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Uni Room Ideas: 5 Steps to a Peaceful and Productive Space

September is upon us again, and we all know what that means: it’s time to go back to university. Whether you’ll be braving halls, returning to your student house, or undertaking your studies from the comfort of your family home, the fact is you’re probably going to be spending a lot of time in your room. Like, a lot. And if you’re anything like me, you’re going to want that room to be a tolerable place to be, since it is no longer just a bedroom, but also your lecture theatre, seminar room, society, library, and study area, all rolled into one. 

This being the case, I’m here to share my top tips to transform any room into a peaceful yet productive space in 5 simple steps.

Step 1: Bedding

As students, a comfy bed is absolutely crucial. Opt for a nice, heavy duvet, or even a weighted blanket if you can. The feeling of being secure under a warm blanket has been shown to increase production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter involved in the regulation of sleep, as well as oxytocin, which can relieve pain, reduce stress, and induce feelings of calm, helping you to get the best quality of sleep possible.

For extra comfort, add throws, blankets, and cushions, especially if you can get ones with different textures and patterns to create some contrast.

Step 2: Workspace

The second pillar of a student room is, of course, a place to do your work. Whilst a dedicated study area at the library is usually preferable, the chances are you’ll be doing most of your studying from home, and though a desk in your room will never hold a candle to the experience of wandering around the Student Centre hopelessly looking for a space, it will have to do for now.

You’ve probably heard it said a thousand times but seriously: keep your desk tidy. Invest in a magazine rack for any papers, a storage box for stationary, and if you find your desk becoming messy, put aside some time to declutter.

You’re also going to want to get a comfy chair, so cushions are going to be your best friend here again.

Step 3: Lighting

You need good lighting in your room, it’s a must. If you’re lucky enough to get plenty of natural light in your room, try and make this the focal point of the room. Otherwise, feel free to get creative with any combination of fairy lights (a student staple), scented candles, LEDs, lamps, and more.

Try and choose warm-toned lights, as these will help create a peaceful atmosphere, and if you have LEDs, you can experiment with different colours from green, which is said to enhance learning and concentration, to orange, which can increase oxygen to the brain. 

Step 4: The Walls

This is a bit of a tricky one, as it can be hard to decorate your walls without losing your deposit, but worry not, you’ve got options. 

Option 1: Command strips, deposit-friendly and highly recommended for hanging picture frames, lights, notice boards, mirrors, and other small decorations.

Option 2: Blu-tack, risky, but very useful for keeping photos, posters, and larger items like tapestries stuck to your walls. 

Fill your room with all the things that make you happy, but if your goal is a peaceful and calm bedroom, minimalism is the way to go here. As Marie Kondo once said, ask yourself if an item sparks joy; if it doesn’t, it’s time to let it go.

Step 5: Plants

According to the RHS, keeping houseplants has been shown to boost mood, decrease stress, improve productivity, and even reduce blood pressure. There’s also evidence to suggest they can improve the air quality in a room, which is definitely a welcome bonus for us Londoners

Spider plants are a good option as they’re not only easy to look after, but also able to reduce VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), helping to purify the air. For my fellow serial plant killers, aloe vera and cacti are recommended as they’re very cute yet very low-maintenance, so you can’t go wrong.

To summarise, all you have to do to ensure your bedroom is a peaceful, positive and productive space is to follow these steps! All that’s left is the hard bit…actually doing the work!

Sophia Proudman is here for a good time, not a long time.
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