Every wellness website and lifestyle blog will regularly publish articles and studies about how to improve your mental health. It’s become a modern obsession – and with the rise of smart devices connecting us digitally, we are more and more likely to become more physically isolated than ever; even if we engage with social media for hours every day.
Everyone is always looking for ways to be happier in their day to day lives, trying to find time in their routines to practice wellness and pursue joy. It can be a struggle, but what if we told you that there’s a very simple way to improve your mood just by inhabiting the space in which you live?
Making a few simple changes to your home, no matter where you live, is reported by many to reduce stress, increase focus and have an overall positive effect on your mental wellbeing.
In this article, we’re going to break down a few key steps you can take towards making your living space more hospitable; hopefully giving you the tools to improve your daily mood in the small ways that count. We are London’s leading interior design agency, with an impressive portfolio of satisfied customers city wide. If you have any questions about designing for good mental health or any other interior design inquiry, please don’t hesitate to contact us now so we can talk.
There are a few different but important ways that the design and layout of your space affects your mental health. You may not particularly like the space that you live in, or be perfectly happy. You could be living in your dream home with loved ones around you. Either way, there are always several ways that the space you inhabit can impact your mental and emotional wellbeing. Here are some of the most important.
Having a cluttered living space is generally seen as a negative by most people, but did you know that it’s a big factor in how you feel while you’re at home? Unwashed dishes, laundry on the furniture and floor, stacks of unorganised paper and electrical wires leading all across the floor are all symptoms of a cluttered space. All of these have shown to contribute to a low mood and even deteriorating mental health. It can feel overwhelming, especially at the end of a long work day when you’re just too tired to tidy up.
This first one is fairly simple in a lot of ways – tidy up! We don’t mean scrubbing the walls and washing the windows (though that won’t hurt), but just stacking books and paper in ways that make sense, sorting out your storage systems and taking a few hours each day to generally tidy and make the space feel neat. This comes easier to some people more than others, but most still find that a tidy living area puts them in a better headspace. Once you’ve done the laundry, tidied the surfaces, taken the garbage out and made the bed, it’s incredible how much more at ease you can feel!
This isn’t an interior design tip per se, but once these basic steps have been taken, it leaves a blank canvas upon which to develop and improve your interiors to really make you feel better on a day-to-day basis.
A big factor in how you feel at home is the presence or absence of sunlight in your space. While you may be someone who likes the dark, regular exposure to sunlight has shown to drastically increase your good moods and ultimately make you happier. Biophilic designers have studied the connection that ancient humans had with nature, explaining that our subconscious reaction to sunlight tells us that it is a good day for hunting, and that there are less predators around. These specific needs are no longer relevant to modern human beings, but the experience of living in sunny spaces still subconsciously affects us in the same way.
Sunlight is a very important part of maintaining everyday emotional wellbeing and incorporating light and brightness into your living space can help lift your mood by a considerable amount.
Start with the basics. If you live in a small space, having light coloured walls goes a long way towards making the space feel larger and less claustrophobic. Having furniture and other appliances that aren’t too dark in colour can help too, though this varies from space to space.
Consider your curtains and window areas too. Do you regularly have your blinds or curtains drawn? What effect does this have on the feel of the space? Not letting enough light into the room can negatively affect your mood, so try to plan your living area accordingly.
As well as keeping the living space tidy and minimising clutter, organisation of furniture and decoration play a huge part in our mental connection with a space. Badly positioned or out-of-place furniture, jarring decorations and mis-matched upholstery can play havoc with our internal desire for cohesion and order. Thinking about these interior design aspects in your space can give you an insight into what you might need to change in order to better enjoy your home. It doesn’t take a genius designer and it doesn’t have to be expensive, but the positive effects on your mental wellbeing can go a long way toward making you feel happier in day-to-day life.
A lot of the time it is not small spaces, low ceilings or lack of light that create a sense of claustrophobia, but the positioning of furniture. Having an open and free-flowing layout helps to create a similar headspace. Prioritising items of beauty or value in the space, while minimising clutter and removing unnecessary objects will help keep your mind clear and focus on the things you love.
Really thinking about the arrangement of the furniture is important, too. You don't have to just go with whatever arrangement your home came with. Move things around! See what works. See how you feel walking through the space. Where do you stop? Where do you spend most of your time? Which are your favourite points to look at? Take notes on all of this and use it to inform the way you order your room. Once your space is ordered to your taste, you will start to feel more at ease emotionally when you’re at home.
Whether you live in a spacious and airy house or a cramped studio apartment, it’s important to think critically about your space and optimise your interior accordingly. It’s amazing how much space you can create just by rearranging furniture, décor and other household items in places that make sense.
North Wales Interiors says that a badly arranged space can cause an underlying sense of dissatisfaction in your day to day life, affecting your mood and ultimately putting a strain on your overall emotional wellbeing. No matter the size of the space, you can always make it more liveable and better to inhabit by smartly organising the interior décor to be easier on the eyes.
You may feel like you’ve done everything you can to maximise the space in your home. You’ve gotten rid of clutter, taken steps to brighten the space and ordered your furniture and décor appropriately. What then? Well, we know that even the essentials can take up more space than you’d like. Here are some ideas to free up your home even more.
Let’s talk storage. Are your shelves and wardrobes too small to fit all your belongings? Try dividers, hanging storage and wall mounted solutions. Even an ottoman at the end of your bed can be a great place to store linen or clothes. You’d be surprised how much space you can save by thinking outside the box when it comes to storage!
Do you have hat stands, foot stools, coffee tables or other small furniture items that you seldom ever use? It might be time to pass them on to another home, sell them, or at least remove them from their place just to see how it feels.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our guide on how to curate your space for better mental health. We’ve designed countless spaces that are built for optimal mental wellbeing, and we believe everyone has the right – and the ability – to curate the interior of their own homes to make them happier.
Feel as though you’d like to get a professional on the job? Look no further. Landmass has worked with countless happy clients from all boroughs of London, and we’re always looking for ways to help you enjoy your day-to-day interiors. Contact us now to start your journey towards better mental and emotional wellbeing in your home.