Our homes are more than just a physical structure - they provide shelter, warmth and are where we raise our families, welcome friends and is our own personal space where we can unwind.
With the average person spending around 90% of their time indoors, and a notable percentage of this spent in our homes, it makes sense that our home affects our overall wellbeing.
Research has proven that our housing situation directly impacts on our health, but this is something which is often overlooked and goes unnoticed.
Sure, we all know the importance of hygiene and cleaning around the home, so what is it about our homes which impacts on our health?
It’s the Small Things
Whilst you may not notice them, it can be the small things around your home which can have the biggest impact on our health. Light bulbs, decor colors and even your bedding choice all have an impact on how healthy your home really is.
When it comes to getting your home in a healthy state, often the first steps are the easiest.
Changing your light bulbs can have a huge and almost impact on your health. Light bulbs have actually been linked to eye strain, migraines, sleep problems and even depression and is something which takes just seconds to change. Switching from fluorescent to LED light bulbs can make a huge difference to your health.
Changing the colors in your home will also impact on your health, but particularly mental health. Color psychology is something which deals with how different colors can have an impact on your mood. Yellow and red tend to stimulate our senses and encourage activity, whereas blue promotes intelligence and calm. Painting your home with color psychology in mind can change the way each room impacts on your mental wellbeing.
Clutter and Organization
Inside your home, disorganization and clutter can have a huge impact on your emotions. Research has shown that the average home has 300,000 items inside, with 1 in 10 of us renting external storage to store larger or unwanted items. In other words, clutter proves to be a big issue and one which has a direct impact on our mental health.
Clutter is often a source of stress and, whether you realize it or not, it is both mentally and physically exhausting dealing with this clutter and the baggage which it adds to our lives. If you reduce the amount of clutter which is present in your home, and develop a system for organizing items which you do have, you then get the upper hand and enjoy a better sense of stability and peace.
If you work at home and there is clutter and junk in your direct eye line, you will subconsciously be distracted. If you sleep in a cluttered room, your sleep will be disrupted and your health may even be affected by the dust which is produced. Decluttering and reorganizing your home may be a big task, but it is one which comes with so many benefits.
Creating a Relaxing Space
When it comes to our homes, a lot of us get wrapped up in creating the perfect “Instagram” home, where nothing is out of place or unkempt. However, this also has an impact on our health in that it creates unnatural and unmanageable habits which can, in turn, affect our mental health.
It is important that your home is as welcoming and relaxing as possible, so that at the end of the day, you can just come home and unwind. This doesn’t mean coming home and cleaning or carrying out DIY tasks because you feel as though you should.
Instead, focus on creating a space or a room which is the ultimate relaxing space for you and your family. Whether it be the choice of furniture, from large plump sofas to luxury velvet furniture, or adding scented candles, it is important that when you are in this space, you are away from other distractions so that you can truly relax.
Impact Your Behavior
Research has shown that the space we are in has an impact on our behaviors. For example, if we walk into a messy hallway, with shoes and bags laying around, then we also feel the sense to do the same. If there is clutter on the kitchen side then, without even thinking about it, we will do the same and dump stuff there.
If you struggle to keep on top of housework or find it too overwhelming, then one of the first things you should do is look at your behavior. There is no point spending hours cleaning, only for it to be a mess the next day, but there is also a risk with cleaning less frequently as it is unhygienic.
Instead, focus on the behavior which is being shown and displayed in your home. If keys and bits and bobs are dumped on the hallway sideboard, then add a statement bowl or “bit box” where you can instead put stuff.
If you notice coats and jackets being hung up in random places around the home, like on the bannister, then add pegs. If your kitchen is cluttered, look at investing in hidden storage solutions. This way, you are easily addressing the issues, without too much work and becoming overwhelmed.