There’s nothing more important than your mental health, and modern life can really take its toll on the mind. A stressful job, a lack of “me time” and feeling isolated or lonely can all affect the wellbeing of your residents. In truth, many different factors play a role, which is why it’s important to find new ways to improve mental health wherever possible.
It’s estimated that Brits spend around 92% of their time indoors. We don’t recommend spending that much time inside, but we know it can be difficult to get outside for longer. Around eight hours a day is spent at work, and the unpredictable British weather puts a lot of people off leaving the house, especially as we get into colder months. Covid-19 played its part as well with many people now choosing not to go out unless they have to.
Due to the amount of time spent inside, it’s important to consider how interior design can improve mental health. The better we feel indoors, the better our wellbeing. There are many things that can be done to your interiors that will have a positive effect on the mind of your residents. Speaking with our Design team we’ve listed our top tips below.
1. Go with a Minimalist Design Style
Minimalist designs build on the concept of ‘less is more.’ Everything in your development must have a purpose, or you’ll create a space that has no rhyme or reason to it. There are five key elements to Minimalism that can help improve your mental health. They are:
It creates a decluttered home
A Minimalist property is easy to maintain
Every piece of furniture has a purpose
Minimalism a timeless style
It’s ideal if you’re furnishing on a budget
Once a home is decluttered, it's easier to appreciate the simplicity and beauty of the aesthetics in place. It puts a greater emphasis on what's there rather than what isn’t, creating a calming and peaceful space.
One of our Design teams favourite trends, this style is a balancing act, and it’s not easy to get right. Our expert interior designers can help you find the perfect furniture to ensure your Minimalist space works to improve mental health among your residents.
2. Introduce Elements of Nature
There’s a strong argument that people aren’t suited to being inside for so long. Modern humans evolved from beings that were a lot more in-tune with nature. The longing for plantlife and natural interior design elements taps into the primitive aspects of our DNA.
Biophilic design is well known for its effect on improving our mood and wellbeing. Many studies have shown how plants help reduce stress levels and anxiety. Plantlife can even boost our cognitive ability, which is why the trend is proving popular in office spaces.
Small changes such as having a few houseplants or a window box installed can greatly improve mental health. They also add a touch of colour to a space and can help make an area appear larger when placed strategically.
3. Let There be Light
While we’re on the subject of nature, natural light is one of our best friends and you might not even realise it. Sunlight is great for making a space feel less confined and works wonders to improve our general mood. This is because sunlight is thought to increase the amount of serotonin your body releases, which makes a person feel calm and focused.
When designing a property, you need to find ways of introducing as much natural light as possible if you want to improve mental health. This could mean installing large windows, bifold doors, or skylights, and placing furniture such as a sofa or desk in a place where it can catch the most light.
4. Think About the Colour Scheme
The psychology of colours is a significant aspect of interior design. Some shades can make us:
On the flip side, other colours can make us:
Muted colours such as tan and beige work well with biophilic designs to make a space feel brighter, airer and relaxing. They also tend to work very well in a Minimalist setting, as the colour doesn’t distract the eye. Certain shades of green and blue can be added to bring a pop of colour to setting without taking anything away from the calming atmosphere you’re trying to achieve.
It’s always difficult to balance the right colour scheme, so make sure to speak to an expert interior designer to discover the best way to use colour to improve mental health.
5. Make Room for Company
Many people feel lonely or isolated, especially those who live alone. At LOFT, one of our specialties is creating spaces that open up opportunities for social interaction. We provide services for BTR and PBSA schemes all over the country, and we know from first-hand experience that a well-designed space encourages social activity.
Lounges, kitchens and other communal areas are perfect spaces that can be opened up and made more inclusive. The right seating can help form close bonds, as people feel more inclined to speak with each other.
6. Remember to Add a Touch of Luxury
When all is said and done, everyone wants to live in a nice home with tasteful decor. Old furniture that lacks style, comfort and quality can affect the mood of your residents. If they don’t like the interior, they'll never really be happy at home because all they'll think about is how much they want to change things.
It’s a common mistake that people think luxury means a high price tag. We offer a great range of furniture that proves luxury can be affordable. You can find our full range for every room by clicking here.
LOFT: Helping to Improve Mental Health Through Interior Design
There’s no one-size-fits all approach to improving mental wellbeing. What works for one person might not work for all your residents. However, there’s no denying that happiness begins at home, and an interior specifically designed to improve mental health could have great implications on your residents' everyday life.
At LOFT, our experienced Interior Design team have worked on countless properties, finding ways to make people feel much happier in their homes. To see how our Interior Designers can help, make sure to get in touch.