We all have a place we call home; for some it’s our own house, a friend's house or even a temple. The key to this homely feeling is a space that resonates with our own idea of serenity. It's a space that allows us to connect to an inner peace that is necessary in our lives. It’s a temporary blockade from reality- that’s right, no more meetings and deadlines to meet… temporarily of course.
To get this moment of peace, introducing mindful spaces in our homes is a great place to begin!
First off … What Exactly is a Mindful Place?
A mindful place not only provides us with inner peace but also awareness. It’s a place where being alone doesn’t make us feel lonely, it emphasizes our present self. It is a place, Judy Garland said it best, “where troubles melt like lemon drops”.
This “magical place” can look like anything- for example, it can be a quiet corner in your house, a library warmed by a fireplace, a tree with a pair of headphones in. This is something that is customizable to each person- you decide what is perfect for you, what calms you down, what makes you happy.
How does this help? Having a place dedicated to mindfulness can help improve concentration. It can reduce excessive thinking that often contributes to high levels of stress, forcing us to live in the moment. It helps us alter our instinctual responses by taking a pause and choosing how to proceed with our actions.
How Do You Create This Space?
It is a common misconception that a mindful space needs to be a large complex area in our house. This is not true, keeping it plain and simple is a perfect way to tie us down to the moment. Here are some basics to get you started setting up a space dedicated to improving your mental well-being:
1. Start by asking yourself what you want
Ask yourself some questions, is this a space surrounded by calming colors and lights? A quiet space where you can sit with a book and a cup of coffee and have a mental health break? Is this a space filled with bold colors and bright art prints to distract yourself from the stressors in your life? The point is, this is a place solely for you, get creative with it, have some fun.
2. Rearrange and re-organise
Research has shown that messy, cluttered rooms can be found stressful. The arrangement of a room and the objects composing a room can heavily impact the way we feel. A cluttered space is exactly like a cluttered mind. A clean room will help clear your mind and organize your thoughts. You want to only keep things in your mindful space that contribute to the tranquility of the atmosphere. Remove anything that you don’t need.
3. Comfort and Creativity
This is the fun part! By adding small but significant mementos of comfort and joy to our home we can improve our wellbeing. This action of deciding what our room looks like gives us a feeling of control over our situation. You can experiment with this. Take a look at aromatherapy, things like chamomile, lavender, and peppermint can remind us of peaceful mindfulness. These are not a necessity but if they help you relax, then they are a good option.
You can utilize candles, essential oil, and incense for this purpose. Another idea to ponder on is colors. Bright and warm colors can enhance a sense of happiness and feelings of energy while cool colors can instill a sense of ease. Pastel colors are another option as they are very soothing for the eyes.
Lastly, think of decorations. Any personal features you find relaxing are a perfect addition to your mindful space. For some people this can be wind chimes and artwork. Anything that provides you with comfort, like a warm blanket may be good for some. Natural elements can promote relief and reduce stress and anxiety. You may want to add plants and flowers or even a sound machine to imitate the sound of nature to drown out sounds and thoughts.
Think Outside the Box
There are many ways to capitalize on mindfulness in your space. Music, aromatherapy, lighting, nature are just a few off the long list. In the long run, what is most important is
homes are designed not solely for comfort, but for function as well. Every room in the house has a purpose. In terms of mindfulness, a space normally meant to read and write emails, take phone calls, and work is ideally not the most beneficial for a mindful experience. When we are mindful, we allow ourselves to experience life as we live it. We experience the world directly as it is. Not as it was, or how it could be.