Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, people spent an average of 22 hours indoors every day. That’s 90 percent of their day. Because of these numbers, VELUX collaborated with individuals and organizations all over 41 countries to start the “Indoor Generation” campaign. The goal of the campaign is to encourage people to get a healthy dose of natural light and fresh air.
With the “new normal,” the profile of the indoor generation is actually doing the world well. Today, staying at home is the best course of action.
The downside, though, is apparent—especially in terms of mental health. Going out meant being able to see other people, and the support, empathy, and the mere presence of other people contribute to better handling of stress. Aside from this, being surrounded by nature has several health benefits, like getting adequate Vitamin D, productivity, better sleep, etc.
Because the presence of other people near you is not much of a good thing at the moment, what you can do is surround yourself with nature instead. The good thing is that current and long-time trends have allowed for this to happen.
Houseplants—or an Indoor Jungle
In the past couple of years, younger generations have been fond of houseplants. You’ll see them everywhere, especially on Pinterest and Instagram. According to the National Gardening Survey, 29 percent of gardening households have a Gen Z or a Millennial plant parent.
Because of this, online shops have been selling plants, and artists have been customizing pots to also sell online. Without fail, these items gain traction because of the support from younger generations because they are easier to take care of than children, and plants provide mental health benefits. Simply put, plants fit the character profiles of younger generations.
As a result, plants are everywhere in their homes, and there’s no stopping you from doing so, too. At the top of a shelf, you can place a vining plant to let it grow as long as it could. You can also let them vine on wooden balustrades, weaving them into the spaces until they fill the gaps. If you have an empty corner in your place, a huge potted plant can fill it up—just make sure that it can receive adequate sunlight. For a mini-garden effect, a table right in front of the window would do. Fill it with pots and plants, then talk to them every morning.
Wood Is Not Just About Timelessness and Elegance
The presence of wood in interior design beats the odds. They’re present in your grandparents’ homes, may it be through antiques, ceiling, moldings, and whatnot. Wood has also made its way to modernist homes. Now, you’ll see the pairing of black, gray, white, and wood in kitchens, staircases, and floors. Rustic homes also pair wood accents with cement—that’s how versatile this material is.
Wood in your home is nature melding into a concrete structure. It’s a good and sneaky way to integrate nature indoors. It doesn’t cause disturbances as long as it’s situated correctly. Everyday maintenance won’t be a problem, although periodic upkeep is necessary to control scratches and marks.
Open the Blinds and Curtains
The one thing that you can freely welcome into your home in this “new normal” is natural light. Just because you’re indoors doesn’t mean you should close yourself off from the views from your window. Welcoming sunlight into your home saves you energy from using your home lighting for the extra hours of the morning. Natural light in your home also gives you the chance to reap its health benefits—for free. By simply opening the blinds or curtains, you can enjoy these benefits:
- The skin absorbs Vitamin D from sunlight. This particular vitamin helps keep stronger bones as well as reduces the chances of heart disease and cancer.
- When you’re exposed to sunlight, you’re less likely to feel the effects of seasonal depression because exposure to sunlight improves mood.
- The body also receives time signals from sunlight, as it regulates your circadian rhythm. As a result, you’ll have a better chance of getting a good night’s rest at the correct time.
- In the workplace, exposure to natural light and views of the outdoors reduces eyestrain, headaches, and drowsiness. As a result, employees become more productive and have a healthier work environment.
Nature is a part of humans’ lives as much as humans are a part of nature. During quarantine, don’t deprive yourself of being part of it. Even though you’re discouraged from going out, you can have little elements of nature into your home. Maybe you have them already, and you just need to look around.