Something that has been magnified for many of us during quarantine is how we feel in our homes. Given that we are spending way more time in our homes, while living in an uncertain and often scary reality, feeling "at home" in our homes is all the more important. Creating a physical environment that supports our physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing is becoming a priority that many didn't know they needed.
I often receive reactions of surprise when I tell people that I moved during quarantine. It was a decision I made close to the beginning of 2020, before the coronavirus was anywhere near most of our awareness, particularly in the U.S. Luckily the move went without a hitch, and it turned out to be the best thing that could have happened for my peace of mind and happiness during this time.
First of all, I moved from an apartment in which much of the natural light was blocked by a building directly across the street to one that is flooded with unobstructed light all day. That alone was worth the hassle of moving, because it is so much easier for me to get out of bed in the morning and be energized during the day, with natural light flooding in my window. Second, keeping my anxious mind busy with packing, unpacking, and setting up my new home was a great way for me to expend my anxious energy and move my body.
And third, it was the first time that I really put time and care into decorating. I have always admired great design, but as an apartment renter I didn't feel motivated to put a lot of work into a space that wasn't truly mine. But with all of the time I am not spending in an office, co-working space, traveling, out with friends, I became obsessed with creating a home space that made me feel calm, uplifted, and at ease during a time when I often felt the opposite. Spending the last month on this home project has been an incredibly rewarding way for me to explore untapped creativity.
Creating your zen den
Here are a few things I’ve learned about creating a home that supports my wellbeing (and this can be applied after quarantine).
Keep it organized and clutter-free. The practice of putting items back in their place after using them, quickly tidying up any parts of your home at the end of the day, and organizing your belongings are great habits to keep your clutter to a minimum. This gives an added sense of ease, peace, and mental clarity as you work and move through your home during the day.
Engage your senses to create a feel-good environment. Essential oils, candles, incense, and other fragrances have the power to calm and uplift us. Appeal to your sense of touch with cozy textiles or fabrics. Consider feng shui furniture arrangements. Play with lighting, color and décor that is pleasing to your eye. Speaking of décor…
Express yourself! Decorate your space in a way that expresses your who you are, your creativity, and makes you feel joyful whenever you look at it. You can give a space your personal flair on any budget using whatever items or materials show off your unique style.
Fill your kitchen with nutritious and delicious meals, beverages and snacks that satiate and satisfy you. Take pleasure in your food and have what you need to feel nourished, happy and strong.
Your home is your sanctuary. Create the home that supports all that you do to live healthy and well.