For some of us putting a home together that makes us happy and, dare I say it, one that is good for our health, can be a tricky one for us to master. On the one hand, we want our homes to not only look great but we also need them to feel comfortable to live in too. Then there are, of course, the everyday practicalities and reality of how we use our home to take into consideration whether or not you live alone or have a Little House On The Prairie set up. Our homes need to work with our individual needs and as well as providing us with a warm and inviting security blanket from the outside world.
Of course, these would, and could, be easier to overcome if we didn’t have the inherent built-in factor that we nearly all of us will seek and that is the approval of others. Being presented with snapshots of interior perfection through social media channels and the press can often mislead us to decorating our homes, not for our own enjoyment but more a case of how we think we should. It’s all too easy to get swept along with the need for approval and therein lies our very first problem. It can mean that sometimes we decorate with others in mind and not necessarily for ourselves.
How To Create A Happy & Healthy Home You’ll Love
Keeping in touch with ourselves and our homes is something that even I need reminding of from time to time and it got me thinking that you might like to too. Our homes can have a huge impact on our wellbeing but there are ways we can create a happy and healthy home.
Keeping It Real & Personal
Creating a home that you love and that is a representation of you and/or your family will go a long way to bringing happiness to your lives and don’t feel you have to conform to the latest home trends either. Adding your own personality and style on your home can create a home that you love to live in rather than one that looks like it’s been put together from a lookbook rather than your own personal taste and choices.
From my own personal experience, I know it can be hard trying to buy for the home if your latest colour scheme doesn’t quite match say this year’s UltraViolet, but there are other avenues to shop. Try shopping smaller start-up businesses who tend to be more individualistic. You may have to put a little more time and effort in, but it will pay off in the long run.
TIP: Buying new isn’t always the answer, seek out charity shops, salvage yards, antique fairs to find one of a kind pieces that make your heart sing and make your homes unique to you.
It takes a lifetime to build a home and patience is key. You’ll not only save money, you’ll create a home that has longevity and unique to you. Of course, the latest trends may just be up your street, so shop away.
Take your time putting together your home. A well-considered home will bring you more happiness in the long run as you’ll connect with your surroundings more through the process of choices you make. From not only how you want it to look but also how you want your home to feel on a personal level. You’ll learn and grow to understand your tastes and style and make fewer mistakes. A prime example is buying art to fill blank walls. Learning to live with your design choices and seeking out something that you’ll love to see every day will bring you more happiness than a quick fix and save you money.
Keeping it real and personal with memorabilia. Whether it’s a framed postcard or a shell from a special holiday, happy memories of moments that you’ve encountered, are important to our wellbeing. We all love to be reminded of happy moments in our lives and having them around us in our homes connects us to our emotions in a positive way.
Keeping it real and personal also means that not matching everything in your home. Standout pieces that you may have inherited from Aunt Agnes, will not only create interest they can also be conversational points to those that visit. Upholstering chairs will bring a new lease of life and you can always put your own stamp on them with a fabric that you love.
Colour & Your Home
I really appreciate and love colour for its transformational qualities. It’s such a powerful tool to implement in your homes, not only because it’s the first thing you see when entering a room, or how it can alter the look of a space, but how it can make us feel on an emotional level. Personalising your home with colours that make you feel happy and comfortable living with are really important to our well-being.
TIP: Think about what how you want your room to feel before considering your chosen colour scheme. Feelings such as warm and cosy, restful, or invigorating are just some ideas of the kind of mood you want to set for any particular space.
Bringing Nature Inside
I know I’ve rambled on about the benefits of plants in our homes (and in case you missed it you can read here), but they really do lift and bring our homes alive with texture and colour. And we get to reap the health benefits such as lowering blood pressure and helping concentration and they’re great at cleaning the air around us. Houseplants are really pretty awesome for our physical and mental health.
