Everyone preaches it: Don’t bring work and the entailing stress home with you, and they’re not wrong – your home should be a sanctuary not just from the physical dangers of the outside world, but also emotional ones.
That’s why it’s so important to stress-proof your living room.
While you can’t eliminate stress from your life completely, there are ways to keep it in check at home by taking some mindful steps, and why not, since it’s where you head to at the end of the day to recover and recharge. This means it’s vital that it’s a safe, soothing and comfy space to escape to.
Not sure how to start? As always, we’ve got you covered.
1. Pick the right colours
There’s plenty of science to back up the effects of color on our mental state, making it worth trying out in your living room.
The first rule of thumb is to avoid bright, stimulating colors like red, orange, purple, soft pink, mint, and baby blue (great for when you’re at work, not so much when you’re trying to relax). If you’re a fan of bright colors like purple, opt for softer variations like lavender instead.
Not sure which colors to pick? Safe bets you can count on are neutral colors like cream, pearly grey, or white with warm undertones. More vibrant but relaxing options to consider include light blue-green, blue-grey, mauve, or even sage green.
Beyond the walls, it’ll also help that the large furniture pieces in your living room complement the overall relaxing tones.
If you want to experiment with a lighter color on your sofa but find the thought of reupholstering daunting, try slipping on a removable, machine-washable sofa slipcover instead.
This way, you can play around with different colors with feeling afraid of dirtying the fabric.
2. Eliminate clutter
Eliminating clutter from your living room doesn’t just mean keeping things tidy and out of the way.
It also means ensuring that everything in your living room has its own designated area: Children’s toys in the trunk, used coffee cups in the dishwasher, and remote controls on the TV cabinet.
It also pays to take heed from Marie Kondo and her effective tidying methods – give away or throw out items that you no longer have use for but still keep around for nostalgia’s sake.
Once you’ve gotten rid of clutter in your living room, you may even feel some weight lifting off your shoulders.
3. Invest in plants
And no, you don’t have to plant an entire garden indoors. All you need are a handful of potted plants can help ‘calm’ the living room and improve the air quality.
Studies have shown that looking at greens can also help relieve tired eyes, which is a plus when you’re trying to wind down.
4. Make it smell heavenly
Whether it’s with scented candles or essential oil diffusers, having scents of soothing essential oils wafting through your living room can help calm your senses.
However, it’s a worthwhile effort to do your research on the right scents for you and your space.
Those like lavender, ylang ylang, frankincense, vetiver, bergamot, and chamomile are some aromatherapy fragrances that have been proven to soothe anxiety.
And if essential oils aren’t your thing, try pick one that reminds you of a happy memory, even if it means baking chocolate chip cookies or blueberry pies every weekend!
5. Play with your fur babies
Do you have pets at home? Make the time you have with them count for something.
Savour the joy of playing, cuddling and grooming them (which they’ll love you all the more for), all of which have been proven to lower stress levels. Plus, who doesn’t like a cute distraction in the form of a soft, loving pet after a long day at work?
A word of caution: Having a pet at home means that you’ll need to pet-proof your living room (check out our post on how to cat-proof yours).
A great place to start is to ensure that your sofa is made of a fabric that’s pet-friendly, ie: Tightly-woven to discourage active claws and easy-to-clean options that’ll make your sofa low-maintenance.
Don’t want to change your sofa? Get a sofa slipcover instead. We have a wide range of fabrics in one-of-a-kind styles for you to choose from to ensure that they’re the right fit for your home and pets.
You can take our sofa slipcover fabrics for a test run by having them delivered to your doorstep here: