Our environment plays a significant role in our physical and mental health, and we're spending more time than ever at home these days.
here's never been a better time to consider whether your home supports your wellbeing, so here are 8 ways to transform your home into a health and happiness haven!
Declutter and embrace open spaces
“Clutter is caused by a failure to return things to where they belong.”
– Marie Kondo.
It’s a known fact: clutter increases stress. On the other hand, a clear space is ideal for cultivating a calm and clear mind. An ordered and tidy home also sets us up to make healthier choices throughout the day.
To truly declutter your home, every item in your home needs a place where it belongs. If an item has no logical place to go, then it’s time to carefully consider whether it still belongs in your home.
Decluttering tip: Make your bed every morning. Making this quick and easy task part of your morning routine will have a positive impact on your health and happiness.
Studies have proven that houseplants are good for your physical, emotional and psychological health
Use plants as décor
Nature plays a vital role in health and healing, but it’s not always possible to be outside. The ancient Chinese practice of Feng Shui offers a solution to this predicament by strategically placing plants in specific spaces to reduce psychological stress.
Studies have proven that houseplants are good for your physical, emotional and psychological health. Not only do indoor plants lower your stress and add colour and life to your space, but they also improve air quality, absorb noise, reduce dust, lower blood pressure, and even help with focus, memory, and mood.
Humans are diurnal, which means we’re biologically optimised for activity during the day and sleep during the night. As such, we rely on exposure to sunlight for our bodies to produce and regulate the hormones responsible for putting us to sleep and waking us up. Like plants, natural light is inherently invigorating, so let light in wherever possible to support your circadian rhythm.
Opt for dim, ambient lighting in the evening to keep your home relatively dark after the sun goes down. Unlike bright ceiling lights, fairy lights and lamps won’t inhibit the production of melatonin needed for healthy sleep cycles.
Natural light tip: Use strategically placed mirrors to reflect the sunlight, so it bounces more brightly throughout each room.
Make space for movement
Living with less furniture can be great for your overall health, but have you ever considered that your armchair may be holding you back from your fitness goals? Dedicating an open space to movement is an excellent idea if you value fitness and want to move more at home.
If there’s somewhere you hang up your skipping rope and keep your yoga mat rolled out, then you’ll be more likely to move your body and stay fit from the comfort of your home.
Devote space to mindfulness
Like movement, mindfulness can be enhanced with a dedicated space for self-care, journaling and meditation. Set aside a peaceful area in your home that you can retreat to whenever you feel tired, overwhelmed or stressed out. This is where you keep your journal, some calming incense or essential oils, and anything that helps you feel comfortable, grounded and connected to yourself.
Separate work and relaxation
Do you ever end up working in the place you’re supposed to relax in? Working from home can improve your work-life balance, but only if you can close the door on your workspace when it’s time to unwind. Dedicate a specific area for work and avoid bringing any non-work activities into this space.
Good posture has many health benefits, including better circulation and digestion, increased energy, fewer headaches and back pain, and improved core strength. If you work or study at home, you can avoid the dangers of sitting too much by replacing your office chair with a kneeling chair or a standing desk.
The colours in your bedroom can affect the quality of your sleep
Optimise your bedroom for sleep
Crucial to our immune function, cognition, hormonal balance and exercise recovery, sleeping well is possibly the most fundamental way to improve your overall physical and mental health. First and foremost, a serene sleep depends on a clean and clutter-free space. Since blue light suppresses melatonin, TVs and other electronics should be the first items removed from the bedroom.
Secondly, the colours in your bedroom can affect the quality of your sleep. Not only do colours have an impact on your mood and emotions, but they can also influence your blood pressure, metabolism, and other physiological factors.
According to colour psychology, cool colours and neutral shades are ideal for the bedroom. Avoid too many patterns and bright, busy prints because these can overstimulate your brain while you’re getting ready for bed.
Hang art and photos on your walls
One of the easiest ways to make your home a happiness haven is to surround yourself with images that bring you joy, inspiration and gratitude. Rather than storing all your happiest memories on your phone, get your favourite shots printed and framed to turn your home into a gallery of meaningful moments.
Spend some time searching for art that not only makes you feel good and reflects your personality but also has the ideal dimensions, colours and themes for your space. There’s also an art to hanging art, so it pays to do some research and get some inspiration before you begin.
Before you get started on your home transformation
It’s important to first reflect on the current state of your home and get clear on what a 'health and happiness haven' means to you. Journalling is a great way to do this, so grab a pen and paper and ask yourself the following questions:
- How does each room in my home make me feel?
- Does my home reflect my values, needs, and interests?
- What isn’t working?
- What can I easily change?