National Relaxation Day: How to Create a Cozy Retreat for Optimal Relaxation
With National Relaxation Day coming up on August 15, we thought it’d be the perfect time to share our tips for creating a cozy retreat in your home for optimal relaxation and restoration. There are many reasons for needing a day to unwind. Whether you’re feeling overwhelmed at work, consumed by daily life stress, or simply have too many irons in the fire, it’s important to prioritize your mental health and wellbeing. Below are some great steps to help you create a safe haven in your own to go to when you are feeling stressed or in need of some relaxation.
Step 1: Pick a dedicated space
Choose a space in your home and make it look like your dream retreat. You’ll want this space to be a safe haven, perfect for relaxing and unwinding after a long day. Relieving stress is important, so you’ll want to choose a spot that is free of loud noise and distractions. Here are some great options that work well as a relaxing getaway space in your home:
An outdoor porch or terrace.
Outdoor spaces are great for relaxing, especially on perfect summer days and nights. The simple act of being outside and close to nature helps relieve stress and fatigue and helps combat anxiety and depression. Decorate your outdoor retreat with a comfortable outdoor hanging chair or hammock, and let the sounds of nature relax you after a long day in the office.
Creating a relaxing space inside your home is great, especially for those winter months when you want to curl up into a cozy ball. Your attic is great for storage but would be even better as your comfortable getaway. Skylights coupled with reading materials and fur throws make for a peaceful retreat to unwind and destress.
In your bedroom.
If you’d like to keep it simple and avoid any renovations or an outdoor space, create a retreat in your bedroom. This is the space where you are meant to relax and unwind, making it a great option to personalize for your relaxing needs. Pick out a stylish sofa or indoor hanging chair and combine with a sheepskin rug or some comfy throw pillows.
In your living room.
Although the living room is usually a popular spot for family and friends to gather, it can also be used for relaxation and alone time. Designate part of the room, possibly a well-lit corner, as your go-to space. Make it dreamy and stylish by incorporating a chic accent chair or bench, or any other comfortable furniture options that you’ll want to lounge in for hours, like these here. Make the corner stand out with a boho or modern theme, and get right to relaxing and reading your favorite book or drinking some hot tea.
Step 2: Unplug
Technology is a great way to stay connected and communicate, but it can cause unwanted stress when you feel pressured to check emails and messages long after you’ve left the office. Make it a point to unplug while in your cozy retreat so you can fully absorb your surroundings and allow your body and mind to rest. If you struggle with digital detoxes, even for a few hours, try relaxing through meditation, or relieving stress by drawing, listening to music, or any other activity that gives you a break from technology.
Step 3: Create a space with optimal lighting
Light biologically and psychologically affects us, so it’s an important factor to consider when creating a space to unwind in. Choosing a space with a ton of or very little natural light is completely up to how you like to relax, but keep in mind, too bright of a space can intensify emotions and potentially interrupt your sleep patterns. Some people prefer bright spaces that make them feel productive and give the room a spacious feel. Others prefer dark spaces to help them relax and shut off their brain.
Light most optimal for relaxation is lower overhead light with warmer tones, like these dimmable bulbs here. Red and amber lighting in the evening is great for improving your mental health, so if you prefer to relax closer to bedtime go this route. You can personalize your space with lighting elements like string lights or salt lamps for a cozy and zen vibe. Both provide a cozy atmosphere, especially during the winter months!
Step 4: Choosing the right colors for your mood
Color affects our mood and behaviors and has been known to evoke unique responses for everyone. Because of this, you’ll want to consider using whites, blues, and greens for a soothing environment. Blue is a relaxing color and studies show that people who slept in a blue room slept longer than other colored rooms. If you prefer to relax without dozing off to dreamland, de-stress with natural green accents, like vases, artwork, and floor cushions.
Step 5: Go green
Indoor plants improve your mood and make you feel better, they are also great for your health–so why not include them in your relaxing space? Studies by NASA have shown that houseplants can actually remove up to 87 percent of air toxins within 24 hours! Being surrounded by greenery and nature can make you feel more relaxed and calm, so improve happiness and enhance your mood by including plants in your relaxing sanctuary.
If you’re a beginner, opt for succulents. They are low-maintenance and only require light misting every now and then. They look great in well-lit spaces and will get the necessary sunlight if placed by the windowsill. To relieve stress and strike creative energy, build your own terrarium or paint your own indoor planter or vase. Or, if you prefer to buy your own, check out these great plants and planters to get a head start on creating a natural and green place to relax.