We’ve all fallen out of love with our homes, leafed through interior magazines and felt inadequate or wished our home looked like someone else’s social media posts. We may know in our heart that our homes should be about what makes us happy, not someone else, but if your surroundings don’t make you feel at home, it’s time to act.
Home should be our sanctuary, our place to retreat from the world, to rest, have fun with our loved ones and to relax. It’s easy to put off building a happier home until we have more time or money, but it doesn’t need to take much of either to create a happy space, and many of today’s suggestions are completely free, or cheap.
It takes no time at all and it’s free to build a playlist on Spotify. Upbeat music has a positive effect on our wellbeing. In 2009 Bradt & Dileo reviewed 23 studies into music involving almost 1,500 people, they found music helped to reduce blood pressure, heart rate and anxiety.
Light a scented candle
Light a scented candle, or burn some oil and with a little research you can even tune them into your mood. Rosemary has been shown to boost brain power, Lavender calms, freshly cut grass is even to prevent mental decline with age, citrus is a great stress buster, jasmine combats sadness and vanilla relaxes.
Print out an inspiring mantra
Positive words make a real difference to our daily lives and can really lift us. Mantras are the repetition of words and phrases of special significance, and can be said either out loud or internally. The bathroom mirror, bedside table, fridge, hallway are great places to send nurturing messages to yourself.
Print some photos
Looking back at our holidays has been proven to make us happier – limit yourself to maybe just picking 10 at first so the task doesn’t feel overwhelming. Choose a multi aperture frame, to make hanging them a breeze.
Put the timer on and declutter
Clutter doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Use a timer and tackle an area that is holding you back, just 20 minutes could really make an impact. Is the washing pile overflowing? Is your office paperwork piling up? Do the kids need a space to do homework? Do you need a space to relax without looking at clutter? Is the hallway table disappearing? It never takes as long as you think and you will get the time back over and over in increased productivity and happiness.
Set yourself the challenge of finding 10 things that need to go to charity and bagging them up. giving makes us happier and clutter makes us unhappy. Just don’t bring too many things back from the charity shop, my weakness, but 10 out, one in is a good rule!
Change the routine
Get the whole household involved and create a routine that helps you all keep on top of cleaning, tidying, washing.
Brainstorm the solution
Once you’ve tackled a tricky area, think about what would make it work better, do you need something to store items that accumulate? A new office system? A homework station? A blackboard for daily reminders? I am on the hunt for the perfect chalkboard for daily family life reminders.
Cheap and Cheerful fixes
A quick fire and inexpensive way to inject some large scale but affordable happiness is to invest in a new throw, cushions, shower curtain or duvet cover. I love this shower curtain, it gets me thinking!
Inject some colour
Colour is very personal, and we are drawn to our favourites, but it is worth questioning whether colours are meeting our emotional needs too! On a very basic level green brings all round balance, blue calms but can be cold and depressing to some, yellow brings wisdom and intellectual stimulation, red and orange are more powerful stimulants and bring warmth, purple brings calm and relaxation.
Posters, wall art and decorations are a quick way to inject a new colour and mood to a room. Check out Pinterest for some creative ideas to make your own, or use cheap frames to frame kids’ art work.