Let your home restore you!
It is said, “home is where the heart is.” It’s also true that home is where the rest is, where the restoration is. Home is where we go to rest, restore, refresh, find sanctuary for the next day and coming days.
We can never overestimate the value of our homes as a place to renew.
1. Create inviting rest zones. Despite all the research proving that an afternoon nap is good for you, it’s still not seen as acceptable unless you work for yourself or have a progressive employer.
That’s a shame, because the benefits of catnaps are many. Humans are uncommon among animals in the way we tend to sleep in one big chunk. We can learn a lot from our cat and dog friends, who can be seen tearing through the house like wild beasts one minute and flat-out sleeping the next.
2. Tech bans. We’ve all heard this one before, but it makes sense: If we’re staring at a screen before bed, our minds become overstimulated. Evidence shows that it’s not just kids who should lose the tech at least a couple of hours before bed.
3. Creative colors. Set the appropriate mood for the relevant areas of your home. If you intend to sleep or relax somewhere, use natural or soft palettes and soft lighting, and induce sleep and relaxation with cozy rugs and throws.
4. Space for fun. As we run around with our serious pursuits of shopping, working and staying connected to the 24-hour news cycle, are we sometimes forgetting to have fun?
5. Home-based hobbies. It might sound counterintuitive: Get more energy by doing more. Aren’t we just making ourselves more busy? But finding an activity we enjoy and that can totally absorb our minds — whether it can be done at home or requires going out — will ultimately wake us up.
6. Meditation space. The reported benefits of meditation are quite similar to those of the power nap. A regular meditation practice is said to lower the heart rate, improve memory, increase cognitive function and, of course, give us more energy.
7. Encouraging kids to help. If the budget doesn’t run to outside housekeeping help and you have little ones at home, start training them to share in the chores. Start with their own bedrooms; get them picking up after themselves and tidying their rooms. As they get older, get them to help in other areas of the home — cleaning bathrooms, cooking meals, tidying up shared areas.
8. Meal planning. If you think that eating badly is making you tired, take stock of your diet. Choose healthy takeout food, take the time to make meals at home and make time to eat dinner at the table rather than in front of the television or computer. Allow a couple of hours before bed without eating to help you sleep better.
Read Durnan’s full piece: