You’re happiest at home, but the décor within your space doesn’t do much to reflect your joy. Whether it’s a builder-grade neutral finish, outdated wallpaper or a lack of natural light, one element can make the whole space feel wrong.
But we’re here to change all that with makeover tips designed with your happiness in mind. Put a few into action and see just how much more cheerful your home seems — and how much more cheerful you are every time you walk through the front door.
- Light Up Your Spaces
One less-than-happy element of your home could be its lack of natural light. Dark spaces tend to mute our productivity — how often do you find yourself craving a Netflix marathon over tackling your to-do list on a weekend afternoon? It may have something to do with the link between natural light and productivity which has been used in the workplace to make workers happier and more industrious.
Of course, you can’t just will natural light into your home; you might not be able to hire a contractor to cut some new windows into your drywall, either. Start by taking advantage of the natural light you do have by drawing back curtains and shades during the daytime. You can also hang a few mirrors to reflect and duplicate what natural light you do have.
If that’s still not enough, invest in a few strategically placed table and floor lamps. Grab bulbs that mimic the natural glow of the sun — no stark white fluorescents here, please. The right warm lighting will emulate the sun’s rays, thus making your space feel warmer, brighter and happier.
- Add Color
In order to sell homes, most builders and sellers choose to brush neutral colors over their walls to appeal to more potential buyers. However, these colors probably don’t reflect your style and do little to create the happy atmosphere you want out of your dwelling.
Put a smile on your face by choosing new paint colors in your favorite hues. You could also try learning more about the psychology of color and choosing shades that create the very vibe you crave. For example, an orange or yellow room will give you an energy boost, while green invokes the serenity and peacefulness of nature. Your definition of happiness could be bright and energetic, calm and serene, or somewhere in between. Find the color that reflects your vibe and voila: happiness unlocked.
- Make It Personal
Now that your space is brighter and more colorful, it’s time to accessorize. One of the best ways to feel happy is to surround yourself with moments and memories in which you felt your happiest. If you have personal photos or memorabilia of those trips, weddings, births or graduations, turn them into personalized art that’ll make you smile every time you see it.
The easiest way to turn photos into a focal point is to build your own gallery wall. Images in different sizes and frames work together to create a piece of art that will become the centerpiece of the room in which you hang it. You could also create shadowboxes full of your concert tickets, travel maps, graduation tassels, wedding-day flowers… the possibilities are as endless as your happy memories.
Your personal touches don’t have to end with photos, either. Simply choosing accessories and artwork that you like is enough of a personal touch to make each room happier and a bit more you. Go shopping and pick up a few items to get your home’s interior design started; you can always add more as you go and make the space even more customized and cheerful.
- Ditch the Clutter
Not all of the factors causing your unhappiness have to do with what your house lacks; it could also have to do with what you’ve put into your house since moving in.
Surprisingly enough, clutter causes us to feel stressed out and unhappy for many reasons. It makes it hard for us to relax. It causes us to feel embarrassed or guilty, especially when people come over. It even makes it hard to concentrate on a task because there’s so much other stimuli around.
There is an easy fix for this one, though: purge your belongings and keep only what you really need. Focus on one room at a time, throwing away unsalvageable items and donating the rest to someone else who can use them. Once you’ve cleared that away, focus on organizing what’s left to leave behind a tidy, happier room.
How will you make your home happier? These are only four ways, but all four show just how simple it can be to put a smile on your face. So, grab a paint brush, empty your closets, hang some photos and let the light in: it’s time to love your home and feel happy every single day you wake up there.