Updated: May 12, 2020
Covid-19. Never in history have we been collectively “chained” to our homes like this.. Never in history have we spent so much time at home.
Home has always been an important part of our lives but now more so than ever. And if you’re not happy at home, you’re going to be even more miserable now.
Your home is not exactly a house of torture.
It’s the little things that slowly get to you. Piles of clutter, unfinished chores, children interrupting your work, a demanding spouse, too little space… it’s a long list.
What do you do? How can your home become your sanctuary, a reservoir of peace that you can tap into every time and feel better no matter what’s happening in the world outside?
This post will show you how to make your home a happier place. A paradise on earth.
Table of Contents
1. Be Happy with Yourself
2. Make Your Family Happy
3. Be Happy with the Home You Have
4. Make Your Home Cheerful
5. Make Your House a Home
6. Cook with Love
7. Enjoy Your House
8. Get Enough Rest
9. Use Natural Scents
Let’s start with the first and most important step…
#1 Be Happy with Yourself
Were you expecting a home makeover as the first step? Sorry to disappoint but you need the truth.
Buying things to make your house look better is not the answer. Science shows that consumerism is the biggest suppressant of happiness.
The truth is, most of what’s wrong with your external environment is a result of what’s happening inside of you. It depends on the story you’re telling yourself everyday.
You’re the master craftsman who is building your reality. Every thought, emotion, and perception is a building block of this reality. You have complete control over the production of these building blocks.
So what’s the story you’re telling yourself? Are you a helpless individual in a world that’s full of mean people out to ruin everything you do? Or are you a powerful individual with the means to forge strong relationships in a beautiful world?
Whatever you tell yourself, you’re right. As Henry Ford once said:
“Whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right”
So how do you change the story you tell yourself? How do you become happy with yourself?
The simplest and fastest way is to have a gratitude journal. Everyday, first thing in the morning, write down all the things that you’re grateful for. Do this consistently, and you’ll find yourself becoming happier.
In a study that asked participants to briefly write on different topics every week, one group was asked to write about things they were grateful for. Another group was asked to write about anything that made them unhappy. The last group was asked to write anything that came to mind with no particular emphasis.
Unsurprisingly, the group that wrote about gratitude became the most optimistic and felt better about their lives in as little as 10 weeks. They were also healthier.
Need I say more? Start a gratitude journal today.
When you’re happy, you have the capacity to spread joy and you should start with the next most important group of people.
#2 Make Your Family Happy
I’m going to let you in on a big productivity secret: you work best when your family is happy.
If your relationship with your spouse, or children, or parents is an unhappy one, you are likely to be emotionally drained. When you’re emotional, you cannot perform at work.
You will also not look forward to coming home or being at home.
One of the first things my mentor focused on in my life was my relationships at home. I couldn’t understand his particular attention to this area in my life. I wanted him to help me perform better at my work but instead we spent a lot of time talking about my family relationships. Frustrated, I asked him why.
“If you’re not happy at home, you’ll never be productive at work,” he said.
As I began tracking my performance, I saw the correlation between productivity and happiness at home. Most of us are ignorant of this relationship.
But how are some people able to have beautiful, happy relationships at home while others struggle with it? Why, you wonder, is it so difficult to maintain happy relationships at home?
That’s just the nature of relationships. Beautiful, happy families don’t just happen by chance. Love is not something that simply happens to people. At least not in the long run.
It is a deliberate, disciplined, and conscious effort. It requires time and attention.
Start by putting away your smartphones and tablets. Plan time for your family. Be deliberate and disciplined. Track how much time you spend with them and make sure you’re striking a balance.
Write down your issues with family members. Work on those issues. It will be hard. But the reward will be well worth it. You’ll have a happier home and look forward to coming back to it everyday.
#3 Be Happy with the Home You Have
The grass is always greener on the other side.
Your home could be bigger. It could be in a better neighborhood. It could be on a higher floor. It could be landed. It could be many things..
Upgrade your home, and after a while you’ll find a new list of things it could be. It never ends. The idea that a newer, better house will make you happier is an illusion. The initial euphoria of having a better house will wear off.
So, stop comparing your home to other houses. Stop looking for what could be and enjoy what is. You’ll instantly feel happier.
Is being content the same as being complacent? No. You don’t have to stifle your ambition or your desire to uplift yourself. Ambitions and dreams are good. Plan out your ambitions. Work hard towards achieving them.
But live in the present.
And stop comparing.
#4 Make Your Home Cheerful
Ever noticed how gloomy houses look like in the movies? Or ever noticed how gloomy houses are described in books?
They’re always dark and dull.
The fastest way to bring cheer into your house is to let in the sunlight. Throw back your curtains, open your windows, remove anything that’s blocking the light from coming in.
Ensure all your window areas are clean and uncluttered.
Gloomy houses are also full of things. So, declutter. You don’t need all those things you’re hoarding. When was the last time you used them anyway?
Where do you start or how do you go about doing this? One lady has a fantastically effective method that became a Netflix hit. It’s called the KonMari method.
The main premise of Marie Kondo’s KonMari method is that you tidy your house by category, not by location. So instead of trying to tidy room by room, do it by categories like clothes, food, papers etc.
Discard all items that no longer spark joy. Believe me, plenty of items will fit this category.
The KonMari method or a minimalist approach, is liberating. You’ll bring joy into your home. Instantly.
Consider adding color to your house too. Aesthetically. A flurry of bright colors can be jarringly painful. Avoid gaudy. What you want are a few highlights. Fresh flowers can do this wonderfully. They never fail to bring joy.
#5 Make Your House a Home
Ever heard the saying, “Home is where the heart is?”
A house is defined by its physical attributes. A home is whatever you make out of it. This means that a home is distinguished from a house through deliberate, conscious effort. Sound familiar?
You’ll find that deliberate and conscious effort is a prerequisite for meaning in anything you do.
Therefore, pay attention to your home.