ‘biophilic design’ and what plants to bring into your humble abode. In Mark’s words, biophilic design is “the introduction of greenery such as houseplants, green walls or natural materials as an important element of health and wellbeing”. With house plants acting as natural air purifiers that “keep airborne toxins well below recommended levels”, mood improvers and as beautiful decoration, of course, they are bound to make you feel good vibes in your home. Hortology suggests starting with easy-care all-rounders such as the Dragon Trees and Kentia Palms – both having air-purifying benefits and beautiful looks.
Stimulate The Senses
Pretty plants around the home, leaning on a comfy fuzzy pillow next to you and a lovely scented candle – what do all these things have in common? They are targeting your five senses and stimulating your brain in positive ways that evoke pleasurable feelings. The scents, colours and even materials that surround you, have a huge impact on your mind’s ability to wind down and relax.
For example, if you’re after relaxing scents, try lavender-based candles and oils, and if you’re looking for a lively pick-me-up go for citrusy scents. Same goes for the colours on your walls, accessories and furnishings. Yellow tones are associated with optimism and confidence, blues and greens are a great way to bring harmonious feelings to a space, where reds and oranges are geared for evoking excitement and warmth. Experiment with the colours, smells and textures your mind prefers and tailor your space towards those choices. Give your mental wellbeing that boost every evening when winding down in a space that caters to what you really cherish.
Use Lighting To Your Advantage
Another interesting area of homes is lighting. Natural sunlight that falls in through our windows, the lights we use in the evenings, and daylights all affect how we feel. Blue light emitted by our screens mimic sunlight and its waking effect; limiting screen-time in the evenings could help you doze off quicker and experience higher quality sleep. We can tweak the lighting in your home following a similar approach in the previous section.
With plenty of choices when it comes to lighting thanks to cheap LED technology, it’s as simple as picking colour-changing bulbs. With the more advanced and experienced ‘smart’ light systems on one side and the cheaper manual LED bulbs on the other, it’s about personal preference and budget. Both allow you to do the basic task of tailoring your light colour and intensity to your mood and limit exposure to blue light when needed.
Clean Space, Clean Mind
The saying ‘a cluttered house is a cluttered mind’ could not be any truer. After a long day in the concrete jungle, the last thing we want is to worry about is cleaning our house or dodging carefully engineered clothes piles.
With the success of ‘Tidying Up With Marie Kondo’ on Netflix, the idea of de-cluttering homes has stormed the internet. By only keeping items that ‘spark joy’ and discarding those that don’t, we free space in our homes whilst surrounding ourselves with things we really love – a win-win situation. Creative storage solutions available means organising your home is easier than ever – meaning less stress on your mind once everything is neatly placed away.