Between the hustle-bustle of everyday life, adulting and other daily challenges, finding ways to unwind and relax has never been more critical.
Research shows that self-care habits allow us to bounce back from stressful situations, traumatic events and tragedy. It builds resilience that strengthens our cognition and boosts our positivity and self-esteem.
A designated space for self-care at home can promote optimal mental health and comfort to better deal with difficult circumstances. There are many ways you can create a safe oasis, whether it’s a corner of your living room or a snug area in your bedroom.
1. Design a Reading Nook
Reading can be a wonderful escape from your stress and worries. That’s why creating a special book nook or home library can be the ultimate way to kick back.
If you lack a suitable window for bench seating, a comfortable chair with an ottoman to rest your feet will do just fine. Include a small table with a lamp to prevent straining your eyes if you read in the evenings.
A cup of hot tea always makes this activity even more enjoyable, while a blanket is nice to toss over your legs. You can add a small bookshelf and place some of your favorite decorative pieces on your shelves to personalize the space even more.
2. Add a Diffuser or Candles
Aromatherapy can have a positive impact on your well-being. Consider having a diffuser or scented candles when creating a space for self-care. Diffusers allow you to disperse oils into the room with natural fragrances. Common scents include eucalyptus, peppermint, citrus, tea tree and lemongrass, in addition to lavender.
You might also decide to fill your self-care area with scented candles that remind you of a favorite place or time, such as the ocean, a bakery or a happy memory from childhood.
3. Make It Cozy
One way to make a house feel more like home is to integrate soothing elements like throw blankets and pillows. You might also change the interior design with a fresh coat of paint, new furniture or a different layout.
The key to making your home cozier is to have it appeal more to your senses, both physically and emotionally. That may mean toning down your color palette with subdued hues and neutrals. Earthy, natural tones can also have a calming effect on the mind and body.
Incorporate soft materials to lay on, keep the area decluttered and clean, and surround yourself with items that enhance your comfort.
4. Keep It Quiet
Practicing self-care may mean sitting still and being quiet. Whether you meditate, stare out a window, or participate in a relaxing activity like painting or yoga, a little quiet time alone is always healthy.
Allow your self-care space to be somewhere you can disconnect from the outside world.
For example, research has linked excessive cellphone use to decreased sleep and cognitive functioning, depression and anxiety, poor eating habits, and migraines in adolescents and young adults. Consider unplugging your devices or leaving them in a different room entirely to create the perfect area for self-care.
5. Let in the Light
It would be best if you didn’t overlook lighting in your self-care area, particularly since it has several mood-boosting effects.
The proper lighting can help regulate your body, including your nervous and endocrine systems. It can also boost your melatonin levels and balance your circadian rhythm for optimal sleep.
If possible, create your self-care space near a window where you can receive ample amounts of natural lighting. Otherwise, make sure you incorporate lightbulbs that are easy on the eyes. You might also get creative and string twinkle lights for a different type of effect.
Self-Care Is a Form of Health Care
Taking care of yourself mentally and emotionally helps improve your overall health and well-being. As long as your self-care routine provides a feeling of positivity and renewal, that’s all that truly matters. Create a soothing environment in your home to enhance your practice and reap its many benefits.
Evelyn Long is a Baltimore-based writer and the editor-in-chief of Renovated. She publishes home decor advice and product roundups for readers in spaces both big and small.