These statistics from the Global Organization for Stress paint a startling picture: In Australia, 91% of adults report feeling stressed in at least one area of their lives, while 75% of American adults report moderate to high levels of stress. The workplace is a major contributor to this, with 6 in 10 workers in “major global economies experiencing increased workplace stress”. Yet this doesn’t have to carry over into your home life. Use these tips to ensure that effective stress management begins at home.
1. Eliminate clutter
Simplify and streamline your life by removing clutter from the home. Consider the “KonMarie method” courtesy of Japanese bestselling author Marie Kondo, a philosophy which espouses removing any objects in the home which do not “spark joy”. Put out-of-season linens and clothing into an under-bed storage unit, and frequently-used objects like keys and outgoing mail in a decorative lacquered bowl or wall-mounted organiser near the door. Clean surfaces lead to a clear mind, and a tidy, peaceful home will provide a sanctuary of stillness.
2. Choose calming colours
Colour can have a remarkable impact on mood, energy levels, and even appetite; so if you’ve been feeling anxious recently it may be time for an interior design makeover. Choosing the right shades for your walls and furnishings can create a feeling of solace and comfort as soon as you walk through the front door. Light shades of blue like eggshell or crystal are frequently used in bedrooms; blue reduces tension, calms the mind, and evokes a sense of serenity. Choose a dreamy purple hue like African violet to create balance in your mind, or opt for a subtle shade of ethereal pink to conjure tranquillity.
3. Bring in the botanicals
House plants can work wonders for stress management. They not only re-oxygenate the air to purify your space, but they create a relaxing, peaceful home atmosphere. Hang delicate spider plants in windows or frame your sofa with decorative vines like philodendron and English ivy. You can also bring the outside in with hand-carved wooden figurines, a glass bowl filled with shells, or a trickling indoor pebbled fountain.
4. Devote time (and space) to your hobbies
Spending time on hobbies is a powerful stress management technique. Do you feel a sense of bliss when preparing for a dinner party with friends? Give your kitchen an upgrade with a wood-fired oven and stainless steel work stations. Are you at your most serene when working on a crossword puzzle? Assign a reclining chair and tiered side table to serve as your puzzle nook.
5. Relax with natural lighting
Honour your circadian rhythms by allowing natural light into your home. Researchers have found that environments with natural light improve productivity, while also promoting a more restful wake and sleep cycle. You can strive to create this effect by installing floor-to-ceiling windows to flood your rooms with daylight. In the evening, turn the lights down to send appropriate visual cues to your brain that it’s time to relax, using warm Edison bulbs or candlelight.
Stress is an issue that can have a striking impact on both your physical and mental wellbeing. By designing your home with elements that make you happy and eliminating the excess, you’ll transform it into the perfect worry-free oasis.