As the days become shorter and nights grow longer, you may yearn for more sunshine in your apartment. Though you can’t control the weather, you can add happiness and warmth to your space by channeling all things feel-good and smile-inducing. Ward off Seasonal Affective Disorder before it begins by adding a few of the cheery objects or actions below into your home.
Add a couple of indoor plants, such as philodendrons, gardenias, laurel plants, ferns, bay leaves, gerbera daisies, bromeliads or peace lilies, to help ward off colds, increase your feeling of wellbeing, reduce carbon dioxide and filter the air. Plus, seeing something grow during the winter will make you feel happy, especially if it’s a useful herb such as rosemary.
Read more: Best Houseplants for Your Apartment
Citrusy candles and air fresheners span all seasons and provide an instant lift for your spirits. Invite the spring into your home with lemon- and fresh linen-scented candles and air fresheners with orange oil in them. You’ll feel invigorated in no time.
Read more: Spoil Your Senses at Home in Your Apartment
Not only does art enhance the visual appeal of your space, it communicates your style and even your values to visitors of your home. Art defines specific areas of your home, so the bedroom becomes calming, the living room becomes inviting and the kitchen becomes lively, and a happy home is one where each space has a unique, special purpose. Add handmade art, mementoes and photos to the refrigerator, and you’ll feel fulfilled each time you walk by.
When you bake something, particularly if it contains lemon, peppermint or almond oil or extract, you’re releasing scents used in aromatherapy that aim to soothe, invigorate and refresh. If you can’t bake or don’t have the space, harness the same feeling by purchasing candles in cozy scents of apple cinnamon, cinnamon roll, vanilla cake or pumpkin spice.
Read more: How to Grocery Shop on a Budget
Studies show that if you are hugged by your close friends and family two to four times a day, you’ll reduce your heart rate, lower blood pressure and improve your mood, which generally means you’ll be happier and more relaxed. Start your day off with hugging someone, and hug someone again when you get home from work. You may be surprised at how protected you’ll feel throughout the day.
Eat healthy food
You’ve always heard you are what you eat, so if you want to sleep better and regulate your mood, aim to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables per day, three to five servings of whole grains, two to three servings of lean protein and a tablespoon or two of good-for-your-heart fat per day.
Read more: How to Set Up a Healthy Apartment
Celebrate your space
Once you’ve decorated your space, make sure to enjoy each room for what it is. Find reasons to use your fine china and crystal, or to sip lemonade on the porch. Make your bed each morning so you’ll feel proud of your bedroom, and cook as many meals at home as possible. When you celebrate your space, you’ll love it, and you’ll feel happy in it.
Read more: How to Love the Apartment You’re In
Photo credit: Shutterstock / Brent Hofacker