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True Meaning of Biophilic Design and Where it All Begun

Updated: Jul 6, 2020

meaning of biophilic design

Once I started doing my research on how to achieve a healthy home where it doesn’t just look good but it makes you feel good too, I quickly realised that Biophilic design is the answer. As you might already know I love sharing with you all sorts of tips on how to look beyond aesthetics in order to achieve a healthy home. This time I would like to tell you more about some interesting facts about our relationship with nature. So let's dig into it from the very beginnings.

To incorporate Biophilic elements into our homes properly we need to understand where it's all coming from and the true meaning of having nature indoors. Biophilic design is not just purely applying forms of nature into our living or working environment, but building a valuable connection with it where it enables us to benefit from it.

As E.O. Wilson (1984) said, “the innate tendency to focus on life to and life-like process… To affiliate with life as a deep and complicated process in mental development. To an extent still undervalued in philosophy and religion, our existence depends on this propensity, our spirit is woven from it, hope rises on its currents. “Such a poetic way of explaining our relationship with nature on a deeper level.

Where it all begun.

Did you know that human over time developed a special bond with particular animals like horses, bears, wolfs and dogs? Coincidence? Those animals are related to feelings of protection, survival and success. We also learned to connect with edible herbs, fruits and avoid eating what’s toxic for us. Certain landscapes like mountains, valleys, beaches, forested areas became an important part of our development. It brought us closer to a meaningful interaction with nature in all aspects.

From very beginnings, where we searched for a place to hide, protect or survive, we now have an emotional attachment towards the environment we spend some time in. Eventually, we developed ecological and social connections with places we came across. It’s built upon our memories.

True meaning of Biophilic design and which elements make interaction with nature beneficial?

We don't benefit from contact with nature unless we engage and experience in our own ways. However, not all the experiences are a part of Biophilic design. Only those that have proven to increase our health and wellbeing. The question is - how to recognise which interaction is beneficial and how to translate it into our everyday life?

Biophilic office design

Indeed Office | Location Azuba District – Tokyo, Japan | Design: Specht Architects

Work-related research conducted by Judith Heerwagen (2000) showed the measurable results in 22 percent increased productivity, motivation and emotional satisfaction from workers who worked in the environment with a great amount of natural lighting, extensive interior vegetation, exposure to plants, outside views and a restored prairie landscape. It even motivated them to stay longer at work due to a significant increase in the sense of wellbeing.

biophilic office design example

Similarly, with urban spaces, research results indicated that the open space, trees, water feature and other natural elements had benefits towards resident health, improved morale and wellbeing. As a consequence, in those areas, crime levels were significantly lower too. 

To summarise...

Gradual learning over the years how to appreciate contact with nature and its elements led us to an instinctive need for similar experiences at your own home. Especially for those who live in big cities and don’t have very often the luxury of spending time in nature. Don’t feel discouraged, there plenty of ways to mimic the experience through the Biophilic design. And guess what, it doesn’t cost a fortune!

Start of by using 3 Easy Ways to Include Biophilic Design In Your Home. Once you get into it, you'll never look back. Learn more about all the benefits of Biophilic design at your home from the previous post.

If you are interested in Eco-Friendly or Sustainable home decor, take a look at carefully selected beautiful handmade products that can be easily purchased online. Do you need some interior design inspiration for your home? You might find your perfect style within these Mood Boards.

Other articles I've put my heart and soul into:

Thank you for reading.

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