The health benefits of a well-designed home

Have you ever been in a beautiful room you didn’t want to leave?  Was it calming?  Did you feel happier there?

Now let’s think about a room you didn’t like.  Did it stress you out?  Were you overwhelmed?  Did it put you in a bad mood?

Well, the benefits of interior design and a well-designed home are real.  It’s more than just a pretty space and it actually influences our state of mind.  And there is even science to prove it called neuroaesthetics.  In fact, researchers at Harvard, Johns Hopkins, and other respected schools are discovering more about it.  So, let’s dive in and learn more. 

Maslow’s "Ugly Room" Study

Abraham Maslow was an American psychologist most famous for creating Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (physiological, safety, love/belonging, esteem, and self-actualization).  But you might not know that he developed another lesser-known study in the 1950s with his colleague, Norbett L. Mintz, known as “The Ugly Room.”

For the Ugly Room study they created and furnished three rooms: The Beautiful Room, The Average Room, and The Ugly Room.  The Beautiful Room had large windows with draperies, soft lighting, artwork, a beautiful rug, and quality furnishings.  The Average Room was neat and clean with standard, basic furnishings.  The last room, the Ugly Room, was all you’d image.  It was dirty, unkept, painted a depressing gray, had a bare mattress and a boxspring on the floor,  had a torn overhead lamp, and was cluttered with boxes.  

Next, student volunteers were placed in each of the three rooms and asked to look at photographs of faces.  The volunteers were asked to rank the photos’ energy and well-being. So, what do you think happened?

The Results

Well, the results showed that the volunteers in the Beautiful Room thought the photos were overwhelmingly positive.  But the volunteers placed in the Ugly Room had very negative feelings about those exact photos.  The Average Room photos actually fared similarly to the Ugly Room and were also viewed more negatively by the volunteers.  

As you can see, our environments actually DO influence and change our state of mind. And as the Average Room results showed us, going with a bare minimum doesn’t give us much benefit.  We need the fully designed, beautiful room, to really make a difference in our lives. 

Benefits of interior design-
The stress connection

Our homes really do impact our stress levels.  Think about when you’ve traveled to a fancy resort or gone on a vacation.  You feel peaceful, relaxed.  Maybe you and your partner even got along better?  Your stress hormone, cortisol, actually decreases in calming, beautiful spaces. 

Big companies like Amazon, Etsy, Google, Apple, and Pinterest know this and invest big money creating beautiful spaces for their employees.  Why would they do that?  Well, happier employees mean more productive employees.  In addition, each employee can increase their productivity by something like $3600 per year when they feel better in their work space.  That’s a huge savings and reason for companies to invest in their design.  Don’t you think?

Bring nature in

We benefit from having a connection with nature and bringing elements of nature into our homes.  Another study, by Roger S Ulrich, PhD at Texas A&M University showed the benefits nature had on patients recovering from abdominal surgery.  He examined 46 surgical patients in a suburban Pennsylvania hospital.  23 of those patients had rooms with windows overlooking trees while the other 23 patients’ windows overlooked brick walls.  Can you guess what happened?  

The patients recovering in rooms with windows overlooking nature and trees had shorter postoperative hospital stays, received more positive nurses’ notes, AND needed less pain meds.  In conclusion, it made a big difference on their health.  

As you look at your home, what do you see?  Is it calming?  Does it give you a view of nature?  Are there natural elements included?  Does it make you feel good?  If not, what should you do?

How a well-designed home makes your feel good

Conclusion-Final thoughts...

Now that you know the benefits of interior design and a well-designed home, it’s time to create one. 

Whether you’re a DIYer, or would rather hire, you can create a beautiful home that brings you peace, reduces stress, and makes you feel better overall.  If you’d like my help you can reach on my contact page.  Or, if you’re doing it yourself go download my Ultimate Cheat Sheet Bundle and other freebies I created on my Free Resources page to get you started.

In conclusion, when you invest in your home, you’re investing in your well-being.  You’re more positive, happier and feel better overall when you’re in a beautiful setting. What are you waiting for?  Let’s get started transforming your home today.

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Sally Soricelli