How To Transform Your Home Into A Wellness Sanctuary
Our living spaces have an enormous effect on our mental and physical wellbeing, yet often they can be as overwhelming as the world outside.
Where in your life have you felt your most relaxed, serene and comfortable? Is that in your own home? If not then it may be time to begin to transform your living space into your very own wellness sanctuary where you can retreat and detach from the stresses of urban living and feel at your most positive and calm.
If you were to transport yourself to your perfect place, it’s likely to be somewhere in the natural world, so taking inspiration from nature to create your retreat can be a wonderful place to start. If transforming your whole home into a soothing environment feels daunting at this stage then start with just one small space then see how you can expand that new way of living into the rest of your home.
Here is our essential guide to creating soothing and uplifting spaces that enhance your wellbeing at home.
Declutter Your Possessions
One of the most negative effects on our wellbeing can be a clutter-filled and messy home. Taking your wellbeing seriously means taking some time to reduce and reorganise possessions and let go of everything you have discard. You will find that you immediately feel a sense of relief; that you can think more clearly and discover that you ‘need’ far less than you thought. Be mindful of the environment when decluttering, making sure you recycle, donate or sell anything that can be usefully reused by others.
Freshen Up With A Deep Clean
A deep clean will clear dust and toxins from your home, improving the air quality and creating positive energy for your new wellness sanctuary. Carpets, curtains and books can be real dust traps and any areas of moisture can start to grow mould. Toxic chemicals are found in many cleaning products so try to use natural cleaning products or make your own using common ingredients with natural essential oils.
We recommend Johnson Group for green cleaning in Hong Kong and this book has ideas on homemade non-toxic cleaning products.
Breathe Easier For A Positive Mindset
Open your windows up whenever possible to circulate fresh air and to stop your home feeling stuffy. Breathing fresh, clean air makes us feel less tired, promotes better sleep quality and can reduce health problems such as headaches, allergies and breathing difficulties.
Indoor air quality is often much worse inside your home than it is outside because our homes accumulate toxins from many sources such as traffic fumes, mould, furniture, paint, dust and cleaning products. If opening your windows is not possible look to bringing an air filtration system into your home, such as the IQAir.
Lighting Can Effect Your Healthy & Happiness
Natural light can be one of the most sought after, uplifting and positive influences in a home so make sure you maximize any natural light your building receives (you can read more about how to do in a previous blog here). However, the artificial lighting in your home also needs to support your natural body clock.
Circadian lighting can be used to mirror the color changes of sunlight throughout the day with cool blue light in the morning through to warm soft light in the evening, supporting our natural sleep-wake cycle. Use lamps and low lighting at different levels in the evening to create a soft feel to wind down the day. Candles can also create a relaxing and meditative ambience especially in any special relaxing area of your home. Minimise screen time and ensure the light on screens is set to an evening setting, if possible have no screen time up for an hour before bed.
Choose A Focal Point
A focal point for your new sanctuary could be something as natural and simple as a beautiful view, but if you don’t have that in your home then find an alternative. It may be art that inspires you so the focus could be a large landscape painting or a photograph of a natural place you love scaled up and framed. You could also create a gallery wall of different items, prints and family photos that create a positive or joyful energy. A focal point could also be a collection of different sized houseplants or a table or area of shelving with your most treasured possessions displayed.
Color Affects Us All
Color psychology shows us that color has a huge influence on our feelings about a space. Our mood can be greatly influenced by cool blues and greens that feel calm and relaxing, or reds and warm colors that can be stimulating and overpowering. For your wellness sanctuary we suggest neutrals and cooler colors will lend themselves well to a feelings of relaxation, light and space.
However color is a very personal choice so go with what feels right for you, you may feel most relaxed in a light cool environment or by simulating a darker, comforting cave feel.
Choose A Special Place To Relax In Peace
Having a physical, Zen space dedicated to your wellbeing, where you have the option to shut off from all the busy elements of your life is very important. If you don’t have a lot of space this could be a transformable area or just a comfy chair in one corner for quiet, thinking time.
