Rewilding your home

This challenge places much importance on spending time outdoors connecting with the natural world, mainly because in our modern lives we can’t avoid spending most of our days (and nights) indoors. During work, school, sleep, and during cold or stormy weather we simply have to accept that some of our lives are going to be spent inside. However there is much we can do to bring more wildness into our homes and indoor spaces in a healthy way and receive some great benefits from doing so.

Today’s Challenge: Do at least one thing to help “rewild your home”. Here are some ideas on ways you can do this:

1. Add more plant life – Adding more living plants in and around your home is a simple way of increasing the amount of oxygen inside your home, especially if you live in a cold climate and can’t leave windows open year-round. Plants also help to clean the air, acting as a natural air filter. Some varieties of plants do this better than others, especially tropical ones. Plants also help increase the amount of greenery you see which has been shown to improve your mood and energy. If you’re not one who easily remembers to water your plants, or you’ve had bad luck with them in the past, choose hardy plants that don’t require much water like cacti, Jades, and other types of plants that do well indoors.

2. Decorate with objects from nature – If you find any interesting or beautiful objects in nature that you can take with you in a respectful way, you can place them around your home to bring more nature inside. Natural objects like stones, crystals, feathers, shed antlers, bones, shells, driftwood, and dried leaves make nice things to have around. I like to have a smooth stone on my desk I can hold in my hand while I’m working and thinking. Don’t just think about objects to look at. You can engage your whole sensory experience with objects you can touch, smell, or even hear.

You can arrange objects in an artful way on a shelf, window sill, or table, creating an altar dedicated to the wild. I find this an enjoyable way of displaying some of the treasures I’ve found while making my home feel more like a natural space. See each object also reminds me of when and when I found it, though I can’t remember all of the after awhile. Sometime I come home after an adventure with pockets full of interesting things I’ve found.

3. Be wildlife friendly – It’s not recommended to give wildlife too much of a helping hand and de-sensitize them to Humans, however you can do things that help attract wildlife to your home in mutually beneficial way. It’s always nice to see birds out you window and you can increase bird activity and attract many varieties of local and migratory birds by setting up bird feeders with seed, humming bird feeders, and bird baths or pond.

Note: Please make sure to read up on what is best to feed the birds in your area and how to do so in a way that is safe and healthy for them. We wouldn’t want to unintentionally harm these sensitive creatures.

You can also attract more wild friends by planting flowers that invite bees, butterflies, ladybugs, and hummingbirds!

4. Bring the seasons inside – Depending on where you live, your environment may go through distinct seasonal changes. Decorating your home with these seasonal colors and items really helps to get your indoors more in tune with what is happening in the outdoors. In the Spring and summer you can bring fresh or dried flowers in, in the Fall you can decorate with dried leaves, wild nuts, or seasonal foods like squash and pumpkin, in the Winter you can create wreaths from wild plants and hang them in an area of your home you will see often.

5. Bring more natural lighting into your home – Natural light is very important to our health and well being. Artificial lighting often doesn’t replicate the natural spectrum of light from the sun. Open your curtains or blinds as much as possible and let the sun shine in! Natural light cycles from sunrise to sunset help our circadian rhythm, improving our sleep, mood, and energy levels. Try to turn lights off after sunset or switch to warmer toned lighting like the light from a candle. If you use electronics like a cellphone or laptop at night you can try the app called f.lux, which is a free app that reduces the amount of blue light from the screen that goes into our eyes. It subtly adjusts the color of your screen automatically throughout the day to be more in tune with the color of light as the angle of the sun changes. It may make your screen look a little different, but it helps you wind down easier at night and fall asleep quicker. A better option is to stop any screen time in the evening and read a book or work on a relaxing activity like stretching, drawing, playing music, crafting, carving or any other hobby you enjoy.

What other ways can you think of to rewild your home? Do you have any special ways you do this already?

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