I have long believed that you are how you decorate.
Not to go all Gillian McKeith on you, but let me explain.
Imagine waking up every morning in a house that was a complete mess. Dust everywhere, no plants, no decoration that’s been carefully thought about, no art or colours that express your personality. Just mess and you hated it. How would you feel every day?
I know the answer to this question. For the last year, Neil and I have been renovating our house. During some months it's become a regular thing to see plaster embedded into the old, shag pile carpets, and dust lining every surface. It’s made me feel miserable, and at times I’ve burst into tears and wanted to move back to our finished old flat, as tiny as it was.
It’s made me certain that design has a big role to play in how we feel every day and it's long been my belief that what you do to the look of your home effects your wellbeing. I’m not advocating decoration perfection here either, what I stand for is that everyone deserves a place they can make their own and call home.
So in today’s post I want to share with you 5 ways you can improve your health and wellbeing by introducing health-boosting benefits to your home.
I hope you enjoy!
5 ways you can improve your health and wellbeing by bringing health-boosting items into your home
1. Relax with aromatherapy
Stress affects all of us in one way or another - and making the home into a haven of calm can be a way of mitigating this. These days, there’s no need to go to the spa to reap the relaxing benefits of aromatherapy. You won’t even have to buy an oil diffuser, as you can get the same calming effects of lavender, mint and rosemary by planting them in your bedroom! Your sleep will be deeper and you may wake up feeling serene, your eyes trained at living plants and your nose taking in their aroma. So long as they are sat by a large window, they will release their scents. This can be bolstered by taking cuttings, drying them and preserving them in cloth bags you can keep in your linen drawers for a refreshing smell throughout your home. Try putting flowers by the front door so that you and your guests are welcomed with a fresh scent as soon as they walk in.
2. Grow herbs in the kitchen
If you’d rather keep your rosemary in the kitchen, that is an excellent idea too! I like to keep “herbes de provence” together so I can easily pick the leaves and plop them into whatever I’m cooking - roasted veggies, soups and sauces often benefit from fresh oregano, rosemary and basil. They are also fabulous in trendy infused water mixes - try rosemary and strawberry! Having herbs close at hand might motivate you to eat a healthy diet, and if not, they will certainly make your interior easier on the eye as they grow tall and proud.
3. Open your windows for air circulation
Having large windows for light and ventilation is essential, especially when you have plants. Those puppies need light and air to survive so pop them under some big windows for the best air purifying effects, even in the depths of winter when you can’t bear to ventilate for more than the strict minimum of 10 minutes per day. Rubber plants are perfect for air purification and they fit in extremely well with the modern farmhouse style. Fig trees are also very popular these days. Although they'll need baby wasps to bear fruit, the tree will help filter pollutants from your air. Aloe vera plants are also fantastic for the forgetful gardener because they are super resilient to drought (they need very little water), purify the air in your home PLUS you can chop their leaves off and blend them up into smoothies. Aloe gel can also be mixed with other ingredients to make DIY after-sun.
4. Grow veggies indoors
Some veggies can be grown indoors providing more greenery and life in your home as well as healthy additions to any meal. You could even have a tiny orange tree in a pot on a countertop or side-table, very reminiscent of French and Italian open-plan kitchens. If your thumbs are feeling particularly green, you could craft an indoor veggie garden with carrots, green beans, kale and tomatoes, that can be grown indoors with a little care. So long as you put them next to a window, you’ll be making homemade salads in no time! If you’re like me, the mere presence of herbs, fruits and veggies will motivate you to cook healthier, especially if they’re right there on the counter just waiting to be crunched.
5. Nurture a plant and see it come to life
Plants have been known to reduce stress. Not only does looking after them increase satisfaction and self-esteem (yes! You too can keep plants alive, even with a history of black thumbs!) but some plants are known to have anxiety-booting effects, like lavender. You are spoilt for choice for plants—it's up to you to determine which ones will bring you the most happiness—do you want a pretty flower like an orchid, something to tend to like a bonsai tree, or a plant that just smells amazing like jasmine or gardenias? There are plenty of resources out there for the black thumb gardener so use them wisely. Low-maintenance plants like english ivy and snake plants are no-brainers for beginner indoor gardeners as they are super hardy and probably won’t die on you, plus they look incredible lining your windowsills or bookshelves.
I hope this has inspired you to make some heath-boosting choices in your home decoration, if you try any out show me! I’d love to see. Tweet me a pic I’m at @fifimcgeee