Your home is your refuge – it is where you should feel relaxed and safe when life gets a little hectic and overwhelming. Now most of us are spending day in, day out in our homes, creating a home which is relaxing and enjoyable is a must.
Having a well-designed space which is filled with items you love and cherish can help to calm and relieve stress, as studies have shown that a space which is cluttered and untidy can have the opposite effect and actually impact your mood and mental health.
Certain decorating choices can help to create a sense of peace and the way that you choose to decorate a space can have a huge impact on the way you feel whilst you are in it. Creating a home which is your own personal sanctuary is vital when it comes to your mental health – your home should be where you can be yourself and feel like you are in a positive place.
Use a neutral palette
Neutral, muted tones are much easier on the eye than bright, bold colours. Whilst decorating with colour is fun and exciting, neutral spaces should have relaxing vibes, which is hard to create with bold colours.
When you decorate with light or white toned neutral colours, such as off-white, taupe, grey or white, then be sure to use plenty of texture in order to create interest in the room. Flat, white walls or smooth white furniture can easily blend together and create a boring space, so add a mixture of subtle patterns and fabrics. You could also look to add shades of warmth, such as pastel yellows or gold, to keep white from looking too clinical in the home.
Candles can warm an area
The soft glow of a candle can add a sense of ease into any space around the home, whether it be in the bedroom or the bathroom, so use them throughout the house. Not only do candles create a warming glow, especially in the evenings or on rainy days, but they also make your home smell incredible and welcoming.
You might want to use the same scent in places such as the hallway or landing, whereas the bathroom lends itself to stronger smells, such as lemon or orange. From tapers and pillars to votives and wax melts, there are plenty of different candle varieties you can use around the home and to suit different rooms – it’s just a case of mix and matching.
Make the most of lighting
Be sure to utilise a number of different lighting types around your home, such as ambient, natural and task lighting, and in different rooms. Having a bright and well-lit room is an easy way to make a room or space feel much more inviting and put together, especially in rooms which not get a lot of natural light. In darker rooms, you might want to consider adding a floor lamp, pendant lights or a desk lamp to add some more light into the room.
During the daytime, be sure to make the most out of natural light by opening the curtains or blinds and enjoying the sunlight which flows in. Then, you can also enjoy the light in the early evening as warm, soft light is cast into the room creating a gentle glow.
Add a scent to the air
One of the first things you’re likely to notice when you walk into your home is the smell. The moment you get whiff of an unpleasant odour, your mood is likely to dip a bit. Walking into a pleasant aroma is one of the quickest ways you can feel relaxed and soothed, which are all good for your wellbeing. In order to create a nice homely scent, you could bring in fresh, fragrant flowers or, as mentioned earlier, use scented candles in the rooms you use the most.
You could also try using an oil diffuser around the home so that you can create your own scent blend, such as chamomile and eucalyptus or lemon and mint, as these will help to bring a soothing, spa-like scent to your home.
Create a comfort zone
Designate a place or room in your home where relaxation is the main function. Tailor it to your choices or preferences, whether its watching television, reading or meditating. Move a comfortable armchair into your favourite nook in the house which has a view you love, or buy a big, designer sofa so that other family members feel welcome to join, too. Try to put a barrier between you and any distractions, such as a coffee table or footstool, to block out unwanted views or redirect foot traffic away from your designated comfort area.
You don’t need to use a whole room, instead just use a portion of the room or a single space – all you really need is a comfortable chair and things such as a floor lamp or side table. We all need a space to get away from it all!
Use framed photographs around the home so that when you see them, you are taken to all the pleasant places you have visited or the occasions you’ve attended, such as family weddings or trips to the seaside. By surrounding yourself with happy memories and friendly faces of family members or friends, you can add warmth to your home and space. Keep photos of your loved ones in your line of sight, or keep them easily accessible in albums around the home.
By making sure your home is both comfortable and relaxing, you will notice that your general mood and wellbeing improves in a short space of time. Your home should be your haven, a sanctuary amongst the daily stresses, rather than a place which bothers you or you don’t enjoy being in.
Natalie Wilson is a freelance health and wellness writer. She loves researching and writing about new health trends and topics, from Vitamin D benefits to Invisalign treatments. When not writing, you can find her taking long walks in the countryside with her dog or browsing her nearest bookstore. You can connect with her on Twitter @NatWilson976.