The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (2023)

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In today's busy world maintaining a tranquil home plays a significant role in alleviating stress. Thankfully, according to the experts, the simplest of changes hold the key to creating a stress-free home environment.

Our homes are our personal sanctuaries, the one place where we feel safe and nurtured but in a fast-paced world if the balance isn't right with our interiors even in the comfort of our own homes we can still feel overwhelmed by outside pressures.

Simple styling tricks and tweaks can be the key to unlocking a greater sense of calm in any room, because much like the daily habits to keep your homes clean and tidy often it's the little things that can make the biggest impact.

We talked to feng shui practitioners and interior designers to seek expert advice on how to create the ideal stress-free home environment. From calming color palettes and comforting textures to smart home organization ideas these simple changes can all go a long way.

Expert tips for creating a stress-free home

"What makes a calm environment?" asks Olga Trusova, (opens in new tab) designer, design consultant, and author of Calm Living. "I offer three primary requirements: (a) it soothes the senses, (b) it promotes balance, and (c) it makes life easier."

"Remember you can make any space more conducive to calm through small changes with big impact." With that thought in mind, here are eight simple ways to create a more soothing atmosphere in your own home.

1. Choose a calming color palette

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (1)

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(Image credit: Zhoosh)

It goes without saying that the color palette of your home plays a huge part in how calm you feel within the space. And while the best paint color for your living room may differ from the best paint color for your bedroom they should always be colors that speak to you to make you feel at ease.

"The right colors in your home can have a huge impact on your state of mind, helping to reduce stress and be more mindful," says Sophie Smith, CEO of the mindful paint company Zhoosh (opens in new tab)."Mindfulness is about being present and engaging in the moment. It is about recognizing and appreciating how you feel in the space around you. The easiest place to make this space work is the walls.A quick lick of paint can completely change a room and is a relatively cost-effective way to update things."

“There is a psychology to color," explains Dan Mazzarini (opens in new tab), principal and creative director of interior design collective BHDM Design (opens in new tab). "Certain colors have higher “activation energy,” like red and yellow."

"Think about what you want your space to feel like, and then implement colors that will have that effect," Dan advises. "For instance, blue in a space is both empowering and calming. White is a constant quieting neutral, and green’s biophilic emphasis puts people at ease."

In the same way that paint can make a small room feel bigger, the way you use color is also important for creating a calming space. As Sophie explains: "The way colors are used in different areas can also be used to help lift a mood, drawing the eyes towards windows and away from darker corners.Make the most of any natural light you have."

2. Seek comforting textures

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (2)

(Image credit: Future)

When it comes to creating an environment that feels all-encompassing it's essential to appeal to all the senses, including touch. Tactiletextures and soft furnishings are integral for providing an element of touch to a decor. They also aid with the overall softness of the space, creating a more tranquil atmosphere by absorbing sound – and negative energy, according to experts.

“Soft furnishings help to slow energy from rushing around the room, to create a calm and convivial space," explains Zoë Vita James, a classically trained feng shui practitioner who works with Open Space Concepts (opens in new tab). "Judicious use of floor rugs, cushions, and soft window treatments are all great for this. Just take care not to over-clutter the room, to keep it feeling airy and inviting."

3. Appeal to your sense of smell

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (3)

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(Image credit: Getty Images | Madeleine Steinbach)

In the same way that touch can influence how you feel in your surroundings scent also plays an integral part of feeling at ease. It's no coincidence the best spas all have a somewhat familiar scent of natural oils and ingredients that instantly make you feel grounded.

"Scent is one of the easiest ways to create astress-freeatmosphere," explains Lorriane Anderson (opens in new tab), a spiritual teacher, entrepreneur, and author of the new bookThe Witch's Apothecary (available at Amazon) (opens in new tab). "I call this Perfuming the Home in my book. TheCleveland Clinic (opens in new tab)says essential oils act directly on the hypothalamus part of the brain, which is responsible for the hormonalrelease. They can uplift mood, reduce lethargy, and even boost metabolism."

