Where you spend your time plays a huge part in your mental health. When you’re at work, you can make small changes to aid in productivity and focus. When you’re at home, it should be a place for decompressing and letting go of the day’s stressors. It’s important to enjoy your home space and little changes can make a huge difference.
Clutter around us can clutter our minds. We get distracted, we feel overwhelmed, and we end up shutting down. Even if you don’t have time to de-clutter everywhere, try to focus on one room first. It could be the room you walk into at the end of the day so your first impression of home is organized. Or, it could be the room you spend the most time. Start with that space and try to clear off tables and counters. Simplify. Clean. It’ll help so much.
You can do the same with an office space. When you spend so many hours in one space, it’s easy to get a little lazy with it. Look around. Do you have papers you used for a meeting 6 months ago and haven’t touched? Put them in a folder and into a drawer. The random gift an office mate gave you for Christmas three years ago? Do you really love it, or did you put it up to show your appreciation and then forgot about it? Take it down if it doesn’t add to your workspace. Give that desk a little refresh.
Plants are incredible. They not only add to a space, but they are also wonderful air purifiers. God created plants and humans to live symbiotically. We breathe in oxygen and out carbon dioxide. Plants need carbon dioxide to live and provide us oxygen to breathe. It’s actually a beautiful relationship.
Live plants can help your respiratory health and your mental health. Nature has a huge calming effect on humans. And, caring for a plant can give back on an emotional level. Even those of you who don’t think they know how to keep a plant alive, you can do it! Just research to see what type of plant fits your lifestyle. Some require more sunlight and some don’t. Some need regular watering and others don’t. Find one that suits your personality the best!
There is something about real flowers that just lifts spirits. That’s why we give them for special occasions or when people are going through a hardship. They are colorful and happy! And, they don’t live forever, so you can change them out to something totally different when you’re tired of them! Next time you’re at the store, check out the floral department. You don’t have to buy something fancy, just pick something that puts a smile on your face when you see it. Take it home (or to work), put it in a vase, and enjoy that pop of color every time you see it.
When it comes to your home, it should feel homey the second you walk in the door. Our sense of smell plays a huge role in our brain function. When you smell certain things, they can trigger feelings and memories without us even realizing it. That’s why it’s so important to fill your home with scents that bring you comfort and happiness.
Candles can be a great option for filling the air with scents that match your moods. Just keep in mind that there are some candles that are better for you than others. Try to use natural fragrances instead of synthetic. Also, try to find ones that use soy, coconut, or beeswax instead of paraffin.
Other ways to create a welcoming scent in your house is essential oils. These can be diffused or sprayed. There is a lot of research out of there on the use of aromatherapy and mood (and health). Depending on your current headspace, you may want something more calming, something to energize, or something to focus. There is an oil for everything!
Music is similar to scent because it also triggers emotions. Some music will take you back to a middle school dance. Other songs will make you cry. And, other music will help you decompress at the end of a long day. The beauty of our in-home smart devices is that they have built in playlists and can change with a simple command. When you’re in the mood for a soft instrumental, you just need to ask Alexa to play something for that mood. If you need pick me up, ask for some music from high school or a good upbeat playlist. Sometimes just having a background melody can really change up the entire scene. Take advantage of it!
When it comes to a stress-free living space, it really comes down to making the space your own. You want it to represent your best self. While there are several tips listed above, essentially, it comes down to what helps you decompress. If it’s a certain color scheme, go for it! If it’s surrounding yourself with books, fill those shelves! Maybe a coffee station in the corner is just what you need to see when you need a little comfort. Whatever it is, take a little time to create your space.