Why Neutral Rooms Can Make you Unhappy
If you go on pretty much any home decor blog you're bound to see a bunch of neutral rooms. After all neutral rooms are said to make you calmer, they're easy to decorate (everything matches!) and they fit with the current trends (which many people take as gospel).
I do agree that neutral furniture and accent pieces in a room bring a certain element of calmness especially when they are textured. It's just that when everything is neutral that I think people run into trouble without realizing it.....
You see, neutral colors calm you because there's an absence of color and color evokes emotion.
You'll also notice that neutral rooms tend to mix white and beige....which is also important. Too much white makes a room feel cold, while beige has enough brown (which reminds us of the earth) to make us feel grounded.
For short periods of time neutral rooms can be great especially if you have a stressful life. They calm and ground you. The problem is that if you perpetually live in a neutral space then you're sending your subconscious a message that your life should be devoid of emotions.
This may sound crazy to you at first...but let me tell you a little story. When I was 16 my house burned down. At the same time my home life wasn't particularly stable. I worked long hours at a clothing store and then at a restaurant after school to spend time away from home. So when we rebuilt our house and I got to decorate my room I chose to paint my walls a rich brown and picked out white and beige furniture. At the time it was just what I needed because what I wanted was to simply block out all emotion....because the emotions within my self and around me were not really very pleasant. The thought of color in my room brought on a feeling of panic. I didn't want anything that reminded me of joy or happiness because in my mind it just reminded me of something that I wasn't allowed to have...so the thought of seeing it in my everyday life made me anxious.
When I went to college and started living in big cities I still gravitated towards neutrals in my room, but I began to paint using brilliant and rich color schemes....in retrospect my soul wanted to express joy but I had developed a habit of numbing myself.
Fast forward 20 years and I find myself happier than I have ever been ...and I can't even imagine having a single room in my house without color.
So why do I think that Neutral Rooms make People Unhappy?
Well, because they create a daily habit of suppressing emotion. Put simply, they make us numb.
What we surround ourselves with and what we see everyday deeply impacts our subconscious and therefore our mood...so when we purposely avoid placing items in our rooms that evoke any strong emotions then we're sending ourselves a strong message....don't feel...
And a lot of people do this. It makes sense. After all we live in a culture that teaches us to suppress our emotions...to just pretend that everything is okay...and to just go along with the status quo.
If this is resonating with you then I have a way out....
How Color can Make you Happier
Now I'm not promoting that we rise up against neutrals and replace every piece of furniture and artwork with something super colorful. What I am proposing is that if you have a neutral room then slowly integrate a little color. Add some pretty throw pillows. Buy a beautiful piece of artwork with colorful accents. Buy an accent chair upholstered in your favorite color. Add a few green house plants. Buy a colorful new duvet cover. To help you do this, check out my post - How to Bring Inspiration & Life to a Boring Neutral Room.
It's the balance that is important ....because you still want to have a room that feels grounded but you also want to feel inspired in your home. If you're still reading this post then you're probably craving positive emotions in your everyday life....and adding color that you love to your spaces will certainly do this.