Creating More Peace in Your Home
Reclaiming our ability to recharge and find peace at home
With most people home far more than before the pandemic, our home life has become the center of a lot of energy. Now, our domestic sphere is doubling as an office, a school, a camp, and much, much more than it was designed to do, at least in the way our society understands the idea of home. For many, this used to be a place of peace—to recharge after being in the world. But now, the world has come home with us and it is becoming increasingly difficult to maintain a sense of serenity.
It is almost impossible to control the outside energy that is now in our personal space. Despite the following tips, it is still vitally important to make sure our internal state remains as stable and peaceful as possible, which is best achieved through regular meditation, exercise, and slowed down, mindful living.
Rethink our physical spaces
Before becoming a clinical psychologist, I was fascinated at the relationship between our built spaces and our emotional wellbeing. The way hospitals are designed impact our ability to heal; the way our cities are planned correlate with physical exercise and thus mental health; the amount of natural light increases many health outcomes. We should all at least consider how our home affects how we feel.
Our physical spaces reflect our internal states. It’s a bidirectional relationship: the more organized we feel internally, the more ordered our home will be and vice versa. I’m sure many of us have considered how we might de-clutter after Marie Kondo became a household name and it’s important we continue to try and pair down by re-evaluating our material goods in order to create more harmony in our lives. Sometimes organizing one closet or drawer is enough to bring some stress relief. Try to think about how your spaces might be used most effectively and if there are any small shifts to organization, design or function that could make life a little easier.
Increase silence and downtime in the home
Along with physical changes to our space, it is also helpful to make sure we create enough moments of quiet for ourselves and our families. This is very difficult to do with technology often occupying so much of our attention. For this reason, it’s even more important our children know how to tolerate silence, downtime, and less stimulation. It’s within this space that children become aware of their busy minds, discover more self-awareness and self-monitoring, and ultimately learn regulate their emotions. These positive impacts also occur in adults when you are able to find some time to disconnect.
With so much going on at home, creating moments of stillness will likely not happen organically. Therefore, it’s helpful to try to create some structure in our schedules, even if it’s something small like going to bed and waking up at a consistent time or making sure to eat lunch at the same time each day. This helps us be a little more mindful during the day instead of letting time fly by.
There is going to be more stress at home, we can expect that. Just being aware of some of these shifts can help us recognize why we might be a little more short, irritable, anxious or depressed than normal. Making more space in our home and our day allows for us to slow down, live with more intention, and become more connected to how we are doing.