What makes a living space healthy? 

We all have busy schedules, and many of us don’t pay attention to the space around us. After a long day at work most of us crave a comfortable and comforting environment to go home to.  That environment can be hard to come by if we start to neglect our surroundings. It’s simple – a pleasant environment creates a positive energy and our environment affects us physically and mentally. 

We take care of ourselves by eating a healthy diet, getting enough exercise, sleep, and so on.  We also need to be mindful of the space around us. The place where we spend the most time contributes greatly to our wellbeing but where to start?  Thankfully, simple changes can make a big difference over time. 

Photo by Mark McCammon

Here are some ideas to get you started:

1.  Keep Your House Organized

Why do you instantly feel better when you make your bed in the morning? When your outward environment feels orderly a sense of satisfaction follows, and making your bed is part of that. It sets a tone for the rest of the day, and the sense of accomplishment that comes with it helps to set us up for success at the beginning of our day. 

Simple things such as keeping our pantries, closets, and library orderly can help to reduce stress and improve focus and productivity because we don’t have to go searching for missing items. All of this has a positive impact on us mentally and emotionally. 

2. Let the Light In.

Natural light has been shown to affect a person’s mood.  Why not make use of it? Let the morning light in when you first wake up. You will instantly feel energized and ready for the day. 

At night, be sure to have at least one lamp or source of light in each room. A house filled with light can do wonders for your wellbeing. It can boost your energy, and help reduce stress and fatigue. 

3.  Bring in Some Greenery.

Plants in the house can help create a healthy living space. Studies have shown that you can elevate your happy hormone levels by spending time in nature, and green is a color that represents freshness and growth. 

Plants also remove toxins from the air and release oxygen into the environment.  After a long day at work, returning to a fresh space is invigorating. 

Some of the best plants you can get include: peace lily, snake plant, and boston fern. 

4.  Scented Candles

A pleasingly scented candle can light your space and mood in more ways than one. Scented candles not only fill the air with fragrance, they also create a pleasant ambiance.  Different scents serve different purposes. For example, lavender helps to calm down anxiety. Be sure to use them with caution and extinguish when you leave the room. 

5.  Keep it Clean!

A clean home is a healthy home.  Regular cleaning can help us avoid allergies and other lung issues. Dust and allergens can build up in carpeting and other areas.  Keeping surfaces clean leaves helps eliminate germs and bacteria. 

Have a routine in place to keep things maintained and tidy. Don’t leave your dinner dishes in the sink to deal with in the morning; set up a day or two to vacuum. Maintaining things as you go about your day helps to avoid a bigger job when things get out of hand.

There are more simple things you can do to create an ideal environment for your health and wellbeing.  I’ll share those next time in Part II of this article.