Creating a Sanctuary while in Seclusion
Quarantine got you crammed? You’re suddenly spending a lot more time at home. Your needs have changed – has your home? Perhaps your arrangement was working for you, but these days, with more people actively home for extended periods of time, you need to find ways to optimize your space and mindset. Don’t limit your surroundings to how they have been used in the past. Balance and support the many new functions of your space by making updates that reflect your current life needs. So both you, and your home, can reach your potential.
Here are a few simple home care considerations to support your health and well-being while coping with quarantine.
It Just Makes Perfect Scents
Ventilate your space. You are disinfecting all your hard surfaces more than ever, so there will be a lot of chemicals in the air. Air purifiers can work magic, but if you don’t have one and want to work with what is there – open the windows for 30 minutes a day if possible. If you can get a cross breeze going – even better! Spring may have arrived, but that lingering winter chill has a very cleansing freshness to it. Use it to your advantage.
Moisture is a leading cause of household odors, so if you have a room that doesn’t get much air flow or sunlight, you may want to consider bringing in moisture-absorbing products such as charcoal, zeolite, baking soda mixed with calcium-chloride crystals. You can even add dryer sheets to your closet or drawers. Take special care of laundry rooms, kitchens, bathrooms and basements, where moisture and humidity tend to run wild. Not only can moist rooms be bad for your physical health, they can be bad for your psyche, lowering your mood and productivity.
Remember you want to neutralize any less-desirable odors before adding any scents. When adding scent, go with the less-is-more mantra. It is helpful to scent based off your intention for the space. For example:
- Focus – Lemon, Rosemary, Mint
- Calming – Lavender, Neroli, Sandalwood
- Uplifting – Tangerine, Eucalyptus, Rose
Finding Your Sanctuary in Sound
Feeling stagnant? What you hear impacts how you feel. There are plenty of ways to use sound as a supportive medium. Whether you are trying to work, workout or unwind, there is a sound for that. Consider adding a water feature to offset second-hand noise such as your neighbor’s renovations or street noise. You can also curate your home playlist to suit the changing of tasks throughout the day. Being aligned with the sounds around you not only boosts mood and memory, but also offers health benefits. Options are plentiful these days—Amazon, Spotify, Google and Myndstream are all taking note. Check out your possibilities and get in tune with what works for you. If you want to go more natural try a chime, fountain or even a zwitscherbox.
You may find yourself converting a typically unused or less favorable room to an office, exercise or meditation space. Get clear on how you will be using the space. You can put rarely used and loose items away, clear any remaining clutter (a.k.a stuff that serves no purpose and doesn’t raise your vibe), and get the air quality right. Be practical and ask yourself what you might be willing to let go of to make this space more functional. And, the flip side of that—there may be something you already own that you may want to give a leading role to, such as a table turned desk or an exercise machine? You should then be able to more accurately identify how much room you have to play with and the items you want to rearrange.
A few tips to keep in mind:
- Fooling the eye: You want to create a feeling of openness and movement even in the smallest of spaces. Floating your furniture as little as 3-6 inches off the wall can create the appearance of a larger space and offer breathing room. If you are feeling compressed, try adding a mirror to visually open and extend the room. Yet, be sure that what’s reflected in the mirror is aligned with your vision for the room. Lastly, explore any opportunity to forge an indoor connection with the outdoors either by framing a window, emphasizing greenery or integrating nature-inspired décor.
- Balancing act: Like life, this is all about creating balance. As you move things around, watch that one side of a room does not feel heavier than the other. If you have a few heavy or substantial pieces, try to distribute them as evenly as possible while avoiding natural pathways. At this point, you are probably an expert on how you move through your space. Energy typically follows this same pattern. If there is anything you are consistently bumping into, now is the time to make your move.
- Light her up: Seek the sun indoors. Natural light uplifts the spirit, so ask yourself is there any way to let more light in? The sun shares its rays whether you get them indoors or out. Although Vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin, is only produced with direct exposure. Some therapeutic benefits of natural light are improved mood, increased physical activity and better sleep quality. Check for any areas that are suspiciously dark and add light if possible. Either reflect incoming light from the outdoors or get creative with light therapy lamps, desktop lights and accent lighting. If you are lighting your room with a task in mind note that short periods of dim light can boost creativity while bright lights increase analytical thinking, productivity and reaction times.
If you need any more tips, suggestions or a consultation to improve your residential well-being contact Santo / Sage.