What Can You Do You To Improve Your Surroundings?

It makes sense to arrange your surroundings to be as pleasant as possible. Are you doing that? And if so, how?

Even under normal circumstances, we spend a lot of our lifetime in just a handful of locations. And with more people than ever staying home due to the pandemic, those numbers will only become more stark.

So what, if anything, have you done to your environment with that in mind? If you think about each sense in turn, are you taking steps to address each one?

Our most-used sense is sight, and that’s also the easiest and most likely way to improve the aesthetics of where you live. Perhaps you have paint colors that are pleasing to the eye, or maybe some art hanging on the walls. Are there other things you could do to make your home look like a better place to be.

But what about the other senses? Perhaps some music you enjoy to please you hearing. Can you do anything about smell? Touch?

Spending time and effort on this might seem frivolous in today’s environment. However, there are plenty of stressors that dominate the news, like the pandemic, divisive politics, racial unrest, climate chaos, and so on. Having a place to go that soothes your jangled sense and gives you a peaceful few moments can be quite beneficial to your mental health.

What do you currently do to improve your surroundings? Could you do more?

Related questions: What makes a place feel like home? How do you perform self-care? What is your favorite sense? What is your retreat from the world?

2 thoughts on “What Can You Do You To Improve Your Surroundings?”

  1. First off, I need to acknowledge that Rebecca and I are very privileged. We own a simple home we love in a neighborhood that has and is accessible to many goods and services we love. We can make improvements to our home when we want. This is not true for so many people.

    I’ll list several simple and one big thing I could do to improve my surroundings. I do not want for much.

    • I could have low-volume, calming-ambient music playing while I work.
    • I could find ways for my home to always have good smells wafting around. Wouldn’t it be good to come into your home and always be presented with the scents of something good cooking? Sure. But that’s not practical. I guess I could have lavender oils (and other calming scents) placed throughout the home. I have to think of other scents I’d enjoy and how to get them dispersed in the air of my home.
    • I could make some picture books of my garden photos along with some text about the veggies for visitors who want to learn more about heirloom gardening — this would be a major project on my part!
    • I could drink coffee with notes of chocolate — pleasing for both the smell and taste
    • For a more substantive improvement, I could have a professional install a different, taller, more beautiful fence and gate around my garden, and perhaps my trellises should be more pleasing to the eye as well.

  2. I have to give this one some more thought.

    In general, I don’t think about it very much, which is probably true for many people as well. I imagine people who have a knack for it often end up as professional or amateur home designers, but what if you don’t have a knack for it (like me)?

    Awhile ago (pre-pandemic) it occurred to me that people rarely do much decoration of their car. Maybe there would be a bumper sticker or two. Often, there is no personalization to the inside at all, other than listening to your favorite radio station. Many people seem to have leftover fast food wrappers and such strewn about (no judgement).

    This seems odd to me, because people spend a lot of time in their car, commuting to and from work, running errands, etc. Why not make it pleasing to be there, if you spend a lot of time there?

    The conclusion I came to is that most people don’t *want* to be in their car, and so the idea of spending more time planning, decorating, and personalizing is time better spent doing something else more pleasant.

    Maybe decorating your home is similar? How many people consciously think about improving their living space?

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