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We all know that our environment can affect the way we feel, from sunny weather helping to put a smile on our face to a cluttered office contributing to our sense of disorganisation. However, it now appears that we can actively impact the way we feel simply by getting our decorating hat on and applying the principles of neuroarchitecture.

Explaining how this works, Eve Edelstein, PhD, adjunct professor at the New School of Architecture & Design in San Diego and a research consultant to the Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture (ANFA), says: "The premise is to consider how each feature of the architectural environment influences certain brain processes such as those involved in stress, emotion, and memory."

Here are just a few ways experts in the field suggest you can create a happy home:

Put a personal stamp on your home

Seeing evidence of your own work, achievements or values around your home can help to make you feel more grounded, and this could include anything from a bookshelf filled with your favourite hardbacks to framed photographs of family and friends.

Create a sense of calm in your kitchen

Creating a kitchen design that faces in the direction of your family, e.g. that opens up into the living room or faces the door, is said to help you feel safer, as you have a greater connection to those around you. This will also help to produce oxytocin, the bonding hormone, and serotonin, associated with a positive mood.

A window to the world

Large windows, such as timber sash windows, or a balcony in a room can help to lift your spirits. Explaining further, John Zeisel, PhD, who serves on ANFA's board of directors, said: "Just being able to see how the weather is and knowing what's out there relaxes people and makes them feel more in control."

Go crazy for curves

When it comes to feeling relaxed and upbeat in our homes, experts say that soft, curved edges work every time and this can apply to counter tops, furniture and cabinets. However, this does not mean a blanket ban on all sharp edges.

The Sash Window Workshop offers a redecoration service for timber windows and doors.  For more information, or to obtain a no obligation quotation, please contact us on: 01344 868668.

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