"Essential oils also have energetic properties. Combine one to three oils, selecting them based on their spiritual intentions and use the blend in your diffuser, create sprays, mix them with herbs to create your own loose incense, or add them to simmer pots to fill your space with fragrance and good vibes," Lorriane advises.

"Try a mix of woods and florals for grounding, citrus and herbaceous scents for uplifting the mood, or heartier florals combined with either spice or resin to relax."

4. Keep sentimental value in sight

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (4)

(Image credit: Future)

In Olga's book Calm Living: Simple Design Transformations to Fill your Space With Tranquility (available to buy at Amazon) (opens in new tab), she talks about embracing items of sentimental value. Rather than leaving treasured possessions boxed away to gather dust in the attic, the idea is to feel enriched by their presence to help create a sense of calm in the rooms you use on a daily basis.

"I would encourage you to experiment with displaying your sentimental items, almost gallery-like, instead of hiding them away," Olga says in her book. "Your items could go on top of a sideboard in the living room, on the wall, or on a mantel above the fireplace."

5. Find balance

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (5)


(Image credit: Getty Images | Damian Lugowski)

With any decor scheme, it's often about striking the right balance because too much is cluttered and chaotic while too little can feel empty and cold – neither of which is conducive to creating a sense of comfort.Start by decluttering your home to ensure no room is overfilled with unwanted items.

Moving from room to room, consider what needs to be there and what could be put into storage or rehomed. The best approach to feeling motivated to start decluttering is to take it one step at a time – feeling like it has to be done in one day will only add to the stress you might already be feeling.

"Simple changes to our space can offset the emotional weight of anxiety, sadness, and stress," says Olga. "Clutter-to-empty ratio, for example keeping shelves half empty, can have a tremendous effect, giving us breathing room. We can create more breathing room by borrowing a few concepts from the Japandi design style."

Start small by decluttering your book collection and finally build to a bigger task, like decluttering the bathroom to gradually streamline your home over the course of a few weekends.

6. Consider an alternative layout

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (6)

(Image credit: Getty Images | Morsa Images)

Consider rearranging the furniture to transform the aesthetic in any room. ”Flow into and around a room is also crucially important, and this is especially relevant in creating a relaxing space," says Zoe. “Sinuous lines are really important in feng shui to help you feel comfortable and relaxed; create a winding path through the room by arranging furniture in a way that takes you on a journey through the room, rather than directly from door to seat."

"Couches, console tables, bookcases as well as low floor cushions and poufs can help to direct this flow. Carefully placed floor rugs also help to zone different spaces in a room and encourage people to walk in a certain path."

“When choosing your seating placement in the room, be mindful of backs exposed to open areas and doorways," warns Zoe. "The best arrangement is where the seats most used have strong back support, meaning ideally a solid wall or at least chairs with tall backs – carvers or tall armchairs are great for this in the more exposed areas of the room. Do this to help you feel safe and secure."

Sophie adds her style tip: "Arrange your room around the windows, try not to cover them with heavy drapes or furniture." The concept is to draw your eyes to the light and views beyond. “Beautiful views from the room are vitally important," says Zoe, "as they activate the fortuitous energy in a room, and soften any negative."

7. Flood rooms with light

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (7)

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(Image credit: Getty Images | 10'000 Hours)

Seeking natural light is the most important aspect when looking at how to combat SAD (seasonal affective disorder) so it makes perfect sense that to create a happier, more grounding home environment you need to utilize light.

"Bright and airy spaces are generally considered best in feng shui, for abundance to prosper and to allow the space for people and relationships to come into your life," explains Zoe.

"Natural light is crucial," agrees Dan. " A lack of sunlight affects many, especially in the shorter days of winter. To solve this without breaking the bank, consider rearranging your room for the winter months. Move your desk toward a window or re-orient a favorite reading chair into the sun, and don’t be afraid to uncover that outdoor furniture on a warm-enough day.”

"If you don’t have an abundance of natural light, create lighting that imitates it," suggests Sophie. "Downward spotlights are great at flooding a room with brightness, but they can feel a little harsh. Mix it up with lamps in the darker corners, wall lights, and even hanging pendant lights to create warmth and coziness."

