With the rapid changes, social isolation, and endless uncertainties brought about by the global pandemic, it is safe to say that everyone has been experiencing anxiety and stress in different aspects of life, be it academics, work, and/or relationships. As your home turned into your own classroom or workspace, the challenge of maintaining work-life balance may have also affected your mental wellbeing. To mitigate the impacts on your mental health during these troubling times, making your home cozy might just be the thing you need.
1. Reduced Stress and Anxiety
Working remotely and accomplishing most tasks, if not all, with technology have left many to live unhealthy and sedentary lifestyles, with vague work-life boundaries. Having a cozy home allows you to find the work-life balance that you need as it provides you a sanctuary where you can get your well-deserved rest after a long day of work. The coziness of your home also encourages you to slow down and unplug while enjoying a cup of tea or coffee, or reading a book during your break. Doing this gives your mind and body rest, effectively lowering your anxiety and stress levels.
2. Increased Happiness
Embracing coziness in one’s lifestyle can improve overall happiness. This is partly why Denmark, a place with the Hygge culture or lifestyle of creating a cozy atmosphere and enjoying the good things in life, is among the worlds’ happiest countries according to the World Happiness Report. Since a cozy home promotes unplugging, it can also stimulate social interactions with the people sharing your space; these connections, as well as physical touch, raise serotonin levels, essentially improving your mood. In addition to this, having a living space that gives you simple pleasures in life can develop a greater sense of gratitude in you.
3. Improved Mindfulness
Living in a cozy home can improve your sense of mindfulness. Having neutral colors, warm lighting, plants and flowers, as well as eco-friendly furniture in your space provide a sense of comfort and safety, allowing you to lower your guard and be more present in the moment. In our current situation, you’ll find that being mindful can be beneficial as it improves focus and immune functioning and reduces anxiety and stress.
4. Better Self-care
Now that many are working or studying at home, taking care of oneself has become easier to neglect. Focusing solely on performing well and achieving numerous tasks every day, sometimes even more than what is manageable in this remote setup, to the point that you disregard practicing self-care altogether is like setting yourself up to be burnt out real fast. The coziness of your home can help prevent this as it encourages you to pause and dedicate time to yourself. Spending at least an hour every day to unwind and relax can help recharge your batteries, and make you more productive as soon as you get back to work.
As social isolation remains to be part of our new normal, finding ways to combat its negative effects on our mental health is perhaps as essential as the Coronavirus safety protocols to surviving this pandemic. With most of your days spent at home, making the effort to turn it into a cozy and relaxing sanctuary will definitely be worth it.