Meditation isn't just calming; it's life-changing.
The practice has been proven to protect your immune system, safeguard your brain and alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. And you don't need to visit a special retreat center -- or even a special room -- to meditate. You can do it every day... at home.
"You can set up a meditation space anywhere," Emily Henderson, a home style expert with Target, told The Huffington Post. "It's just a quiet space that enables you to physically and mentally remove yourself from the stress of everyday life."
In fact, HuffPost recently revamped our in-office meditation space:
The makeover came with help from Henderson and interior designer Joshua Smith. They've pointed out five easy elements that, when incorporated into your own home, will transform your space into a meditative oasis:
1. Opt for calm colors.
Embellish your meditation spot in cool and neutral tones like blues, greens and light purple. "Even soft pink has been shown to have a soothing effect," Smith says.
2. Add candles.
Natural light from a window is ideal for meditation, Henderson says. If that's not possible in your space, then choose indirect, soft candlelight for a similarly calming sentiment.
3. Feature important objects.
"Incorporate items that help you to connect and lift your spirits," Smith says. "They could be objects found in nature, a picture or even meaningful quotes. You can also place a symbol of your religious or spiritual practice if that applies." An oversized hourglass, for example, doubles as a design statement.
4. Find comfortable cushions.
Comfort is key to meditation. Make the most of your space and add a bit of ceremony to the experience by meditating on a floor cushion that stows under your bed when not in use.
5. Use a table or "altar."
Any surface -- even a bedside table -- can serve as a place for the important objects, fresh flowers or candles that center your focus during a meditation session, Smith says. Visit your altar each time you meditate to let your brain know it's time to practice.
Voilà! You're meditating at home!
(Photos by Damon Dahlen, art by Abigail Williams)