Tips for a Happier, Healthier Home

Image: Clair Strong Interior Design

There’s no time like now – the season of colds and flu – to think about the ways in which we can make our homes healthier. Here are some simple tips for creating a happy, healthy home environment.

Get on board with the houseplant trend

Plants are good for your health. Extensive research has shown that houseplants reduce stress levels, improve productivity, reduce blood pressure and even help us breathe more easily. Some plants, like the peace lily and parlour palm, purify the air by filtering carbon dioxide and removing toxins. Plants in general have psychological benefits such as improved mood and attention span. To vastly improve your general wellbeing at home, surround yourself with nature.

Think about the psychology of colour

Colour has a deeply profound effect on the human mind. It can affect mood and influence behaviour. It can make you feel happy, productive, upbeat and motivated or it can make you feel angry, stressed and overwhelmed. Some studies suggest colour can even affect things like blood pressure levels and appetite.

What this all means, of course, is that you can (and should) consciously decorate your home to create a positive and healthy environment. For detailed information on the psychology of colour, including some examples, check out this blog post.

Block out the light (at night)

We all know how essential sleep is for better mental and physical health. I’ve even written about it before. One way to achieve better sleep is to block out as much light as possible. Humans are designed to sleep while it’s dark. The darker it is, the more melatonin (the sleep hormone) our body produces. We have full control of the lights inside our home, but for external light sources we don’t have control over, we need blackout curtains. They block out up to 99% of all light, including sunlight.

And a few bonus ideas…

  • Consider using cleaning products made with natural ingredients.
  • Choose low VOC paints when decorating.
  • Filter your tap water – improved taste is just one benefit.
  • Dust and vacuum frequently to eliminate allergy and asthma triggering dust mites.
  • Plant a garden – studies show that those surrounded by nature are happier.
  • Swap to soy candles.

Update your mattress every 8-10 years.

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