Calm During Chaos: How To Relax At Home Using Your Senses

By Taylor Sansano

We can all agree that things are a bit chaotic right now. But that doesn’t mean our home has to be. Our personal space should be something that we can come back to after a crazy day and feel comfortable and secure. With everything else going on in the world, our home should be a sanctuary; a place of peace.

In the science of yoga, one way we’re taught to be present in the moment is to use all five senses. This is a type of mindfulness training that allows you to connect with your body and hone in on what you are feeling in the moment.

Mindfulness is a practice of being a more keen observer. Creating a peaceful and comforting environment at home allows you to more easily access a space of mindfulness —one that is specifically designed to help us live a more calm life, even amidst the chaos. 

“The space in which we live should be for the person we are becoming now, not for the person we were in the past.” — Marie Kondo

Sight

With many of us working from home right now, our physical surroundings can be a distraction. For me, when I see things out of place or things that I don’t like, I unconsciously add it to my mental to-do list of things that need to be taken care of. Here are a few ways to use sight to help you relax at home.

Highlight your favorite color

Colors have a bigger effect on our mental health than we think. Not only can it be more enjoyable to be surrounded by colors that we like (like blue or gray for me!), colors can also play a role in our moods. Blue is said to have calming effects. Green is comforting. Pink is relaxing. 

By utilizing these colors throughout your home, especially in places like the bedroom and living room, you can can create the foundation for restfulness. 

Remove any clutter

Clutter in our physical surroundings can impact our mental wellbeing. As an avid reader of The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, I might be biased in this belief, but as my mom always said: a cluttered kitchen is a clutter mind. Instead of leaving the dishes out to handle at another time or piling up books and other items around the house, fill your space with things that make you feel happy. Everything else can be put away for another day. 

“Clutter is caused by a failure to return things to where they belong. Therefore, storage should reduce the effort needed to put things away, not the effort needed to get them out.” – Marie Kondo

Sound

Sometimes, too much or not enough sound can be disorienting. Setting the mood with the right soundtrack is one of the most time-honored traditions of any host and is a key component of the practice of learning how to relax at home.

Play your favorite playlist

We all have a soundtrack that helps us feel like our highest self. When you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed, music is one thing that can help put you right back on the path to contentment. Change your mood by changing your playlist and feel yourself start to relax.

Create a meditation space

We are all hyper connected to the world around us. And while that can be a good thing for productivity and social interactions, there’s also a point where it can become too much. By creating a specific space in your home for meditation, whether it’s a room or just a small corner, you can give yourself the mind space to unwind and disconnect. This space needs to be quiet, away from distractions, and most importantly: all yours. When you visit this space you are alerting your body that it is time to relax.

Scent

In my yoga classes, one of my favorite ways to create a peaceful atmosphere is to light an incense stick (my favorite is Nag Champa). Certain types of incense are said to activate ion channels in our brain that can alleviate anxiety or depression when we smell them. And in a yoga studio, walking in with a fresh mind and heart is nearly impossible. That’s why I like the help of incense. But, there are other options too for your home!

Try essential oil

Science has shown that the part of our brain that plays a big role in regulating emotion is connected to our nose, which is why different scents can impact the way we feel. For example, the smell of brewing coffee can help lower stress hormones, without even taking a drink! Other scents that are known to help create a peaceful atmosphere include lavender, citrus, tea tree, and frankincense. 

Stop and smell the roses

Turns out: This saying your grandpa said is more important than you think! Roses offer a therapeutic smell that is said to help reduce headaches, lower blood pressure, and emit just a feeling of happiness in a home. 

Touch

Our skin is the largest organ in the body and plays a huge role in our ability to relax at home. When you surround yourself with things that are comfortable and warm, your body will instantly react in the same way. 

Tighten your muscles

Progressive relaxation is a technique used by many people struggling with anxiety or an inability to relax. It works by tensing and releasing each body part one by one, starting from the feet all the way to the crown of your head. This works by bringing mindfulness into your body parts and also focusing on releasing tension in places you might not know you’re holding tension in. 

Cuddle with a furry friend

Studies show that petting an animal can make someone feel more relaxed and optimistic. Don’t have a pet? Adorn your house with a few “furry” accents, like a throw pillow or cozy blanket. This will automatically make you feel more comfortable in your space. 

Taste

The best sense, in my opinion. With taste, pretty much anything that puts you in a good mood could be added to this list. For me, that would be Pirates Booty, cold brew, and cookie butter. But, there’s actual science behind some foods that not only make you feel good, but are good for you too. 

Eat dark chocolate

Dark chocolate isn’t only a tasty treat, it’s proven to help reduce stress and boost brain health. It’s also a rich source of antioxidants and minerals that may help fight disease in the long run, too. 

