Your home is the place where you can return after a long day’s work to rest and recuperate. However, sometimes the home just ends up becoming another place for work—adding to stress and fatigue you might already be feeling—and draining your last dregs of energy. This is even more likely today, where the current state of affairs has many of us working and learning from home. While that doesn’t exactly make it a stress-free home, it also doesn’t make it impossible; there are still ways to make your home more peaceful.
Your home should ideally create a tranquil atmosphere to help you recharge and de-stress after your day. This makes it all the more important to set up a peaceful home environment to naturally remedy residual tension and stress from the outside world. Here are ways to do just that.
Channel your favorite places to relax. One way to create a peaceful place in the home is to incorporate elements from your favorite relaxation spots. This doesn’t just have to be tangible—from arranging a room to mimic another, painting a wall the same colors, or placing plants and photos from there in your space, you can create your own version of that place.
Go green and blue. We have a blog post on incorporating a green color palette into your home; these methods work for blue as well, since both colors do their part in creating a soothing atmosphere that can change a room from firing to relaxing. From adding small things like artwork to big things like changing furniture colors, these methods can affect the mood of the room without changing too much. Pick and choose which ideas might be most practical for you.
Create distraction/tech-free zones. While there’s nothing wrong with working from home or checking your socials, it can be good to exercise restraint when you get home, at least in certain areas or at specific times. Some examples would be enforcing no phones at the dinner table or no TV in a sitting room.
As it currently stands, this can be even harder than usual for many to do. Working and/or learning from home means we inherently need technology present at inopportune times and places. However, it’s still possible to combat this by designating areas and times that technology is simply not allowed. Part of establishing peace is your mentality—having work or school-related tech in a bedroom or play area can increase our anxiety without even entering the room.
Consider setting up a meditation area. This can be used for a moment of reflection and metacognition, yoga, or even some of your favorite de-stressing activities and hobbies. Painting, playing music, crafting, and the likes can be done here in a space designed for helping you relax. In line with that, resist any urges to bring in unrelated or stressful activities like work when taking the time out to spend here.
Listen to music. While it can be relaxing for some, it’s less about listening to your favorite heavy metal band and more about listening to something that will be calming for your mind and body. This can also mean ambient sounds like waves or waterfalls.
Utilize scents. Aromatherapy is a great way to help yourself feel more at ease. Use candles, incense, or other scented items to add to your serene environment. Just be mindful of what you use or where you use it if you have pets or kids.
Declutter your spaces. Seeing mail, paperwork, toys, or other messes can immediately raise stress levels. Ensure your home is clutter-free by having documents and mail put away to be sorted at a specific time. Enforce rules about where your kids can play with toys and make sure they know to put them away when not in use.
Place plants in all rooms. Apart from adding a touch of green and adding a calming element, many plants can improve air quality and circulation, making them the perfect partner to a peaceful home. Be mindful of plant species if you have pets, and make certain they’re inaccessible.
Surround yourself with calming reminders. If you can’t set up entire areas of your home to be a haven of peace, try adding elements of peace to every area. Place a souvenir from that relaxing vacation getaway you came back from on the counter. Use relaxing stones as decoration. Set up artwork that literally tells you to “relax” or “breathe.”
Understand the importance of natural light. It’s soothing and gentler on the eyes than artificial lighting, and changes naturally as the day continues. If you’re doing something on your computer or other piece of tech, see if it has a night mode or night shift. It mimics softer, natural light and puts less stress on your eyes.
Don’t be afraid to rearrange or replace. It’s entirely possible that the rooms of your house aren’t set up to be a utopia of relaxation. Redistribute furniture around your room to make it more efficient; an example would be shifting a chair to beside a window to allow you to read using natural light. If you like to unwind while sitting in a chair, but find the chair to be uncomfortable, it might be best to replace it. Sometimes though, our relaxing experience comes from memories as well, so don’t feel pressure to get rid of something with sentimental value.
Create a better sleeping environment. Don’t bring your work into your bedroom. Lack of this boundary is one of the reasons many people sleep poorly. Consider changing your thermostat and humidifier settings. Ideal temperature for sleep is said to be between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit, with 30 to 40 percent humidity. Invest in blackout curtains and dimmer switches. While natural light goes a long way in adding tranquility to a home, harsh sunlight in the morning could negatively impact the restfulness of your sleep. Along the same vein, a dimmer on your lights will create the same effect that natural light goes through as the day nears its end. Finally, it might be good to switch to hypoallergenic sheets, especially if you have allergies. This small step can make or break your ability to stay asleep throughout the night, and affect your overall stress levels.
Do you have specific ways to keep your house feeling peaceful and stress-free? Let us know in the comments.