Home is where the heart is. True, but what if your home is making you stressed out and/or sick? Nobody wants to walk into their house at the end of a tiring day just to feel their anxiety levels rise, right? But even though we clean and scrub regularly, there still seems to be something making us anxious in our homes. What could it be?
Emerging research has shown that the look and layout of your home can drastically affect your mood (and we are not talking about Feng Shui – that’s another story for another day). Nobody wants to be depressed because of their living conditions, as home is supposed to be our private space where we escape to and unwind.
Ever considered the minimalist interior design? Changing your home from a contemporary cluttered space to a mood-enhancing, less-is-more layout? You may be surprised to learn that the minimalist interior design is not only popular, but could also make you happier.
Are you familiar with the term ‘neuro-architecture’? It’s an innovative study whereby neuro- science and architecture combine to create modern designs that are effective, functional and maybe even healing! This focuses on various aspect of a house, including its lighting, space and room design, and how they all make us feel.
Some of the ‘symptoms’ of a typical house that can cause a bad mood are:
• A cluttered room, which raises anxiety levels.
• A room that’s too dark may lead to depression or feelings of gloominess.
• If a room is too bright, it can cause you to feel stressed and hurried.
• A room that’s too small can make one feel cramped, trapped or closed-in.
Got lots of knick knacks lying around? Then it only makes sense why your home is so dusty.
Tables covered in trinkets, laundry on the floor, layers upon layers of pillows on beds and sofas, and area rugs virtually covering every single floor space of every room all contribute to dust and allergens. And even though we understand that you like to buy these décor items to make your home pretty and cosy, the sad fact is that you may just be achieving the opposite result: making your living spaces cluttered and a haven for allergy-inducing dust mites.
Think of the typical home or room styled up in the minimalist interior design. No endless layers of rugs, cushions and decorative junk, but rather a clean, uncluttered layout that still manages to stay welcoming.
Less things, less stress – easy!
homify hint: By no means are we suggesting that you toss out all valuable items or mementos, as these can also help you feel grounded and satisfied. So, when it comes to your favourite books and family photos, for example, hang on to them. A too-sterile home can aggravate feelings of loss, emptiness and sadness.
The brain is a funny thing and we may never fully understand why it makes us feel the way we do about everything. However, one thing that various studies agree on is that the brain reacts positively to symmetry!
It may sound silly to suggest that, for instance, placing matching side tables with identical lamps beside your bed will make you happier, and yet there is some psychological proof to achieving balance in your interiors and how it can make you feel more satisfied.
This connects with the positivity of the minimalist interior design, which is usually simple and symmetrical in design and layout. The end result? You are happier as soon as you enter a minimalist space!
‘Light and simple’ is the key term when it comes to the colour palettes of the minimalist interior design. You may also note that a lot of minimalist homes have rather large windows that allow an abundance of natural light to enter the space. In addition, their wall colours are usually quite neutral, with a splash of bright orange or other vivid tone used very sparingly via accent walls or décor.
The reason for this is because these neutral colours allow a home to feel much more open, inviting and airy. The epitome of a relaxing space! How could that make anybody feel depressed or anxious?
Rooms styled up with neutral and simplistic designs are processed as a whole by our brains. Our eyes also don’t flit about as much trying to distinguish between various colours and objects.
Of course you are utmost welcome to introduce pops of colour into a minimalist room or home. Just do it in a balanced manner by adding hints of the same colour throughout the room. For example, sky blue cushions on your sofa complementing the arctic blue wingback chair in the corner. Maybe even throw in a darker shade of blue (cobalt, anyone?) in the form of a vase on that coffee table. All of these accents match and give the room a sense of balance while also refraining from a too-boring look by opting for just plain neutrals.
So, are you hyped enough to start experimenting with minimalist interior design? First of all, get rid of the clutter to free up more space. It’s the first step on your way to a new, simple home with balance, symmetry and a happier vibe.
Now, for the slightly more vivacious cousin of minimalism – we present The homify guide to Scandinavian style interiors.