Keep your fridge stocked with mangoes

Mangoes are packed full of Vitamin B, which is crucial to maintaining hormonal balance and synthesizing dopamine and serotonin in the brain. Vitamin B can also help our bodies break down things like fats and sugars more efficiently. And if that wasn’t enough, mangoes are also thought to help with sleep! 

The Bottom Line

Make your home a more peaceful place by being mindful about what you bring into it. The more we fill our days and our lives with distraction and outside influences, the less likely we will be to truly relax and let go of the things that are holding us back from our true potential.

 

“But when we really delve into the reasons for why we can’t let something go, there are only two: an attachment to the past or a fear for the future.”  —Marie Kondo

2024 Power Life, All Rights Reserved.
Built with 🤍 by Blink Consulting

2024 Power Life, All Rights Reserved.
Built with 🤍 by Blink Wellness

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About Kirk: 

Kirk was working 80-hour weeks and wearing his shoulders as earrings when he found yoga in 2005. Forever the competitive athlete, he loved the physicality of yoga. When the spiritual and philosophical side of yoga were exposed to him, Kirk was hooked. Yoga provided him with what other activities couldn’t -- the ability to foster the benefits of practice both on and off of the mat. Yoga was something that Kirk could bring into all aspects of his life. 

Kirk knows that yoga can be intimidating, so he crafts a class that is playful and inviting, while still being challenging and safe. His creatively planned classes build strength and flexibility in your body and mind while establishing clarity, giving you more confidence to overcome obstacles in your life, and keeping you injury-free. His classes are themed with a message that is relatable and will inspire you to take it with you off your mat. Kirk has been teaching yoga since 2008 and lead his first teacher training in 2012. Where Kirk truly shines is in coaching, developing and bringing out the best in others.  

Kirk enjoys traveling (40+ countries to date!), snowboarding, and cherishes time with his wife and two daughters. 

About Christen: 

Christen Bakken’s yoga journey began in 1998 in a Bikram studio that provided a safe and secure place to practice. She saw the yoga mat as a place to remember her purpose and a place to play. As she continued her studies and began her journey to teaching in 2006, Christen infused yoga classes with devotion and the yoga mat became a place of personal transformation and healing. Her classes are filled with laughter, song, sweat, and usually heart openers. In 2013, Christen began training yoga teachers. This is the place where she finds the most joy - in community with folks looking to grow and be of greater service in their homes, on their mats, and in the world. Over the years, she has led trainings in Denver, the Midwest, Florida, and now abroad. She has trained in continuing education modules, 200-hour, 300-hour, and 500-hour programs. Beyond the mat, Christen is a passionate adventure seeker - she loves to bike, snowboard, and spend time with her husband and pups. She sees each day as a blessing and hopes to remind all who interact with her of this truth.  

Two Light Studio Parking Information

We validate parking for THREE garages in the area!

  • Two Light garage located directly north of the studio. Please bring your ticket inside for validation.

  • Three Light garage at Main and Truman. Garage entrance on Truman. Please bring your ticket inside for a validation sticker.

  • Power & Light garage at 13th and Grand. Please ask for a parking pass at the studio front desk. (Hot tip: the Power & Light garage has a ton of space! But be sure to give yourself a little extra time to walk to the studio.)

If you find that you are running a couple minutes late due to parking, please call the studio to let the instructor know to wait for you before locking the doors.

Blackstone Studio Parking

  • We have partnered with our friends at Greenslate to provide 1 hour and 15 minute validated parking for Power Life students in the lot at 36th and Harney (just south of the Cottonwood Hotel). Read below to learn how to take advantage of this perk:

    • Step 1: Scan the QR code located in the lot.

    • Step 2: Select your destination (i.e. “yoga studio”).

    • Step 3: Ask for the validation code at the Blackstone studio front desk and enter it on your phone.

    • Step 4: You are all set! Have fun at class!

    Please note:

    • The validation provided by Power Life and Greenslate is for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Need to add additional time to your parking space? You can do that conveniently from your phone!

    • This option is valid once per day per license plate.

    • Please do NOT park in the Crescent Moon lot − you will be towed!

East Village Studio Amenities

  • There is a paved lot and gravel lot on the West side of the building.

  • Meters on Court and 4th (by Peace Tree) for $0.25/hour, 9am-9pm Mon. – Sat. 12-hour max

  • Meters on 4th (to the North) for $1.25/hour. Mon – Sat. 4-hour max.

  • All meters are free on Sundays and major holidays.

Calm During Chaos: How To Relax At Home Using Your Senses Info