Have you ever walked into a room in your house only to want to walk right back out? For years my living room was a room in my house that only made me feel stressed. I knew there were things about it that I didn't like but I had no idea that such small changes could actually make it one of my favorite rooms in my house.
Your home should be a place for you to unwind, relax, and feel comfortable.
Unfortunately, sometimes de-stressing a room is hard to do, even in your own home. Today, I want to share with you how I changed my living room from a stress zone into a room that brings me joy and relaxation.
A cluttered room can make your space uninviting and cause a ton of stress and struggle. For me, this was the biggest issue that I faced in my living room. It also doesn't make it easy when you have a very small house without a lot of storage options. Here are some things you can do today to start clearing the clutter.
1. Focus on small sections of your room and adjust your vision on small isolated areas. Start with clearing one counter, de-clutter one shelf, or clear out one drawer. This will allow you to see the fruits of your labor and give you the motivation to move on to the next area.
2. Schedule time to declutter. Make yourself a declutter schedule where you set 15 minutes aside to work on the clutter every single day. This is not something I accomplished overnight. It took me about a week and a half-hour every day to finally see a clutter-free living room. Though this takes a little work, it's well worth the effort.
3. Get the family on board. This was by far my biggest challenge. My husband has a lot of hobbies and my son has a lot of toys so finding a way for all of us to be on the same page was difficult. The one thing that made this transition easier was by creating designated areas in the living room. Each person in the house has one area of the living room where their stuff belongs. For example, my son needed an area where he could easily put his toys away himself. This area needed to be contained to one small area in the living room. Our solution was creating two small baskets under the sofa table that held all of his toys. Since his playroom is upstairs, it's a simple storage solution downstairs.
- Related: 4 Ways to Tackle House Clutter
Natural light not only benefits your room but it also has a significant impact on your productivity and health as well. It has been reported that day-lit environments increases comfort and provides mental and visual benefits. This was also a huge challenge for me in a small space. Our huge 75 inch TV that my husband lovingly contributed to the family when we got married covers the only big window in the living room. Unfortunately, due to its size, that's the only area in the living room where it will actually fit.
Since I knew that natural light in a room can drastically affect your mood, I set out on a mission to bring as much of it as I could into my space.
Here are some ways you can bring more natural light to your space.
1. Make sure to give your ceiling and walls a nice coat of white or very light-colored paint. I was able to paint my living room walls with one gallon of paint for $18.99. I didn't choose anything fancy but it completely transformed our living room. By painting your walls and ceilings white or a very light color, you allow the natural light you do have to reflect off those areas.
2. Use mirror effects like the table above to capture and reflect as much light as possible. The more shiny areas you bring into your space, the more light you will capture. I was able to find a very large mirror at a thrift store for $15. I painted and distressed it and put up on the fireplace mantel. Our fireplace is the focal point of our living room and is one of the first things you see when you walk into our house. I was able to reflect and bring in a lot of natural light by adding this element.
3. Pay close attention to your window treatments. Light colors and lightweight fabric can make a huge difference in your room. I went with some white cotton curtains that I found at Target. Luckily I was able to buy one 84 inch panel that I cut in half to make two panels. This allowed me to cover the only other windows in the room for $24.99.
This may be a small element to add to your space but it can also bring a sense of peace. I immediately feel calmer when a candle is lit in any area of my home. That's probably why I have one in each room. You can say I am a little obsessed with candles. The other great benefit of candles besides the visual elements is that you can actually add aromatherapy into your space by burning scents that calm and relax you.
My favorite candles are not the most expensive. In fact, one of my many favorites can be bought at Target for $9.99. You can often find a great selection of tin candles in the clearance bins by the front doors.
If you are looking for scents that bring calmness and relaxation make sure to try some of these scents:
- Lavender: Soothing and relaxing. Helps relieve stress, depression, and anxiety
- Vanilla: Naturally warming and soothing.
- Cinnamon: Helps with exhaustion and fatigue.
- Rose: Relaxes a person and is known to help women balance hormones.
I never realized how important it was to bring nature into my home. I will be honest, I have never been really good at keeping plants in my home. No matter how I watered them or where I placed them, they usually ended up dying.
Consider these ideas to bring nature back into your home and get back to your outdoor roots.
1. Consider planting herbs. The number one nature element that I incorporated into my space was fresh herbs. Not only do they smell good but they save you money from having to buy them at the store. My living room and my galley kitchen are essentially one space. This made it easy for my herbs in the kitchen to be visible from the living room.
2. Look for fresh flowers in the clearance area of your local grocery store. I am constantly able to bring fresh carnations into my home for less than $7. The great thing about carnations is that they last a long time without having to replace them and they come in many different colors. If you are like me and don't possess a green thumb, succulents are an amazing option. They are easy to care for and have become a hot item in any room.
My living room remodel is almost complete and I am looking forward to sharing some wonderful pictures with you!
What are some of the ways you have de-stressed your room?