Mental health is so important to our well-being, but it’s often considered an “invisible” problem. You can’t see it, like you could see a broken arm or an infected cut that needs to be bandaged and treated immediately. That’s part of the reason people tend to dismiss their own mental anguish. There are quite a few coping mechanisms that assist us through our everyday lives – and according to Paula Biazos, licensed therapist and decor enthusiast, you can help yourself create positive and relaxing moments through interior designing as well. The key is to choose something you love, that makes you feel good, and stick with it.
Paula has been born and raised in Santa Maria/RS – Brazil, and has studied the positive effects technology can have on the human mind. “I believe that no matter what tool, we always have the power to use it for good purposes,” told us Biazos. “While one could use the internet to escape their own reality by, for example, creating fake profiles – one could also use it to learn, improve, and have fun with the apps they love.”
“As for myself,” Paula shared, “During the pandemic, I used my favorite app to create, to get in touch with new ideas and learn so many new decor tips. It was during these breaks in my home office, playing Redecor, that I finally decided to create and design my very own clinical space – thanks to all of the lovely designs I saw on the app.”
Paula had a few tips for you Redecorators out there on how to make the designing experience even better for your mental health!
Photo by Ananda Zanini
Tip 1 – Make time for yourself
“Make sure you have the time to complete the challenge,” Paula says, “with as few interruptions as possible. Take a few moments a day to do something that you enjoy, like designing a room, and be sure to let everyone know that this is your time. It doesn’t have to be very long, but just the idea of saying ‘I am taking a few minutes to focus on me and what fills my heart’ will do wonders for you in the long run.”
Picture above is of Paulas psychologist office in Santa Maria/RS – Brazil
Tip 2 – Think of others
Another suggestion Paula makes is thinking of the client you’re designing for. “Read the brief and try to imagine the client as someone you know – make this moment real. Let your creativity soar. Once you’re done designing and before submitting, you can ask yourself, how would he/she/they feel with this work? Would they be satisfied? Happy? It’s such a good feeling to know that you’re doing good by someone else, and these are the type of positive thoughts you should encourage when you’re looking back at your own designs and giving yourself feedback.”
“You can always ask yourself,” adds Paula, “If you were this client, would you change something? Of course, we all have different tastes and sometimes the client’s picks are not your favorite, but try to use your imagination and put yourself in their shoes. A little imagination goes a long way!”
Tip 3 – Reflective thinking
“Once you’re done and you’ve submitted your design, take a moment to think over the experience you just had. Were there any moments when designing that your imagination helped you out or that you felt especially creative in? Give yourself as much positive feedback as you can to strengthen your own self-esteem. We often tell our loved ones how great they’re doing – but we don’t say it to ourselves nearly half as often. This is a great chance to tell yourself, “I love what I created, I made some great choices, I feel good about this.”
Tip 4 – Jot it down
“If you have a moment,” says Paula,” Try to write down something you’ve learned from this challenge. This can be either an intellectual experience (like observing how well royal blue and gold go together) or a feeling that you experienced while designing (like how proud you felt when, regardless of the score you may end up getting, you know you love what you came up with).”
“I know it seems like a bit of work rather than having a relaxing moment,” Paula adds, “but who says we can’t learn from a simple moment in our lives, like when we’re designing on an app? If you keep up writing, you can gradually ask yourself questions and connect with deeper parts of yourselves – your skills, your wishes, your plans – all of you!”
“The more you know yourself, the more relaxed you will be. Knowing more about what you want and what you like will help you use every challenge as a moment to stop and connect to yourself – and learn.”
We asked Paula if there was anything else she’d like to tell you talented Redecorators and she said with a wide smile, “Hope to see you soon! Together we can pass through the difficult times the world is facing.” She also asked us to pass along a big XOXO from her to you!
We loved having Paula on our blog to share a bit about her experiences and thoughts as a psychologist! If we’re taking anything away from her interview it’s that we can choose to keep on smiling and taking every challenge (design or not) as a way to connect to our truest selves.
Do you want to design Paula’s study? Check it out in the game right now!