Whether it is working from home through the pandemic or escaping from the cold winter months, it is safe to say that many of us have been cooped up indoors in the same space for weeks on end now. It can understandably lead to bad moods, depression, anxiety, or lack of productivity. Or you can simply be craving a change in scenery. The act of caring for your space and creating a haven that makes you feel calm, relaxed, and secure is a form of self-care itself. Changing your surroundings and creating a positive environment can offer a fresh perspective, improve productivity, provide a welcome distraction from stress and anxiety, and allow you to exercise some control over certain aspects of your life. Here are some ways to easily spruce up your home to create a wholesome space that nurtures your mental and physical wellbeing:
- Revamp your living space – Whether you are a fan of bold, vibrant colors or soothing pastels, adding a fresh coat of paint to your walls, or getting new accents like a rug, cushions or throws can instantly change the look and feel of your home. You can rearrange your furniture for a new look and experiment with colors, patterns, and textures until you find the perfect combination that reflects your personality and tastes, suits your needs, and most importantly, makes you feel relaxed and secure. And the best part is that you can enjoy the fruits of your labor immediately without needing to spend a fortune.
- Designate spaces for activities and relaxation – One of the biggest challenges of the past year was acclimating to the dynamics of working from home, especially when sharing the space with the whole family. Dining tables and kitchen counters have been doubling as workstations or virtual classrooms and the sanctity of our homes have been invaded by office-related paraphernalia. To maintain a healthy work-life balance, it is important to establish clear boundaries between your home and office life wherever possible. This can mean setting up your home office in a separate room or dedicating a specific section or corner of your home for office work. Conversely, you could designate a particular space as a work-free zone, to relax and unwind or spend time with the family. For smaller homes where space is a premium, this physical boundary can be reinforced by maintaining strict office-hours – once the workday is done, the shared space is only to be used for leisure activities.
- Declutter – You don’t always have to wait for warmer weather for “spring cleaning” – you can give your home a thorough purge any time of the year. Just the act of decluttering can be therapeutic – get rid of items that you no longer need or those that you associate with unpleasant memories and experiences. For items that you don’t want to display but would prefer to hold on to, consider tucking them away in decorative storage boxes that complement your decor. Decluttering can make your home feel more spacious and an organized space can help minimize the chaos from our blended work and home lives, reduce stress and anxiety, and optimize productivity.
- Add plants to your home – Introduce natural beauty into your home by adding a few plants in sunlit corners and shelves. You can select from a large variety of house plants (pothos, philodendrons, and succulents to name a few) which are easy to care for (can tolerate some shade and a few missed watering sessions) and add the perfect pop of life and color to your home. In addition to their aesthetics and air-purifying properties, the simple act of caring for your plants and watching them flourish can add joy and positivity to your life.
- Add personal touches – Being separated from family and friends, living under a constant cloud of fear and uncertainty, and being restricted from socializing, traveling, and pursuing life goals have perhaps been some of the biggest challenges from the past year. Try to counter that negativity by surrounding yourself with things that remind you of good times and all that you are grateful for. Add photographs of loved ones and your favorite memories, display souvenirs from your travels, showcase objects that have sentimental value or add artistic calligraphy of your favorite motivational quotes. Personal, meaningful touches like that add warmth and happiness, and can make any space feel more homely.