Your emotions and mental health are significantly influenced by your physical environment. As we continue to deal with a world that frequently appears to be far from safe and secure, having a space that lowers stress is particularly crucial.
That space, of course, should be your Waterloo Region home. However, whether you have lived in it for years, have just moved in or are still actively searching for the ideal one, that is often not the case. But what are the best ways to change that?
Home decor can make more of a difference than you might think. As Realtors we have learned a great deal from decorating and home staging professionals over the years - not to mention that Angelica herself has extensive interior design experience - about what makes a space feel warm, welcoming and yes, even calming.
With all of this in mind, here are some suggestions for creating a home that keeps you healthier and makes you happier.
Make Better Use of Calming Colours
We are psychologically strongly affected by colour. Certain hues have the ability to stir emotions, stimulate particular memories, and radically alter how we feel. For instance, powerful hues like red, which we frequently associate with passion and even rage, can evoke equally extreme emotions when used in home decor.
It's all a matter of association; for instance, we associate green and blue with the natural world, therefore when used correctly, these hues can have a relaxing impact on us. A delicate blue wall conjures up images of the sea and sunny summer days, while a deep green wall may conjure up images of jungle or forested excursions.
When it comes to calming home design, what colours are noticeably absent? Bright colours such as neon green and fire-engine red pigments for sure. Bright colours like these are thought to be at best energizing and at worst causing anxiety.
Avoiding colours that are psychologically stimulating can help to relax the mind and lessen feelings of anxiety, therefore living spaces should be painted and furnished with this in mind. It's a good idea to choose soothing, neutral colours like blue, especially in the bedroom. When applied properly, certain grayscales can also aid in our relaxation.
And an extra plus? These are all colours that home stagers make great use of too, so you may have less work to do when preparing a home for sale, should that time come.
Getting Home Lighting Right
Bright lights have the power to amplify both good and bad emotions. Our available illumination, especially artificial lighting, has a big impact on our physical and emotional wellbeing. While blue light from devices like TVs and computers is fine throughout the day, it can be harmful to our mental and physical health once the sun starts to set. When we return home from a long day at work and are trying to unwind, blue light makes us more alert, which is the last thing we need. The same is true of dazzling white lights, which are frequently found in more contemporary homes.
At the end of the day, dimming the light can promote relaxation in the body and help us make more logical, calm decisions. Where possible, choose warm lighting to help create a cozy atmosphere in your home.
Place chic lights strategically throughout a room as an alternative to overhead lighting to personalize the environment for you. There are even lamps and lightbulbs available that have variable colour temperatures that, for example, allow you to choose energizing blue light during the day and then switch to a warmer light in the evening.
Additionally, it's critical to make sure that our homes receive plenty of natural light, particularly in the winter. This aids in regulating our circadian rhythm, which enhances the quality of our sleep, elevates our sense of wellbeing, and, in certain cases, may even help to lessen the symptoms of depression.
Let More Nature In
There is a good reason why we love indoor plants so much and find environments with plants to be so appealing. Whether we realize it or not, biophilic architecture - spaces with greenery - that reconnects us to nature greatly improves our mental and physical wellbeing.
A study discovered that living in places devoid of natural elements has a detrimental impact and that indoor plants could help people feel less stressed and may even help alleviate the symptoms of health concerns like depression and anxiety. Not to mention that some plants can also help your home's indoor air quality.
Open Up Your Living Spaces
Nobody wants to live in cramped living conditions. Anyone looking to reduce anxiety is advised to create a space that is open and airy, free of clutter and dust-gathering items. Always make sure there is enough space between any accessories, wall hangings, and furniture in your home.
How can you set up your belongings to make a comfortable space? Perhaps it's time to part with a few of the possessions you've been holding onto. If you are unable to officially let go of them, consider storage options.
Decorate your rooms using things you find appealing to YOUR eye. Get rid of everything that is no longer useful or causes you anxiety! Your stress levels will gradually decrease as you store things and clear up clutter.
The Power of Personally Pleasing Imagery
Speaking of visual appeal, You can rapidly alter your mood by surrounding yourself with images or works of art that make you joyful. Your day can be greatly improved by viewing images of beautiful landscapes or close family members. Having excellent imagery in your home is a positive thing.
This is, as an aside, one of the biggest reasons that a home staging professional - and your real estate agent - will tell you to remove these images when it comes time to sell your Waterloo Region home.
Because they affect us so much personally, leaving them in place during showings will make it very hard for a potential buyer to envision the space as their own, which they must be able to do. That's how powerful personal imagery can be!
These little fixes will help you declutter your mind and cultivate a more optimistic outlook to combat those anxious periods.