The importance of creating an intimate environment that includes Mother Nature is something personal for me and many other people who suffer from seasonal affective disorder during the long winter months of the north. If you live in northern climates, you probably already know about the seasonal ups and downs.
In fact, during the 1980s, I lived in Anchorage (and still carry the Alaskan spirit with me wherever I go.) Oregon, which is my home state, is in a northern climate too. But, although it’s milder than Canada or Alaska, it’s still a great breeding ground for the seasonal affective disorder during winter.
Alaskan businesses wised up decades ago and routinely install full-spectrum lighting in their office buildings to help their employees and customers avoid seasonal affective disorder. Alternatively, it’s been my experience in Oregon that businesses are slow to get the point – to say the least. But, full-spectrum lighting is not the only way to lower your risk for depression during the long winter months ahead.
I’ve gleaned the internet in search of easy ways to add Mother Nature to your intimate environment in your home. Here are a few examples for your information and inspiration.
① Create Your Own Meditation Space Full of Your Treasures
If you’re lucky enough to have a spare room, I suggest that you designate it as your meditation room. Fill it with your most treasured and heartfelt items along with candles, greenery, crystals, flowers, and moving water. Also, try out some healing music meditation time for yourself. I keep it playing the background on most days – it seems to give my entire home a feeling of peace and pleasantness.
A neutral color scheme is both relaxing and emits a feeling of serene happiness with the natural light flowing through the room to lift your spirits. But don’t feel limited to light tans and greys. Let your spirit soar with the colors that enliven your life! To learn more about the effects of color on our lives, click through this link to keep learning.
② Add a Norfolk Pine Tree for Year-round Enjoyment
The Norfolk Pine Tree is at the top of my list for year-round enjoyment. Sold at home supply stores in the garden department, you’ll find them growing in their own pots. Take one home for the holidays and continue to enjoy it long after the sparkling snowflakes are packed away. The aromatic essence of the Norfolk Pine is yours year-round when you bring this tree home to stay.
You may grow your Norfolk Pine at normal room temperature but they’ll be healthier if you keep them in a space that is about 65° f while you keep them a few degrees cooler at night. However, never let them sit in temperatures below 50 degrees. Keep them in bright and natural light, but never place them in direct sunlight. Trim and turn your Norfolk Pine frequently to maintain its delightful symmetry.
③ Experience Waterfalls • Tealights • River Rocks
How wonderful it is that something so natural is also so soothing. This terrific little element combines candlelight and a 3-tiered desktop waterfall. It’s easy to dress this antiqued bronze for any seasonal event.
Additionally, you might set it by a green plant or keep it on your bedside meditation table for the daily joy of listening to the flowing, falling water.
④ Bring the Wonderful Sounds of Nature Inside
Put your feet up and put the headphones one while you feel the stress leaving your body as you listen to the soft rains and gentle winds through a forest. The sounds of a forest is a perfect way to relax and bring Mother Nature into your home and this Forest Ambience CD is no exception.
Another plus to this sound technique is that it drowns out annoying sounds like not-so-distant freeways. Plug this into a portable speaker and set it beside your desktop waterfalls or plants for a layered natural sound effect.
⑤ Bring in the Essential Oils for Dreamy Fragrances
Essential oils have been in use by humans for thousands of years. In fact, the ancient Greeks and Egyptians left us writing describing the use of exotic essential oils. But, essential oils are not just for a nice fragrance in the home. Rather, throughout their rich history, essential oils helped to heal and balance our overall well-being. And, that is exactly what they do today!
Personally, I like to use essential oils to help ease my symptoms of stress and depression and I can attest that essential oils are one of the nicest parts about healing in my life. So, I heartily recommend that you do research into the oils that are right for you. However, if you’d like an easy introduction, please click through this link for a list of essential oil and guidelines to their uses.
⑥ Fill Your Office Space Full of Greenery!
During the long winter months, especially in the Northern climates, when you’re getting up when it’s dark to go to work and then when you get off work, it’s dark again. Oh my gosh! You need plants in your cubicles, desks, and offices at work. Start with something simple and build from there. Some variety of plants actually do well under office lights, so start with those.
Mother Nature takes over as plants of all types are able to filter toxic substances from the air through their leaves. Incredibly, some plants even absorb the most toxic gases such as formaldehyde, benzene, and carbon monoxide. It’s easy to see why this makes healthy house plants one of the best air filters money can buy. Learn more about greenery in your intimate environment!
In 1989, NASA environmental scientist B.C. “Bill” Wolverton published a report that looked towards the future of energy-efficient buildings and addressed the need for a way to remove pollutants from indoor air without increasing ventilation with outdoor air. (This stemmed from the need to address the lack of fresh air exchange in space stations.) His solution was to add a significant amount of houseplants to the indoor area, stating in his report that “plants can play a major role in the removal of organic chemicals from indoor air” (Wolverton, 1989).VIA Molekule
⑦ LightBox for Relief of Depression
Among other tactics, lighting is important – it’s one of our basic human requirements. However, there are other elements to use in the interior of your home that help you and your family rise above the winter blues. Ten years ago, these lightboxes cost around $300 per box! Now, you can get one that works great for under $50. Plus, there is a huge variety from which to select. That’s a win-win for everyone!
I sincerely hope this information gives you excellent ideas of your own to get through those long winter months with a light step and a resilient attitude. I wish you the most stress-free holiday season ever. Blessings to you and those you serve.