How your home can help improve your state of mind
Mental Health Awareness Week is on the horizon this month and we wanted to focus on what small changes you can make to help your home become your sanctuary.
Your place should be your safe space; somewhere your state of mind is settled and you feel comfortable. Our homes often reflect our mental state, so looking after your pad can help to nurture your physical health too.
We spend hours in our homes – eating, sleeping, socialising, relaxing, exercising, working, and much more besides. So maintaining a healthy environment for all this activity is important for the well-being of all occupants. Read on to discover eight simple ways to improve your home - and your mental health.
Clean up your act
Keeping a clean and germ-free home is beneficial not only for your physical health and state of mind, it’s also aesthetically pleasing. If you, or anyone you live with suffers from allergies, asthma, or other respiratory complaints, regular cleaning, and disinfecting surfaces will help reduce dust and potential allergens.
Maintain good air quality
Indoor air quality is essential to your physical health, so it’s important to maintain good air quality in your home. Make sure you have plenty of air flow throughout your house. Whenever possible help the ventilation by opening windows and doors and letting in fresh air. If you live in an area with high levels of pollution, consider using air purifiers or dehumidifiers to help enhance your air quality and state of mind.
Houseplants bring many health benefits. Not only do they look great, they also improve air quality, and studies show that they also help reduce blood pressure, and stress levels and improve your mood.
Certain plants, such as spider plants and peace lilies are, apparently, particularly effective at removing toxins from the air. So, adding plants in a room not only improves air quality but also adds a touch of nature and beauty to your healthy home.
Natural light is essential to our health and wellbeing; exposure to natural light increases our natural levels of vitamin D which help with our general state of mind and, in particular, certain psychological conditions such as depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Healthy vitamin D levels can also boost your immune system, prevent bone loss and alleviate asthma symptoms.
Increasing the amount of light in your home can be simple to do. From keeping blinds and curtains open to removing net curtains or other light-blocking obstacles will make a difference. Another great trick is to bounce light around your rooms using mirrors positioned opposite natural light sources. Opting for lighter wall and floor colours can also dramatically improve internal light levels and make rooms feel more spacious too.
De-cluttering can help you de-stress
Clutter can make your home feel crowded and even overwhelming. Regular clear outs will help to reduce clutter and allow you to organise your belongings much more effectively. Once in the mindset of getting rid of items you don’t need or use, it’ll be much easier for you to find a designated place for everything that you use regularly.
Choose non-toxic products
Many household cleaners, paints, and other products contain harmful chemicals that can be toxic to your health. Choose non-toxic products whenever possible to reduce your exposure to these harmful chemicals. Look for products labeled as 'green' or 'natural' to ensure you're choosing safe products in your bid for a healthy home.
Eat at the table
Gathering the family around the dinner table can make mundane mealtimes feel like special occasions. And there are health benefits from sitting down together too.
Sharing mealtimes has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health – it encourages conversation, whilst providing the opportunity to discuss any worries or concerns encountered during the day.
Family mealtimes are a great way for young children to develop social skills. And from an anatomical perspective, eating at the table also helps digestion as we tend to have an improved posture, plus we usually eat more slowly when we’re talking to others.
However, with most families out for long periods of the day and busy schedules to contend with, how do you set about making eating at the table a habit in your home?
A good place to start is to ensure your dining furniture is up to the job - comfortable chairs and enough space at the table will go a long way toward making mealtimes enjoyable. Planning in advance is also key, both in regard to what you’ll eat and when. Set aside a day a week that works for everyone, and plan meals that you know the whole family will enjoy.
Pictured above is our best-selling Mia table and chair set. Available in a choice of a single or double extending table, with 4 or 6 chairs respectively.
Make sure your home is safe
A healthy home is also a safe home. Make sure your home is free from hazards that can cause accidents or injuries. Install smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors and keep fire extinguishers to hand. Make sure your home is well-lit and that stairways are always free from clutter.
Creating a healthy home involves a combination of factors, including cleanliness, good air quality, non-toxic products, plenty of natural light and, of course, safety. By following these tips, you can enhance the aesthetics of your home whilst also considerably improving the healthiness of your home and the positive effects these small actions can have on your state of mind.