While physical withdrawal symptoms of withdrawal from substance misuse can be overcome quickly, the psychological symptoms can last longer. Anxiety, depression, irritability, mood changes, and sleeping difficulties, according to VeryWell Mind, can be present for years. In addition to therapy and the proper treatment, here’s how making a few changes to your living space can help.
Creating a space for hobbies
For those seeking a new and productive way to cope, making room for a hobby in your living space can present a wide variety of mental health benefits. According to Utah State University, mental health benefits of hobbies include reduced stress, enhanced well-being, improved social connection, and decreases in depression and anxiety. For those in recovery, hobbies may include those that are mindful in nature — such as journaling or yoga. With that in mind, designating a quiet part of your home to the activity is a great place to start. If your hobby is journaling, painting, or writing, setting up your desk with everything you need can help create an inviting retreat to prioritize your mental health. On the other hand, if your hobby is yoga, finding plenty of space to set up your mat and equipment can create the ideal workout zone.
Creating separation between work and play
Nowadays, having a home office or a work area that is designed to maximize productivity is essential. However, if you happen to work from home and your desk area doubles for both work and your hobby, creating separation is a must in order to create a fully stress-free and relaxing environment for your hobby. If you aren’t able to have separate areas for work and your hobby, one way to achieve this is by maintaining separation through a design feature. Adding a bookshelf, lamp, or side tables to the space can increase your work space. Utilizing storage can also help with creating boundaries between work and hobbies, which is something that can make transitioning from one to the other easier. With the help of cabinets or docking drawers, you can effectively store away your work and hobby materials with ease. This allows you to pack away whichever isn’t in use (and maintain a clear desk in the meantime). In addition to creating physical adaptations to your work/hobby space, Forbes notes that there are other ways to create boundaries between the two. Going for a walk after the workday is over, can help you to mentally make the switch from work to home by relaxing your mind through another activity.
How interior design can make a difference
When looking to ensure that your living spaces are comfortable and beneficial to your mental health during recovery, making simple interior design changes can make a huge difference. Bringing nature into the spaces is a great way to do this, and can be made simple. Bringing in a few houseplants or opening up the windows to introduce more natural lighting is a good place to start . Even getting a pet fish can be a great way to benefit mental health, as they can aid in lowering blood pressure and stress levels, as well as in improving focus and attention span. However, bringing nature into a space can also be done in other ways as well, like hanging up a picture of a natural landscape. According to one 2019 study published by the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, looking at pictures of nature can relax you as much as if you were looking at an actual nature landscape.
Recovery can be a long and daunting process, with mental health playing a large role. However, by adapting your living space in proactive ways — such as by making room for a hobby or creating subtle design changes, you can create the perfect space that is both functional and benefits your mental wellbeing
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