Whether you specialize in interior design or you work as a photographer or painter, creativity is a muse you probably do all in your power to protect. Recent studies have shown that lifestyle choices do indeed affect our ability to work and create. For instance, a study published in PLOS showed that when you listen to happy music, you can enhance divergent creativity. Good sleep, yoga, and taking steps to reduce stress can improve your work performance, but so can something as simple as the air you breathe. Your work can be seen as the result of your innate talent, mood, and state of body and mind. They all work together to enable you to enter ‘the zone’ as you pen the ideas of your next beautiful home project.
A 2019 study by the National University of Singapore showed that prolonged exposure to polluted air reduced worker performance. The researchers measured how many items each employee produced in the textile interview. The results showed that an increase in exposure to fine particles of pollution led to a reduction in daily output of 1%. “The effects are subtle but highly significant,” said researchers. Another study by researchers at Columbia University found that ozone levels have significant negative impacts on work productivity. Ozone pollution continues to be a major global issue. This means that stricter regulations need to be adopted if health and productivity are to be protected.
If you think that homes are generally less polluted than the air outside, think again. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has found that many homes are between two and five times as polluted as the air outside. Culprits include wood pressed furniture, flame retardants in soft furnishings, and harsh cleaning products — and other items that can emit unseen, unperceived fumes and volatile organic compounds.
Whether you work from home or an office, there are many steps you can take to improve your indoor air quality. The first is to start at a structural level. Vents and other air openings should be fitted with air filters. Many studies have shown that filters can significantly improve air quality. One study published in the Current Allergy and Asthma Reports indicates, for instance, that air filtration is key in homes, especially for those with allergic respiratory disease. Another study published in Lung India showed that air filters reduced indoor fine particle concentrations by 60%. In addition to vent filters, you can also place HEPA filters in various areas in your home. These filters are capable of trapping particles as small as 0.3 microns.
You can also make a series of simple changes. Including cleaning with a steam vacuum instead of bleach and other toxic compounds. You can slowly replace pressed wood furniture, and exchange carpets for wooden flooring. Think of ways to keep your home clean with natural methods products such as lemon juice, essential oils, baking soda, and vinegar. These are often just as effective as commercial products and they are usually very cheap to make.
If you love design, photography, and other arts, treat your muse kindly by ensuring your indoor air quality is optimal. Poor air can affect your productivity and mood. Make a few inexpensive changes and as time goes on, think of bigger projects that are necessary to turn your home into an oasis of health.