Did you know that you can design and decorate your home to evoke the feelings you want? Whether it is security, comfort, power or tranquility, your interiors can be designed to bring about the feelings you want.
Did you know that you are already surrounded by design and decoration that has been created to manipulate you into feeling a certain way and into doing certain things? Supermarkets do it. Schools do it. Even hospitals do it. And certainly corporations do it. Not to mention prisons. Because they know that the environment can have a very specific impact on their customers, students, patients, workforce and inmates.
They want people to buy more… learn faster… get better quicker… work harder… behave. So why don’t we harness the power of design & decoration to make us feel better in our own homes?
Our environment has a very distinct impact on us. Don’t you just know when you’re supposed to be quiet in certain parts of a building? Do you realise you are being guided around buildings by following certain colour cues or signs? Do you know canteens and restaurants are designed so you don’t spend too long there (wasting valuable work time)? Do you know that shops know exactly how to manipulate you in different parts of the building so you buy more?
Impact on wellbeing
So if they are all making the most of the power of design and decoration, why aren’t we? The psychological effects our surroundings have on us and the potential impacts are huge. If you take some time to really think about and design your interiors, you too can harness these design principles to create places that not only look great, but also feel great.
Design is about the layout of the space. The number of rooms you have, what activities take place in each of these rooms, where the light is needed, heating requirements, ergonomics (a word you’ll know if you’re very tall or very short) which looks at how to design around the human body and make things comfortable. Design thinks about flow and efficiency and, at its most basic, how to make life work well.
Decoration on the other hand is about making things look good. But don’t think it’s all superficial and nothing but cushions and tassels. There is great power in beauty and the ability to harness aesthetics can bring about some incredibly important and far from superficial results – such as a positive impact on your wellbeing.
Colour is also extremely important. Are you aware that certain colours produce a reaction in you? And that different patterns and textures and shapes will make you respond in different ways (both positively and negatively)?
Blue and green can lower your blood pressure. The actors’ room is called the green room because the colour would calm them before they go on stage. Blue is used a lot in hospitals as it keeps stress levels low, calms the system and aids recovery. Yellow keeps people happy while red and orange will excite your eyes and stimulate you. White has a huge array of interpretations – some consider it very calm, while others see only clinical and morbid connotations.
Can you imagine what would happen if you lived in an environment that supported you completely – in terms of both design and decoration? And how you would feel in your home as a result? We could all do with some feel good factors in our homes; a dose of empowerment to help us get through our fabulous but ridiculously hectic lives. We could all do with coming home to somewhere that makes us feel secure at the end of a stressful day. More to the point we could all do with creating an environment that doesn’t add to that stress. I hope this has inspired you to take action in your home and make it the best environment it can be for you and your family.