If time is against you be realistic with your choice of plants. Try easy to care for plants such as succulents or cacti. Rather than putting pressure on yourself to create an indoor garden and trying keeping them all alive, keep it real. A few plants in your home will make a real difference to your well-being and your home.
Or opt for artificial/faux plants. There’s such an amazing amount of realistic ones available now and the only thing you have to worry about is where you’re going to put them.
TIP: Mix real with faux like I do as they’re great for areas of your homes that don’t receive that much sunlight or have the right growing conditions for certain types of plants.
Natural Elements – Wood
Incorporating wood into your home not only adds warmth and texture, it’s actually been proven to do wonders for your health too. Research has shown that introducing natural elements such as wood into your home is great for your well-being lowering blood pressure and reducing heart rates the physiological and psychological benefits are there to be reaped. Much like how a walk in a park or woodland, nature has an incredibly positive effect on our mental and physical health. Introducing elements such furniture, flooring will help.
If you or your family suffer from allergies or breathing related illnesses such as asthma, choose non-toxic paints like these from Lakeland Paint. Conventional paints can contain formaldehyde, heavy metals and other nasties that are known as Volatile Organic Compounds or VOCs for short. These VOCs can shockingly last up to five years in your homes. To put it into context, professional decorators are said to have a 40% chance of contracting lung cancer, according to The World Health Organisation. And then there is the cost to our environment. For manufacturers to produce one litre of paint can result in 30 litres of toxic waste!!
Keep Mess Under Control
Mess and clutter can definitely make us feel stressed especially if you have a OH or kids that generally don’t clear up after themselves.
As much as I love interiors and design, I’m also a mum and a wife and I can’t help but think of the practicalities of living in a family home. Even without a family, time is something that many of us literally run out of. Keeping mess under control by choosing storage solutions that suit you and/or your family will help.
If you can see, or more importantly your family can see where something is put away, you’ll have a greater chance of them actually doing things like hanging up their coats. Easily accessible storage solutions are perfect for busy households so look to wall hooks or stands like this one from Home Lust.
TIP: Reduce your stress levels by having storage that is easily accessible will help keep the mess to a minimum.
Be realistic and honest about how much time you have and the upkeep of any design element that you’ve chosen. Open shelving has become a popular choice especially in kitchen areas, but unless you have the time to dust and clean those shelves and everything on them, you’ll be cursing the very moment you put them up.
Getting enough sleep is paramount to our health and wellbeing so creating a bedroom that is clear from clutter and yes that includes the chair hidden under that pile of clothes will help enormously. Research has shown that fewer stimuli (mess) the better we sleep. Ensure your wardrobes are up to the job and if necessary go for built-in options that are floor to ceiling to make the use of the vertical. Or why not build your own to suit like these ones above from Scandinavian brand, Connect available from Cuckooland where you get to personalise your storage space according to your needs.
Lighting is incredibly important to our health. It affects our mood as well as our circadian rhythms. Ensuring our homes receive as much natural daylight as possible and choosing the correct type of lighting to carry out tasks is essential. Poor lighting can have a detrimental effect on our health from headaches to eyestrain.
If your homes don’t receive that much natural light, you can help by using reflective surfaces such as mirrors and gloss or metallic finishes or maybe even try using light reflective paint.
Make sure your homes receive as much natural light as possible by choosing suitable window treatments that allow light to flood in through the day but also complete darkness at night to help aid sleep. Lighting can affect our sleep-wake cycles and can have a profound effect on our mood, productivity and health. Check out my post here on the different types of window treatments to suit your spaces.
Candlelight has been proven to help us wind down and help aid sleep. Opting for scented candles also boost our well-being offering a holistic therapeutic treatment. For optimum health benefits choose candles that are made from 100% natural ingredients. You may want to check out my post on Non-Toxic Candles The Natural Choice For Your Homes
On a final note, stay true to yourself and what you love and happiness will follow……
Have a great week and thanks as always for stopping by!
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