Create a relaxing and connected area by adorning your space with your most treasured possessions, ambient lighting and candles, and make it really comfortable with cushions and throws to curl up in. You can use this area to read, nap, reflect or practice mindfulness feeling safe in your own personal refuge.
Create A Bedroom For Good Sleep
Good quality sleep is essential for feeling your best. Make sure that your bedroom is designed to be a sanctuary for sleep by decorating it in tranquil colors and invest in blackout curtains or blinds to keep out the light for deeper sleep.
Choose soft and warm lighting for bed time and invest in a mattress and bedding made from natural materials that are breathable and hypoallergenic, staying away from synthetic materials. A wake up light is a great way to start the day as it gradually wakes you from sleep by simulating the increasing light at dawn.
Create a Nature Sound Journey
Play soothing sounds in your home sanctuary, creating various playlist or soundtracks to play when you’re relaxing, sounds from nature are particularly effective such as birdsong, waves or other white noise because they don’t prompt particular thoughts. If you have voice-activated technology such as a home hub you can just ask for the suitable comforting soundscape for your mood without engaging with hand held technology.
Our busy minds can be overwhelmed with millions of thoughts and common distractions can create excuses to NOT relax and lead to a lack focus. Switch off all your unnecessary gadgets for a set time each evening, turn off the TV and any electrical devices that are not needed to avoid being drawn into screen time. Using voice activated smart home technology can be a great help in stopping distractions, as it doesn’t require physical interaction with a screen.
Connect With Nature Through Plants
Indoor plants connect with our deepest need to be in and around the natural world and are a wonderful way to counteract the negative effects of city living. They make us more productive, creative and reduce stress levels. They also improve air quality, by creating oxygen, regulating humidity and absorbing harmful chemicals. To find out more about styling your home with indoor plants take a look at this blog.
Signature Scent Your Home
Scents can have a calming or energising influence on your mood; create a sense of wellbeing by scenting your home with natural fragrances using a scented diffuser, essential oils, essences or natural scented candles. Alternatively you can put a few drops of essential oil with water into a spritzer bottle and spray into the air to freshen up a room.
Try to choose fragrances that take you back to a happy place or time you experienced evoking positive thoughts or memories. Lavender is wonderful for relaxation and peppermint, sweet orange or eucalyptus will invigorate; Frankincense and myrrh promote meditation. Make sure you aren’t using scents to mask other smells in your home such as mould.
Comfort In Natural Materials
Choose comfort when selecting sofas and chairs and carefully consider your home accessories, connecting with nature again by choosing items made from natural, sustainable materials such as wood, cork, bamboo, cotton, wool, linen and silk. Layer different textures and tones to create a cozy and comforting effect. Consider investing in fewer items but really special ones, that you feel a strong connection with, perhaps that have been fairly traded or created locally, reducing the carbon footprint of your home.
Find Space To Exercise
Even if you live in a small space, having a transformable area where you can do some exercise will really improve your wellbeing. Not only will it make you healthier but exercising at home is also free! Yoga especially can be practiced with just a mat and a space to place it, perhaps near your wellness relaxation area. Meditation cushions and yoga mats can also be bought in natural and eco materials.
Nourish Your Body
Small things that contribute to a healthy lifestyle will help you connect with your body and mind. Growing herbs and micro greens in your kitchen or in an outdoor space if you have one will bring nature to you, helping you connect with the earth. This indoor garden is a great way to add fresh herbs and salads into your diet if you have space for it. Also make sure you filter your water for fresh clean drinking water.
Spread The Good Vibes!
Now you have created your calm and soothing environment share the good vibes with friends and family, it is likely they will appreciate spending some time with you in a home where they can feel relaxed, recharged and connected too!
Which of these ideas resonate most with you? Which of them would you think to implement first? We would love to hear or see your experences of creating a wellness sanctuary in your home so please share with us on social media with the hashtag #wellnesshomesanctuary.
For more information, feel free to contact Liquid Interiors, your healthy and eco consious interior design consultants.