8. Welcome nature indoors

The secrets to creating a stress-free home environment, according to experts (8)

(Image credit: Getty Images | Liudmila Chernetska)

There's a reason sage green and forest green have both been hugely significant interior color trends in recent years – they provide a calming backdrop in our homes to balance our busy lives. The close association with nature is the main reason because nature has a calming effect on all of us.

"The natural world offers us endless inspiration for calm design," explains Olga. "a simple way to bring the outside in is to fill your space with plants. I recommend choosing a variety of Low-maintenance plants – snake plant, Monstera, ficus, bird-of-paradise, fiddle-leaf fig tree, and succulents."

"Filling your space with greenery not only literally brings the outside in but also inspires at eye level and promotes you to incorporate other nature-inspired colors, textures, and materials into your space."

If plants feel too overwhelming, start smaller. “Enliven your room with fresh flowers as a beautiful finishing touch," suggests Zoe. "They reflect the care you feel about your space."

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How can you promote a stress free environment? ›

Here are 9 tips for creating a stress-free work environment:
  1. Add personal touches. ...
  2. Keep your workspace clean and organized. ...
  3. Learn to handle or ignore interruptions. ...
  4. Adapt to changes. ...
  5. Add plants to your desk, office or cubicle. ...
  6. Be a good communicator. ...
  7. Incorporate relaxation exercises into your work day.
Nov 18, 2013

What are the 5 A's of stress management? ›

For adults, Maness suggests the “5 A's” in order to deal with stress and anxiety. The A's stand for Avoid, Alter, Accept, Adapt, and Assert. “Avoid alcohol and drugs,” suggests Maness, “Alter your schedule so you have time to eat healthy, exercise, relax and sleep.

What are the 4 A's of stress management? ›

When deciding which option to choose, it's helpful to think of the four A's: avoid, alter, adapt or accept. Since everyone has a unique response to stress, there is no “one size fits all” solution to managing it.

How can you create a positive environment at home? ›

Simple Tips to Create a Positive and Peaceful Home Environment
  1. Clean out the House and take the Clutter Away. ...
  2. Store the Things You are Not Using. ...
  3. Reorganise Your Furniture. ...
  4. Put Some Plants across the House. ...
  5. Try Aromatherapy. ...
  6. Play Some Music.
Jun 9, 2019

How can I live a stress free life happier? ›

How to be happier
  1. Manage your stress levels. If you have a lot of stress in your life, find ways to reduce it, such as learning a few time-management techniques. ...
  2. Enjoy yourself. ...
  3. Boost your self-esteem. ...
  4. Have a healthy lifestyle. ...
  5. Talk and share. ...
  6. Build your resilience.

How do you thrive in a high stress environment? ›

Keep meltdowns to a minimum

If you really want to thrive in a high stress environment, you need take care of your mind and your body on a regular basis. Try deep breathing exercise, mindfulness therapy, yoga, lifting weights, whatever works. Also, keep things in perspective.

What are the 3 C's of stress? ›

Kobasa introduced the concept of psychological hardiness and suggested that hardiness moderates the relationship between stressful life events and illness. Kobasa characterized hardiness as comprising of three components or the 3C's: Commitment, Control, and Challenge.

What are the 5 C's of stress? ›

The 5Cs are competence, confidence, character, caring, and connection. MASC, Multidimensional Anxiety Scale for Children.

What are the 3 P's of stress? ›

Permission, Pleasure, Presence — Your 3 Ps for Stress-less Holiday Eating.

What is the single most important thing you can do for stress? ›

Dr. William James once said, “the greatest weapon against stress is the ability to choose one thought over another.” This is the single most effective treatment you can do for managing stress – change the way you think. There isn't a drug or a diet – it's just boils down to changing the way you think.

What are the 7 steps in managing stress? ›

7 Ways to Manage Your Stress
  • Track your stressors. Use a journal to identify which situations create the most stress and how you respond to them. ...
  • Set limits. ...
  • Tap into your support system. ...
  • Make one health-related commitment. ...
  • Manage your devices. ...
  • Enhance your sleep quality. ...
  • Seek additional help.
Jun 5, 2018

What are the ABC of stress management? ›


What makes a home happy? ›

Being able to feel relaxed and calm is essential for happiness at home, in fact 90% of those most satisfied with their home say their home always or often makes them feel relaxed. When looking at which spaces can offer us the chance to switch off, research found the living room and bedroom to be most important.

