Create a space for you to unwind after a long day.
You've just worked a 10-hour day, spent another hour in five o'clock traffic, only to come home and find the kids fighting over the television. You need a mini-vacation.
A relaxation space may be just the cure to help you kick back and recharge. Whether you want to meditate, play music, write a poem, or stare at a blank wall, the choice is yours. It's not hard to design a room that will allow you to unwind from the stresses of daily life. With a few modifications, any quiet space that offers you privacy is a candidate.
Color is highly emotional. Neutrals such as beiges and pale blues and greens encourage a calm, serene attitude. But some people flourish best with the hint of warmth that soft pinks, lavenders, and yellows provide. Whatever colors you prefer, keep your overall color palette for furniture and walls low contrast and subtle. Avoid brights and darks as well as intense lighting.
Scent and sound surround everything. So it's important to choose carefully. The smell of lavender or vanilla can deepen the soothing message of your room, as can scents that bring in the great outdoors, such as forest pine or sea breeze. But sound is equally important; your relaxation space will not work well if it's right above a noisy street. Enhance your space by adding the soothing trickles (and visual beauty) of an indoor water fountain. If you prefer music, play some quiet instrumentals. You may also enjoy vegging out to relaxing ambient sounds such as the recordings of birdsong, the sea, or white noise.
This can take the form of seasonal cut flowers brought inside from your garden or low-maintenance potted plants. Succulents are an excellent choice as they're small and can be grown anywhere that gets six hours or more of light. Consider an aloe and echeveria which are particularly well-suited to the Atlanta area. Besides being easy-care, succulents are fascinating to look at, with varied geometric foliage and distinct texture.
Scented or not, the quality of the air you breathe — in a relaxation space or elsewhere — can make a big difference to your sense of well-being. In an area where the air conditioner runs most of the time, the key to clean indoor air is using high-quality filters and changing them regularly. You'll literally breathe easier knowing your space is free of allergens, VOCs, and pollen. Larger house plants such as potted palms can help.
Whether you put a "Do not disturb" sign a lock on the door, make sure everyone knows the room is off-limits while you're enjoying your alone time. Of course, you'll have to make an exception for emergencies, but "what's for dinner?" does not constitute an emergency!
A relaxation room is an idea whose time has come. Rooms are even being installed in businesses and at schools. The right calming space can reduce anxiety and stress and help us think and concentrate better. It may take a little planning, but the result can be greater energy, an improved outlook, and an enhanced ability to enjoy daily life.
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