This is the seventh installment of our eight part series on holistic health.
Throughout your everyday life, you spend time in a variety of environments. This includes your home, workplace, car, the grocery store, restaurants, or the homes of friends and family members.
Each of these places elicits unique emotions and has an impact on your mental state; some spaces may evoke positive sensations, while others may induce stress or discomfort. This is what we call Environmental Health.
While altering public environments may not be entirely feasible, there are several measures you can take to enhance your experience and promote environmental health within your personal surroundings.
Think of the spaces where you spend the most time, such as your room, kitchen, or desk. What changes can you make within them to elevate your well-being?
The Psychology of Environmental Impact
The connection between your surroundings and well-being is well-established. Different environments can influence our mood, productivity, creativity, and stress levels in different ways.
For example, think about the environments in which you are most productive. I’m willing to bet you get more work done when you are able to focus. This could be somewhere that’s naturally quiet and somewhat secluded, or you could create that environment for yourself by minimizing distractions and utilizing headphones.
On the other hand, a loud, chaotic environment likely has a negative impact on your ability to get things done.
By recognizing the impact of your surroundings, you can consciously work towards curating spaces that foster positive experiences and contribute to your overall sense of well-being.
Creating a Positive Home Environment
A home serves as a sanctuary, providing a space of comfort and relaxation. To elevate your Environmental Health, identify the elements that evoke positive emotions in your home, such as listening to music or engaging in hobbies, and consider integrating these elements into areas outside of your home as well.
For instance, if you find solace in wearing headphones and listening to music while relaxing in your room, you can replicate the practice in the bustling environment of a grocery store to create a more tranquil experience.
The Importance of a Clean and Organized Space
Removing clutter and maintaining cleanliness is essential for environmental health. Cluttered surroundings often translate to a cluttered mind, leading to increased stress and reduced productivity.
Take control of the areas within your jurisdiction, such as your workplace or office, and ensure they are organized and clutter-free. By doing so, you create an environment that promotes focus, reduces stress, and enhances overall well-being.
Promoting Environmental Health in the Workplace
The impact that your work environment has on your well-being should not be underestimated; a positive and well-organized workspace positively impacts both productivity and morale.
Put this into practice by taking small steps such as decluttering your desk, personalizing your space with meaningful items, or incorporating indoor plants to improve air quality. These actions can foster a sense of tranquility and creativity, leading to increased job satisfaction (aka occupational health) and overall well-being.
Optimizing Your Commute
For many, daily commutes in cars or public transportation can be a significant source of stress. Consider ways to alleviate this stress and improve your environmental health during these journeys.
Optimize your commuting experience by curating relaxing playlists, practicing mindfulness exercises, or listening to informative podcasts. These initiatives can help transform an otherwise mundane experience into a positive and fulfilling one.
Prioritizing Environmental Health in Public Spaces
While we may not have direct control over public environments, you can still influence your experience within them.
Each time you step into a grocery store, restaurant, or a friend’s house, you have the power to create a positive impact. By practicing mindfulness and adopting a perspective of gratitude, you can appreciate the positive aspects of these spaces, fostering a more enjoyable experience.
Environmental health plays a crucial role in overall well-being. By acknowledging the influence of your surroundings, you can actively work towards creating positive environments in your home, workplace, car, and the public spaces you utilize.
Implementing simple practices such as decluttering, organizing, personalizing, and curating your surroundings, can help to reduce stress, boost productivity, and enhance overall quality of life!