As our busy lifestyle makes more and more demands on our time and energy, we can feel mentally and physically overwhelmed by work, family and personal commitments. Spending time in a home designed to help you feel more relaxed and in control can be a great way to purge stress and anxiety that could be affecting your health and wellbeing.
Being surrounded by things you love to look at encourages calm and positive feelings, while visual clutter on surfaces and floors in your home drains your energy by reminding you of unfinished tasks.And it’s so much easier to find your belongings when they’re tidy and tucked away in cupboards and drawers. Everything from furniture and appliances to photos, storage and soft furnishings should be carefully chosen to bring a sense of order and belonging to your surroundings, reminding you that you’re in control of your life and ready to enjoy it.
When you’re looking at what to keep, or what to add, natural features can add a sense of peace and harmony. Replace the clutter with indoor plants and arrange your furniture to make the most of views to the garden and landscape around your home.
Clearing clutter should be a particularly high priority for the entrance to your home. Being greeted by a tidy area brings positive feelings and energy as you transition from work to home mode. Make it easy to hang up keys and stash shoes, bags and coats with the right storage, and position photos, artworks, flowers or favourite objects to set the right tone every time you come home.
Natural light is an effective mood booster so make the most of available light from windows and use mirrors and reflective, uncluttered surfaces to add to natural light levels. When it comes to artificial lighting, choose softer light sources that suit the area. Install floor and table lamps so you can easily switch between stronger task lighting when you need to focus and softer light to help you relax.
Embracing the soothing hues of nature in your decorating style – green for trees and plants, gold and yellow for the sun and sand, and blue for the sky and water – can be a great way encourage serenity and banish stress from your home. Try balancing a softer, more neutral colour palette with touches of energising colours, like red, orange and turquoise, to bring back your vitality and optimism when you’re feeling tired and worn out.
Good quality appliances can make a big difference to your home’s comfort and amenity. In the kitchen, buy the best stove, fridge, kettle (etc.) you can afford. You make food every day and few things are more persistently annoying than a poorly designed and poorly equipped kitchen. The same rule applies for the rest of the house – don’t blow your budget but focus on quality and usability and you’ll enjoy your home so much more.
Bathrooms and bedrooms play a vital role in helping you feel calm and relaxed at home. Your bathroom should be a sanctuary, a place where you can relax in a tub and wash away your troubles – or get yourself ready to face the world. Similarly, your bedroom should be a safe and relaxing haven where you can rest and recharge. It’s worth investing in these rooms (good beds and bedding, quality tapware, the right mix of bright and dimmable lights, and furnishings to match) as the money you spend will pay big dividends for your peace of mind and mental health.
You want your home to be your favourite place. More than just a space to rest your head when the sun goes down, it should soothe, relax, refresh and even excite you. With just a little planning, it can do all these things for you – and more.