Have you ever noticed how much your environment affects your mood? Just think about how being at work makes you feel compared to the energy surge you get when you step outside of it. There are ways you can make your personal environment way more enjoyable. Here are a few simple ways to create joy in the space around you.
Have Fun With A Happy Soundtrack
“Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.” – Plato
Don’t underestimate the power of sound; research suggests that music is a tool powerful enough to make people happy. There’s actual psychology behind it. According to Grammy-nominated composer Rich Tozzoli, listening to music is so enjoyable because it activates mood-elevating chemicals in the brain.
If you find yourself in need of a quick pick-me-up, throw some music on! A good song will not only lift your spirits, but it could also motivate you, giving you what you need to increase your productivity. If you’re looking for a good uplifting track, there are two things to consider: lyrics and rhythm. Studies suggest that instrumental genres like Jazz and Classical are the most uplifting, while Reggae, Pop, and EDM give us the positive lyrics we need for a healthy dose of optimism. Try making a playlist of any song that makes you smile, or get inspired by this “Happy Hits” playlist from Spotify.
Alleviate Stress With A Pleasant Scent
Pleasant smells come with many psychological perks, like alleviating symptoms of stress and anxiety. A good scent makes your environment more comfortable, which causes you to relax. Scientists concluded that your sense of smell has the strongest connection to memory and emotions. In addition to kicking up fond childhood memories, some scents can brighten up a room, subtly perking up your day with just a whiff. Aromatics are so impactful that they have their own form of therapy; “aromatherapy” has long been common in countries like China and India.
Warm scents like vanilla have calming, soothing effects, while bright scents like lemon have enough zing to lift your mood and increase alertness. Even a spritz of perfume has enough radiance to put you in a good mood. Scientifically, the following notes are packed with mood-altering scents:
- Fresh cut grass
- Ylang Ylang
Try adding scented candles, incense, or essential oils to your atmosphere and see how much of a difference it makes.
Surround Yourself With Personalization
Decorating your space with personal accents invites fun into your surroundings. When you’re decorating to maximize happiness, the goal is to surround yourself with anything that brings you joy or pleasure. For example, Tim Burton fans can surround themselves with The Nightmare Before Christmas memorabilia or feature one of his famous art books on their bookshelf. If you’re a fan of Prince, get yourself a picture of the Purple One and hang it on the wall behind your computer desk. You’re only limited by your imagination.
You can do this with tools including:
- Stickers, colorful pens, and crafts
- Inspirational quotes and poems
- Photos, posters, and paintings
- Books and collectibles
- Newspaper and magazine clippings
Your atmosphere will become a customized “safe haven,” immersing you in your own bubble of joy.
Breathe Easier By Tidying Up
Chaotic, disorganized spaces trigger feelings of worry and discomfort. Keeping your space clean can help you feel more at ease, allowing you to be more comfortable. In addition to feeling calmer, researchers at the BBC concluded that being in a tidy room can be good for your self-esteem because “the idea of tidying and being neater can give you a feeling that you’re capable of achieving goals.”
Take a look around you and see if messiness could be what’s bringing your mood down. If so, dedicate time to some cleaning and organizing. The cleaning process itself can be therapeutic: as you get rid of things that are no longer of use to you, you’ll feel lighter, which will naturally perk your mood up.
Increase Your Energy With Lighting
A simple way to build happiness using the space around you is by brightening up your space (literally) using light. Something as simple as filling your room with sunlight can increase your energy levels. Being in dark, dreary spaces really brings the mood down. In extreme cases, research suggests that being in the dark on an ongoing basis can cause depression.
If your low vibe is caused by a gloomy scene, counter it by adding light. Nowadays, there are so many creative options for illuminating a room with various lamps, light switches, and string lights, which upgrade your style, too. Even though artificial lighting is bright enough to do the trick, scientists agree that nothing beats good old-fashioned sunlight.
If you’re looking for simple, practical ways to experience joy no matter where you are, give one of these solutions a try.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons