Lily Bernheimer, author of The Shaping of Us: How Everyday Spaces Structure Our Lives, Behavior, and researcher in environmental psychology, said that every individual’s home should feel like a place of refuge from the rest of the world, and this psychology should always inform a good design.
In this year’s Salone del Mobile in Milan, Google has partnered with Arts & Mind Lab at Johns Hopkins University to explore the impact of sensory inputs on our mind and body. They designed three different rooms and the participants wore bracelets to track their physiological responses as they moved around each room.
The results were surprising, with half of the participants reporting feeling calmer in rooms that were not necessarily the ones that visually appealed to them the most. Ivy Ross, vice president of product design at Google, says, “We have over-optimized our environments for our cognitive mind, and we need to ignite our senses and increase awareness of what feels good. Nonetheless, we can have an impact on our surroundings to help dictate how we feel – whether consciously or unconsciously.
In this same exhibition, they also examined how furnishing can influence biology and well-being. The most important impact of design on mental health is balance. When the balance in a room is disturbed because the furniture doesn’t seem to belong, it can make you uncomfortable. Donald H. Ruggle, a Denver-based architect, suggested that even the shape of a table or design features that are sharp or jagged could cause anxiety. The furniture you choose should reflect your relationship to the room and the activities you do in it.
The role of art
Images have a special role to play in creating a space just for you. When you look around a room, art and photos are meant to represent a space that reflects your personality more intimately than anything else and can confirm that it is a space that you have cleared for yourself – even. When shopping for art and household items, think of pieces that uniquely represent you and your tastes to give a homey feel when hung on the wall.
Pieces of nature
In the 1980s, biologist EO Wilson coined the term biophilia. It refers to the means that humans need and seek connection with nature. Today, biophilia-inspired design inspires nature-inspired interiors and architecture because of its impact on people’s mental health and well-being. The use of organic materials such as parquet and indoor plants can mimic the ever-changing nature and help you feel more grounded in your surroundings.
If we want our body to harmonize with our surroundings, then lighting must be an important goal. Smart lighting combinations, including ceiling lights, Bedside lamp and more decorative candles, means you can change the lighting for any given mood and reflect daylight. More customization options and edits mean you can have a more meaningful impact on your mood.
With a lot of research on how people react to different colors, there seems to be an innate need to connect specific colors to certain ideas. With limited research, colors like reds, oranges, and yellows tend to be uplifting and colors like greens, blues, and purples to be calming. Choosing colors to suit the mood you would like to experience in each room is a great place to start.
While the impact of your interiors on your well-being can be deeply personal, it’s worth considering how these interior design fundamentals can affect your mental health and well-being. Instead of focusing on what feels good to us, we need to focus on what makes us feel good. To create the perfect balance in every room, from lighting to decor, consider Amart Furniture.