What makes a healthy home environment? ›

A healthy home is

Free from lead, high levels of radon, and excess chemicals. A solid structure that keeps out pests, moisture, noise, and pollution. Safe from injuries—it has smooth floor surfaces, stair handrails, adequate lighting, and safety devices.

What are 2 tips to creating a positive environment? ›

How to Create a Positive Work Environment
  1. 1) Protect Employees Mental Health. ...
  2. 2) Look at Your Actual Working Environment. ...
  3. 3) Host Company Events. ...
  4. 4) Healthy Body = A Healthy Mind. ...
  5. 5) Create Strong Lines of Communication. ...
  6. 6) Promote Diversity. ...
  7. 7) Provide Opportunities for Career Development.

What makes a home feel peaceful? ›

In general, soft, light, neutral and natural colors are great for creating calming, peaceful spaces. Think colors like ivory, white, beige, greige, soft blue or green, natural wood tones, etc.

What promotes peace at home? ›

Rather than imputing bad motives to others, acknowledge their feelings. Keeping peace means giving each other the benefit of the doubt, showing compassion and empathy, and respecting each other's opinions. If you have wronged or offended one of your family members, take responsibility for your part in the conflict.

What things make your home pleasant to live in? ›

Simple Ways to Make Your House Feel Like Home
  • Hang art. I'm always surprised by my friends who hang art as soon as they move into a new place. ...
  • Display items that remind you of your childhood home. ...
  • Keep it clean. ...
  • Adopt a pet. ...
  • Surround yourself in softness. ...
  • Go green. ...
  • Add extra light. ...
  • Bring the spa home.
Feb 27, 2018

How do I stop putting pressure on myself? ›

If putting pressure on yourself is an issue you are experiencing, here are my top tips to help you overcome it.
  1. Remember that nobody is perfect. ...
  2. Pay less attention to what other people are saying or doing. ...
  3. Don't take on too much. ...
  4. Change the way you think. ...
  5. Accept what you can't do and ask for help if you need it.

How do you turn stress into happiness? ›

10 ways to turn stress into a positive
  1. Build a 'stress wall' During stressful periods, you might feel bombarded by stressful thoughts that trigger anxiety. ...
  2. Stop living in the world of what if… ...
  3. Focus on positive people. ...
  4. Learn to let go. ...
  5. Set a deadline. ...
  6. Be present and mindful. ...
  7. Focus on what you want. ...
  8. Be grateful.
Jun 30, 2016

Which personality type thrives in stressful environments? ›

In a nutshell, Type A refers to people who respond to stressful circumstances in an external way. These types accept challenges head-on and look for ways to manipulate their environment to direct the outcome.

What triggers environmental stress? ›

Environmental stressors are external, rather than internal, and they can often lead to increased levels of discomfort, anxiety, and aggression. Causes of environmental stress can include loud noises, weather, crowds, temperature, pollution, crime, and war.

How do Type A's handle stress? ›

In people with type A behavior, spending more quality time with family and friends, improving self-control, practicing adrenal breathing exercises, yoga and mindfulness meditation prove significantly helpful to fight stress, attain mental peace, enhance self-control, balance cortisol levels, reduce anxiety, and ...

What are the five 5 types of stress? ›

Stress factors broadly fall into four types or categories: physical stress, psychological stress, psychosocial stress, and psycho-spiritual stress.

What are the first 5 steps to managing stress? ›

5-step guide to managing stress
  1. Step 1: Identify whether you are stressed.
  2. Step 2: Identify your stressor.
  3. Step 3: Identify the reason for stressor.
  4. Step 4: Identify and apply an appropriate stress management strategy.
  5. Step 5: Evaluate.

