5 Interior Design Tips to Make Your Home Feel More Relaxing

Our homes should be our sanctuaries — a retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. But you might not be reaping the full benefit of your personal domain if the space isn’t set up for relaxation. Here are five interior design tips to make your home feel more peaceful.

1. Use a soothing color palette

Try designing your home around notoriously calming colors, such as greens, blues and lavenders. Likewise, whites and warmer neutral tones might evoke a sense of rejuvenation. “Proponents of color psychology believe that the colors you use to decorate your home can have a profound effect on the emotional well-being of you and your family,” according to WebMD. For instance, being around the color blue might actually lower your heart rate and blood pressure, resulting in a greater sense of calm.

But when it comes down to it, your home’s color palette should reflect your taste. Don’t paint everything a pale green just because it’s supposed to relax you. If you hate how it looks, it probably isn’t going to bring you peace.

2. Add indoor plants

Gray lamp above wooden table near beige sofa in cozy living room interior with plants and white round rug

Adding plants to your interior decor does more than just green up the place. Besides being natural air filters and humidifiers, multiple studies have shown that being around plants has a calming effect on people. One study suggested that “active interaction with indoor plants can reduce physiological and psychological stress” after the subjects who worked with indoor plants reported feeling “more comfortable, soothed, and natural.” As long as houseplants don’t stir up any allergies for you — which obviously wouldn’t be very relaxing — try adding some to your decor for a natural calming effect.

3. Create a no-technology zone

According to the American Psychological Association, almost half of Americans are “constant checkers,” meaning they’re constantly monitoring their emails, texts, social media and more on their gadgets. Consequently, “this attachment to devices and the constant use of technology is associated with higher stress levels for these Americans.”

So a spot where you can digital detox within your home is key to a relaxing environment. The bedroom is an ideal no-technology zone, as the blue light from devices can affect your sleep. And the dinner table is another area to omit technology in favor of a relaxing meal. Whatever location you choose, help yourself stick to your no-tech promise by eliminating televisions, computers and even chargers as part of the room’s furnishings.

4. Declutter

Shelves with storage boxes, black and white folders, and green plant

If you feel like you can relax in a disorganized home, you’re one of the few. In one survey, 91 percent of the respondents said they were “overwhelmed at least some of the time by the clutter in their house.”

Luckily, HGTV offers several tips to keep your whole home organized. Some highlights include limiting the papers, magazines and other clutter that tend to pile up on flat surfaces by designating a specific drawer, bin or folder as their spot. Maximize your bathroom storage by installing a cabinet or shelving over your toilet. And there’s always the perennial tip to make your bed every day, which could lead to even more decluttering. “If you spend three minutes each morning to tuck and fold, you’ll develop a habit of keeping order in the room, which may translate into motivation for picking up the pile of clothes on the floor,” according to HGTV.

5. Tackle those projects

It’s great to take on some DIY projects around the house. After all, working with your hands can actually reduce stress and increase happiness. “When we are dissolved in a deeply absorbing task we lose self-consciousness and pass the time in a contented state,” according to Psychology Today.

But you actually have to tackle those projects to reap the benefits. If you’re tripping over paint cans for that room you keep meaning to spruce up or feeling your blood pressure rise every time you have to unstick that broken door, you probably don’t feel like you can relax in your home. Every house comes with a to-do list. Just make sure you’re keeping up with the projects and not overextending yourself, so your house feels less like work and more like a home.

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Main image credit: KatarzynaBialasiewicz/Thinkstock


Gloria p
Gloria picchetti3 months ago

It was supposed to be awful snowy in Chicago yesterday. I made a to do list. The weather was not as promised but I got a bunch of stuff done.

Caitlin L
Caitlin L4 months ago

Thanks for sharing

Ruth S
Ruth S5 months ago


Ingrid A
Ingrid A5 months ago

thank you

Leo C
Leo C5 months ago

Thank you for posting!

Kathy G
Kathy G5 months ago

Thank you

Kathy G
Kathy G5 months ago

Thank you

Elizabeth M
Past Member 5 months ago

Cool thanks for this!

Danny C
Danny C5 months ago

The technology-free zone is an excellent idea. Too many of us are wired in and need to disconnect. A good book with a cup of hot chocolate is much better than constantly checking your messages. Thank you for sharing. :-)

Chad Anderson
Chad Anderson5 months ago

Thank you.