Why Do We Redecorate Our Homes Anyway? We Asked a Psychologist

Redecorating has its obvious perks. We know we feel happier with a changed space and, depending on what we’ve done with the space, calmer, too. But what exactly is happening in our brains when we redecorate? Why is it so important for your well-being?

We decided to find out. Ahead, psychologist Louise Cridland shares about what actually happens to you when you redecorate — and, if you haven’t any time recently, why you should.

Redecorating Can Bring You Joy

Changing our interior space is so important because not only does it bring joy, satisfaction and a sense of achievement, but it helps us feel more secure by feeling more in control of some aspects of our lives.

This has a flow-on effect, and may even help with reducing some of the anxiety we might be feeling. The satisfaction we get from changing our interior space and achieving something also works on the reward centre in our brain and helps release dopamine, one of the ‘feel good’ chemicals that lead us to feel good.

It Gives Us Novelty and Change

While this is obvious — redecorating is, of course, changing our interior space — it’s only likely only now, with many of us in lockdown and unable to experience much novelty or change, that we really understand how important change is to our lives. And, therefore, when we’re feeling like we’re living mundane lives, how important redecorating our space can be.

It Can Reflect Your Changing Interests

What many of us don’t realise or think about is that we draw a lot of psychological security from our interior space. This means, our interior space is an extension of our personal identity — what we show the world about what we value, enjoy and feel passionate about. When our interests change, it’s only natural that we want to change our environment to reflect that.

It Can Be Emotionally Cleansing

In recent years, a lot of attention has been brought to the importance of tidying up, with a clean and tidy interior space proven to be beneficial to our mental health for a number of reasons.

Looking more deeply into your interior space can be quite a spiritual and emotional process, which has been noted by Marie Kondo in her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and minimalist docu-series on Netflix.

Letting go in general can be really difficult for some people, so even letting go by donating or getting rid of possessions you no longer need anymore can be harder than it seems. Why? Because some of our possessions are linked to significant memories or to a part of our identity we may not be ready to let go of.

However, once you do let go, you realise how much space, literally and metaphorically, you have created in your own life for the things you really love and find important. Clearing and sorting your interior space promotes clarity and inspiration as you look around your home on only the things you really love and care about.

Given that we are just around the corner from spring, now is a great time to redecorate and let go of the things that no longer serve you. Whether you are into following the seasons or not, spring is a time for rebirth, and rejuvenation.

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