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Easy ways to make your home more mindful
Posted on February 24 2023,
At Zhoosh, we talk about mindfulness a lot. It’s the driving force behind our company, a conscious effort to help others enjoy their space and feel safe and relaxed at home.
It’s not just about good-looking interiors: feeling safe and secure at home is vital to our self-esteem. As mental health charity Head Space explains: “When we feel safe, we find it easier to relax, do all the things that comfort us, and focus on the work or study we need to do to help ensure our stability.”
But what exactly, does this involve? How can we make our homes more mindful, particularly if budgets are tight?
The right colours in your home can have a huge impact on your state of mind. The easiest place to start with this is the walls. Our paints are all calm, earthy and inspired by nature, to provide a subminimal soothing backdrop, whatever your taste. A quick lick of paint can completely change a room and is a relatively cost-effective way to update things. The way colours are used in different areas can also be used to help lift a mood, drawing the eyes towards windows and away from darker corners.
Plants don’t just look good, they are good for us - both physically and mentally. They help reduce pollutants and improve the air quality within a home, being able to remove almost 90% of air toxins in 24 hours. They can also contribute towards people’s feelings. MIND UK advises that spending time in green spaces or around nature can improve a person’s mood, reduce stress and improve confidence. So while artificial plants are easier to look after, it’s worth investing in just a couple of real houseplants. They are a pleasure to care for and a quick and easy way to bring life to a room and lift your mood.
Your home should be a reflection of you. So whatever you love, make sure that shows in your living spaces. If you love travel, have images of other places and your own holidays on display. If your family or friends bring you joy, have their pictures on show. Update them regularly, don’t let them sit idle and become backgrounds. Move them around, swap them into different frames, print off new images regularly as changes will attract the eye.
Make the most of any natural light you have. Arrange your room around the windows, try not to cover them in heavy drapes or furniture. If you don’t have an abundance of natural light, create lighting that imitates it. Downward spotlights are great at flooding a room with brightness, but they can feel a little harsh. Mix it up with lamps in the darker corners, wall lights and even hanging pendant lights to create warmth and cosiness.
Art is very personal. That’s the beauty of it. It inspires conversation, it evokes memories and it stirs emotions. There are lots of prints available that provide mindful, uplifting messages, but visual art is great too. And it doesn’t have to stay on the wall: art includes sculptures, so do consider your use of ornaments. Move them around from time to time, change around your wall art. Look at it afresh in a new light and if possible, invest in new pieces from time to time.
Feng Shui is the ancient Chinese practice of arranging your living spaces to create balance in the natural world. It’s complex, but there are a few simple tricks to follow to create a naturally soothing, balanced interior. A decluttered entrance comes first. Then consider the commanding position - every room has a central commanding item: the chair, the bed, the desk, the oven. If possible, these should be opposite and facing the door, ideally at a diagonal. Vertical shapes - tall lamps, long pictures, narrow bookshelves – all provide positive balance to lower furniture such as sofas and tables and clear walkways without obstacles provide a feeling of flow.
You may live alone, but if you share your home with others, it’s important to respect everyone’s different needs and creating private as well as shared spaces helps with this. If you don’t have the space for individual bedrooms then creating cosy reading corners, organised play spaces and zoned home offices can help. The boundaries may get blurred – by design, life can be disorganised! – but by highlighting these areas within a home, belongings can be kept in the right area and prevent mess that can lead to stress.
Mindfulness is about being present and engaging in the moment. It is about recognising and appreciating how you feel in the space around you, so if possible, take the time this January to organise that space. Give a room a new coat of paint, tidy your hallway, invest in a little art or buy a new plant – these are all quick and cost-effective ways to bring more mindfulness into your home.