What are the big 5 and stress? ›

While all of the “Big Five” personality traits – agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, neuroticism and openness – are related to experiencing stress, neuroticism showed the strongest link, according to research co-written by Bo Zhang, a professor of labor and employment relations and of psychology at Illinois ...

What type of personality is highly vulnerable to stress? ›

Neuroticism was strongly associated with rumination, anxiety, and depressive symptoms. People with higher neuroticism reported more stress and were more likely to have a diagnosis of clinical depression.

What causes high strung personality? ›

This can be caused by a number of things, including stress, lack of sleep, and frustration. People with high functioning anxiety are often high-strung and very tense. They may find it difficult to relax and wind down. This can lead to a spiral of fatigue and anxiety, as they feel like they have to be “on” all the time.

What personality types are prone to stress? ›

Type A behavior (hard-driving, competitive, time-urgent, hostile-irritable) has been linked to high stress levels and the risk of eventual cardiovascular problems (i.e., coronary heart disease, CHD).

What are the 6 triggers of stress? ›

There are six main areas that can lead to work-related stress if they are not managed properly. These are: demands, control, support, relationships, role and change. For example, workers may say that they: are not able to cope with the demands of their jobs.

What are the 7 sources of stress? ›

7 Unnecessary Causes of Stress (and How to Avoid Them)
  • Rehashing Stressful Situations. ...
  • Worst-Case-Scenario Thinking. ...
  • Procrastination. ...
  • Being Late. ...
  • Lurking or Oversharing on Social Media. ...
  • Clutter in Your Home or Office. ...
  • Worrying About Money You've Already Spent.
Sep 2, 2014

What are the 2 main types of stress? ›

There are two main types of stress:
  • Acute stress. This is short-term stress that goes away quickly. You feel it when you slam on the brakes, have a fight with your partner, or ski down a steep slope. ...
  • Chronic stress. This is stress that lasts for a longer period of time.
Apr 30, 2022

What are 6 ways to manage stress? ›

Ways to Reduce Stress
  • Take Short Breaks. If your work environment or your home life is the cause of your stress, take breaks. ...
  • Exercise Regularly. ...
  • Get Enough Sleep. ...
  • Eat Healthy. ...
  • Make Time for Yourself. ...
  • Don't Be Afraid to Seek Medical Care.
Jul 10, 2014

What are the 7 tips for stress management? ›

7 Tips to Avoid Stress
  • Take care of yourself. Avoid drugs and alcohol as they can add to stress. ...
  • Engage in self-relaxation. ...
  • Take breaks when needed. ...
  • Seek out social support. ...
  • Connect with others socially. ...
  • Maintain a normal routine. ...
  • Give back to others.

What is the simplest way to manage stress? ›

10 Tips to Manage Stress
  • Exercise.
  • Relax Your Muscles.
  • Deep Breathing.
  • Eat Well.
  • Slow Down.
  • Take a Break.
  • Make Time for Hobbies.
  • Talk About Your Problems.

What are the 4 personality types? ›

The four temperament theory is a proto-psychological theory which suggests that there are four fundamental personality types: sanguine, choleric, melancholic, and phlegmatic.

What are the top five things that cause you stress? ›

What causes stress?
  • Feel under lots of pressure.
  • Face big changes in your life.
  • Are worried about something.
  • Don't have much or any control over the outcome of a situation.
  • Have responsibilities that you find overwhelming.
  • Don't have enough work, activities or change in your life.
  • Experience discrimination, hate or abuse.

What Big 5 trait is emotional stability? ›

Neuroticism is a personality trait that refers to your emotional stability.


1. How to reduce stress with the 2:1 breathing technique
(Tufts Medical Center)
2. The Secret to becoming a stress-free CRA | Ep28
(Huxley Morton)
3. Stress Relief : Secret Yoga How To Reduce Stress | Dr. J9 Live
(Dr. Janine Bowring, ND)
4. How to Manage Stress? | Sadhguru
5. Workplace Mental Health - all you need to know (for now) | Tom Oxley | TEDxNorwichED
(TEDx Talks)
6. Do You Know If Your Home Is Harboring Stress Triggers? | The Home Environmental Medicine Show
(Greg from Ambitious)


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