The Connection between Home Décor and Happiness

Have you ever noticed how your mood can drastically change based on your surroundings? When you walk into a dull and dark room, you likely feel sad, scared or depressed. However, when you walk into a room that is filled with light, color and beautiful elements, you probably feel quite the opposite; a sense of happiness and security.

Before even exploring any proof or data, most of us can agree that your surroundings have an impact on your mood. This connection between home decor and happiness has been explored by different researchers. Biologist Jonas Salk, for example, had such a strong belief in the connection of the environment and its effect on the mood that he had the famous Salk Institute (pictured below) designed to specifically promote positive moods and stimulate creativity.


Jonas Salk isn’t the only one who has indicated that your surroundings affect your mood. Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Colleen Campbell, has also focused a great amount of effort into the study of how surroundings affect the mood. She suggests that even the slightest improvements, such as adding a plant to your desk, can have a positive effect on your mood.

If you are feeling downtrodden and want to find a way to improve your mood, the solution can be as simple as making changes to your home décor.

Here are some ways in which your home decor changes can affect your mood, and make you feel happier:

Change the Color

It has long been thought that color affects the mood. Various studies have been conducted to determine this thought, and it has been found to be true. The book “The Spectro Chrometry Encyclopedia” by Dinishah Ghadiali extensively examines color psychology. This book has become a foundation for most of today’s color therapy. Color has been found to have such a huge impact on the mood that Chinese medicine has long been using color as a means of treatment.

It has been found that the color yellow can increase focus. Blue helps to promote a sense of calmness. Red and orange can be uplifting. If you are looking for a way to alter your mood, consider changing the color scheme. Use a different color on the walls, in your furnishings and in your decorative accessories.


Pic2The type of light you are exposed to also affects your mood. A study, conducted by Ohio State University’s Department of Neuroscience, found that the color of light impacts the mood greatly. This study found that rodents who were exposed to blue and white light exhibited signs of depression, while rodents who were exposed to light with red undertones experienced less of an impact to their mood.

As it applies to humans, this study suggests less exposure to blue- and white-based lights will decrease feelings of depression and anxiety. Apply these findings and suggestions to your own life. Try using lights that have warm undertones instead of cool tones to illuminate your home.

Personal Accents

Pic3HomeGoods, a supplier of home furnishings, commissioned a survey to determine the impact of decorative accents on the mood. The survey found that 93 percent of American found that the décor of a room can have an effect on mood. Adding unique and personal accessories to a space can make you feel more comfortable, and overall more at peace.

With such findings, it is no wonder why your mood can drastically change based on your surroundings. In fact, the ancient Chinese discipline of Feng Shui is based on the placement and use of decorative elements to determine happiness and health. Adding a fireplace or the peaceful sound of a water fountain is a way of incorporating luxury with a peaceful feel to a room.  If you are looking for a way to enhance your mood, consider making changes to the décor of your home.

NaomiNaomi Shaw is a freelance writer from Southern California. She covers home design and home decor trends and has been in the industry for quite some time. She is married with three children and loves to spend her free time with family.