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Day 13: Master Bedroom
Is your bedroom a sanctuary? If not, it should be. Most sleep experts recommend that your bedroom should be primarily for sleeping and relaxing. The room should be cool, calming and inviting. It should also be free of dust and clutter, particularly for allergy sufferers.
The sad truth is that in today’s busy world, our beds often become places where we work, hang out with children and pets, eat, watch television, store things under, and do everything BUT sleep. However, proper sleep has been linked to weight loss, increased productivity, concentration and happiness, and general well-being. Ensuring your bedroom is a place where you and your partner can connect, relax and find solace and peace from the outside world is vital.
Whenever possible, bedrooms should have minimal décor and soothing colors. Bedding should be clean, dust-free and changed weekly. Pillows and mattresses are home to dust mites and should be encased in allergen-protective covers. Pillows should be washed monthly and replaced regularly (every 6-12 months is recommended.) Food (and yes, even pets) should be kept out of the bedroom. Under-bed storage should be minimal (if at all) and your bedroom should be free of electronics, piles of books and work, or anything that makes you feel uneasy.
Studies show that the ideal temperature for sleeping is 65 degrees. A fan can help ensure your bedroom stays cool as well as create white noise. Use caution with electronics in the bedroom—even the light created by an alarm clock or bedside phone can cause sleep disturbances. A small bedside table should hold a reading item, a water bottle, tissues, and little else. Lamps or soft lighting are preferred, as they help relax and prepare your body for sleep. Your bedroom should be a peaceful comforting place where you can rest soundly and awake refreshed and ready to face the day.
Objective: A relaxing bedroom sanctuary free of clutter that promotes and encourages good sleep practices.
Assess the current situation: What items do you truly need for sleep? What items can be removed from the bedroom and stored elsewhere? What do you store under your bed? What items are on your nightstand? What are your electronic, fan and lighting situations in the bedroom and how can these be improved?
1. Remove and put away any items that belong in other rooms. If necessary, use a basket to collect items, then distribute them to their proper homes. Be sure to especially focus on items that distract from sleeping.
2. Sort and declutter. Clear all flat surfaces and gather items in one place to sort and declutter.
Keep only items that:
- Pertain to sleep and bedtime
- Are calming, soothing and relaxing
- Are currently useful
- Are in good working order
- You absolutely love and want to display
Do not keep items that:
- Should be stored elsewhere
- Interfere with your sleep
- Cause you anxiety or reduce your concentration
- You don’t use
- You don’t like
- You feel obligated to keep because it was expensive
- You feel obligated to keep because it was a gift
- Are constantly in your way
3. Change bedding. Ensure that comforters, pillows and blankets are washed and clean. Replace if necessary.
4. Remove items that are stored under the bed. Under-the-bed storage can add to an overall feeling of clutter in the room. This area also tends to collect a lot of excess dust which is detrimental to healthy sleep.
5. Remove any furniture that is no longer working for your space, whether it is broken or damaged or simply not a good fit for the room. Either throw it away, donate it, or sell it on Craigslist or Facebook; then, if necessary, rearrange remaining furniture to make your layout more functional.
6. Toss unwanted items, or donate them to a local thrift shop if appropriate. Consider selling any expensive items that may be valuable on Craigslist or Facebook.
1. Traditional Elegance Work Space (RealSimple.com) 2. Contemporary Design with Practical Storage (ArchiMagz.com) 3. Simple Storage Solution (GoodHouseKeeping.com) 4. Mid Century Modern (WestElm.com) 5. Sweet Dreams Bed With Storage (HomeDesignerIdeas.com)