Tips for creating a calm home
We take a look at the subtle impacts of our home surroundings on mental health, and some simple ways of creating a space where you can fully unwind.
Taking place on 10th October each year, World Mental Health Day is an occasion to increase action to address mental health, talk about mental health in general including with our loved ones, and to take the time to think about our own wellbeing.
While external factors can make the world seem like an increasingly stressful place, our homes provide a sanctuary where we can have more control over our surroundings. Whether we’re conscious of it or not, homes have a profound impact on our wellness and mood – they offer comfort, security and a sense of familiarity.
In recent years we’ve seen more focus on using our interiors to influence our mood, with the Danish concept of hygge and the ‘dopamine décor’ trend gaining popularity. As with anything, however, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. So, we’ve put together some easy tips for creating a sense of calmness in your home – whatever that looks like for you.
The immaculate homes we see on Instagram can mislead us into thinking that it’s attainable for every room in your house to be perfectly curated and zen. For most of us that’s just not realistic, but don’t be discouraged. Choose one area in your home to be your dedicated ‘calm space’. It could be your bedroom, a cosy corner of the living room, or anywhere that’s unused and requiring a bit of love. Giving yourself just one space where you can escape, relax and feel calm can have a huge impact on your mental health, especially if it’s a place that’s relatively free from technology and screens.
Colour yourself calm
Substantial research has proved that colour had a definite impact on our mood, and using colour to create a feeling of calmness is no exception. The question of which colours we find most calming is totally subjective. While the white and elegant ashen tones of a minimalist Scandi home might be relaxing to many, others might feel comforted in darker, more intimate spaces, surrounded by familiar possessions. Generally, more muted-toned colours have a calming effect, but this could be anything from a soft linen white to a soothing sage or shadowy petrol blue. If you don’t want to go so far as to paint the walls, you can build up a palette using large throws, cushions and wall prints in your chosen colours.
Easy on the eyes
As with colour, light can significantly influence our emotions. When it comes to mental health and wellness, natural light is unrivalled. If you can’t easily maximise the natural light in your home, bulbs in daylight white can have the same reviving effect as a bright day, helping you feel refreshed. When it’s time to wind down, a dimmed warm white light is ideal for encouraging relaxation. Similar to the glow of firelight, it naturally makes us feel cosy and secure.
Soothe the senses
To really feel calm and nurtured, it’s important to engage all the senses. There’s a mind-boggling array of candles, diffusers and essential oils that aim to help relaxation, but if you feel spoilt for choice then lavender is always a good bet. Used for hundreds of years in scented products, the floral, herbal scent is known for its ability to reduce anxiety and promote sleep. Other popular scents for relaxation include bergamot, rosemary and ylang ylang, or you could choose a scent that’s attached to happy memories – maybe cinnamon, or sea breeze.
Room to breathe
Finally, and perhaps most challenging, decluttering your space is a great way to instantly feel relieved and relaxed – it’s been proven that people who feel their homes are cluttered have higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Decluttering doesn’t have to mean minimal. Looking around your room, there should be nothing visible that doesn’t serve a purpose or make you happy. Everything else can be tidied away in cupboards or wardrobes, kept in attractive storage baskets or containers, rehomed or recycled.
We are committed to making a difference. Charles Church has signed the Building Mental Health charter to raise awareness and improve mental health in the home building industry. #WorldMentalHealthDay
You can find out more about World Mental Health Day at mentalhealth,org.uk. If you or or someone you know is struggling with mental health, below is a list of charities and organisations offering support and information.
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