Setting Up Your Much-Needed “Zen Den”

Working from home? Here’s some tips from us to unwind and relax in your space.
Home is your sanctuary, but it’s typically given that status because it’s an escape from the outside world. When you’re working from home things change a little. The squeaky floorboard you used to think of as charming is starting to get on your nerves real fast.
So we’d like to suggest the idea of a “zen den,” a few tweaks that can help keep the different parts of your life stay separate under one roof. If you’re finding the need for more balance, harmony and relaxation in your life lately, we’ve got you covered. Here’s how to do it.

Clearly define how and why you’re using space.

This is a lot easier said than done, especially if you’re living in a small apartment, but as much as possible, reserve certain spaces for specific activities. If you spend all day working from bed, your brain is going to associate your bed as a place of work, not one of sleep and relaxation. Keep anything that isn’t related to sleep and other bed-based activities out of the room, full stop. Same goes for your couch and/or kitchen table. If you can swing it, find a way to set up a spot that is only for work: sit down when the workday starts, get up when the workday ends, and don’t revisit it until you need to log on again.

Keep things simple.

Seriously. You want your space to reflect the reason you’re using it, so even if you thrive on clutter, it’s important to have a dedicated space in your home where things are clean, calm and simple. I’m not suggesting you redecorate, but if possible, strip away the superfluous stuff. If you can’t see the top of your nightstand because there’s so much stuff on top, clear it off. Keep your clothes in the closet/drawers, not strewn across the foot of your bed. Opt for natural light when possible over harsh fluorescents. Avoiding excess will allow your mind to calm without being distracted by its surroundings.

Lean into natural scents.

Bring nature indoors. Not only will a DIY spray, essential oils or candles will help infuse your (maybe musty) room with fresh scents, an aromatherapy practice can work wonders on calming a racing mind and helping you relax. Start a practice of lighting a candle every night when it’s time to wind down and see how transformative a few deep inhales can be: eucalyptus is known to enhance feelings of relaxation and soothe nervous tension with it’s invigorating smell, while cedar is warming, relaxing, peaceful and will help you shut your mind off so you can drift into blissful, deep sleep.

Make baths a habit.

As someone who hated baths for most of her adult life, let me be the first to tell you how important they’ve become to me over the last few weeks. Similarly to the candle-lighting practice mentioned above, a nightly bath has become not just something to look forward to as a way to relax, but it also helps mark the end of the day.