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Home Changes That Can Promote
Positive Mental Health

By Elliot Caleira

It seems like no matter what magazine you open or television show you watch, physical health is a commonly discussed topic. However, it's not the only essential component to a happy and healthy lifestyle. Mental health is another vital aspect to your being that holds the same, if not more, weight than your physical health. If you've found that your mental health could do with some positive reinforcement, here are some easy home changes you can do.

Incorporate Greenery

One of the simplest ways to promote positive mental health is to add some greenery to your home. Start with those rooms that you're in often and work your way out from there. Greenery not only helps to purify the air inside of your home, but it will provide more positive thinking. There are many different types of plants that you can purchase to put inside of your home. Realize that each different type can play a different role in improving your mental health. The most popular plants to purchase are:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Snake Plants
  • Lilies
  • Lavender
  • Aloe Vera

Paint New Colors

Paint is one of those things that can make a world of difference in how you feel. Think about this for a moment. When you go into a hospital room, dentist office, or doctor's office, what colors do you see? The walls are likely painted with light, soft colors including blues, greens, yellows, pinks, greys, and whites. These softer and lighter colors tend to be more soothing for people. Consider this concept with your home. If you currently have rooms that are dark, it can be putting you in an unwanted low mood. Change it up by painting your rooms with lighter, softer colors as it will keep you in a more positive mood.

Improved Lighting

The light fixtures in your home can have a big effect on your mood in general. Natural lighting through the windows and doors in your home can promote peaceful relaxation. When your home is closed off and you're relying on artificial lighting, it can promote more depressed moods. While you can't always afford to cut a few new windows into the side of your home, there are other options that you can use. Opt for adding mirrors on walls opposite of windows to help brighten the natural light that comes through. When purchasing light bulbs for your fixtures, opt for softer bulbs that offer light similar to natural light. Avoid the bright and harsh bulbs and lamps around your home as they will lower moods.

Organization is Key

Having a clutter-free home promotes positive mental health. It allows you to focus on other areas of your life. When your home is cluttered, every time you walk through a room your mind comes up with things that need to be cleaned someday. One of the biggest problems when it comes to organization in a home is simply the fact that we don't have a proper place for the things we have. This results in us putting them on the counter or stacking them in the corner. Avoid this problem by having organizational shelving and other storage areas that are specifically designed for the items in your home. This will ensure that you always have a designated spot to put your things so that you can have a clutter-free home.

Modern Styling

White oak hardwood flooring can make a world of difference in how you feel inside of your home. The modern look of hardwood floors and stainless steel appliances provides a clean and sleek look. When you're dealing with old flooring that has been tinted by the sun or has parts that are peeling up, it can grind on your mind. Every time you walk through that room you'll be thinking about how you need to get to changing that but never do. With modern styling, you can ensure that you enjoy walking in each room of your home and your mind won't be bombarded with thoughts of maintenance that needs to be done.

Landscaping Pictures and Artifacts

When designing the look of your home, you should pick to decorate with things that interest you. If you love the forest, then include some landscaped pictures of the woods. If you love the beach, decorate with some seashells. Remember that it's your home and you should decorate with the items that you enjoy seeing. Don't worry about what others think. You're the one that spends the most time in your home, so make it an environment that promotes happiness inside of you.

Use the Principles of Feng Shui

We've all likely heard the term feng shui and know it has something to do with designing. However, do you really understand what it entails? Feng shui is based on a set system of Ancient Chinese laws that govern the orientation and arrangement of the flow of energy throughout a building. The concept is to follow the laws of feng shui to ensure that energy can easily flow through your home in a positive effect. While there are many specific laws of feng shui you can learn, we're only going to discuss one to keep things simple. Mirrors in your home work to expand the opportunities in your life. When placed around your home, they can make space appear bigger and, on a mental level, allow you to feel limitless.

Cozy Rugs

A rug can make all the difference in how a room looks and feels. By choosing rugs that are more textured, you can promote a more comfortable mental state. These textured rugs should be of a soft material that allows your feet to almost sink in when you're walking across the rug. When picking a rug, be sure to opt for a design that flows with the decor of the room. Keep in mind rugs are meant for comfort. Extremely elaborate designs can make a room feel busy, which is the opposite of what you're trying to accomplish. A little design can help to bring appeal to the room, but don't overdo it.

Consider the Texture of Movement

Our eyes like to see texture as it reminds us of other sensory objects. When you introduce visual imagery into your home decor, you can peak the emotional center of the brain. Textures that look like plants or moving water can create a calm and content emotion feeling. When designing any room in your home, you should first start with determining what objects will have texture. In the bedroom, it could be the headboard. In the living room, it could be the carpet. Look for textures that will evoke feelings of calmness and start the rest of your room design around these textures.

Open Space Creation

There's a reason that the open space design concept is catching on. Our brains work in a way that is specific to the environment around us. When there is a lot of open space, our brains are free to be creative and open. When we're in confined spaces, it can feel like your brain is blocked and it can be overly difficult to create new perspectives. Try to incorporate as much open space as possible in your home. This can be done by physically changing the walls of your home. It can also be done by utilizing design tactics, like mirrors, that can make a room appear much bigger than it actually is.

Aim for Soft Geometry

There's a reason that those soft, curved pillows are so soothing. They have what is known as soft geometry. More simply put, they don't have sharp corners or strictly defined edges. This can allow the brain to calm down as it's not worried about crushing into the edge of things, such as a countertop. Think about it like this for a moment. Would you be more afraid to fall into an end table that has pointy corners or one that has round corners? Consider this concept when picking out furniture, bedding, and the like for each room of your home. The less geometric you make the room, the more relaxed your mind can be.

Incorporate Soothing Elements

Part of having positive mental health is giving yourself some down time to let your mind relax. This can be done in a number of different ways. One of the simplest ways to do so is to add elements that make you feel calm. Things like aromatherapy diffusers, candles, lanterns, fountains, and other similar items can easily work to promote calmness in your mind. Think of the design elements that people use when creating an area for meditation as that will give you a good start.

Promoting positive mental health is an important part of living a fulfilled life. While it may not seem like your home has a big impact on your day to day mental health, it really does. By changing up some design elements of your home, you can better promote positive mental health for you and your family.

Elliot Caleira is a freelance writer in the self-mastery and health and wellness spaces. When he's not writing you'll find him cooking or teaching Portuguese classes. More articles by Elliot.

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