The psychology of space investigates the influences of architecture on the mind. Two branches that seem separate come together to improve the quality of human life.
The psychology of space is a relatively new concept. It is about understanding how the environments that people inhabit influence their thoughts and behaviors. In other words, it is accepting the relationship that exists between the places we inhabit and ourselves.
This aspect is important because it promotes a way to improve people’s experiences in relation to their direct environment. For example, applying environmental psychology we can prevent anxiety and stress through the development of harmonious spaces.
What is the psychology of space?
As we have mentioned, it is a directly proportional relationship between the physical characteristics of the environment and the behavior of the human beings that inhabit it. Studies already exist in this regard.
Some psychologists and architects have worked together to show that natural spaces and those that have been built have various effects on the human psyche. For example, landscapes in nature are capable of producing a feeling of peace.
In this vein, architects increasingly take human needs into account when designing. From psychology it is promoted that, the more orderly and practical the environment, the better the experience of the people.
In short, architecture and psychology come together to develop environments that are livable for people. An example of this are the constructions that incorporate aspects of nature in urban areas; They respond to a need to connect with the environment.
How does the psychology of space impact our health?
Physical and mental health are related. It is for this reason that, when we are stressed or anxious, the immune system responds worse. The psychology of space has a positive impact on mental health and, consequently, on physical well-being.
Ultimately, most mental illnesses have a significant environmental component. It is logical to think that when the hostile impact of the environment is reduced, the quality of life of those who inhabit it improves.
Environmental psychology or space psychology seeks to impact the neural pleasure centers located in the brain. This means that, in the same way that we can get to enjoy a delicious meal, we can also delight in the satisfaction of a harmonious environment.
Within this order of ideas, one of the main resources that architects use to generate good sensations in the human psyche are the golden proportions; the symmetry in things. The higher the level of symmetry an object has, the greater the attraction to it.
How does space psychology influence behavior?
The emotions caused by the environment we inhabit trigger certain behavioral reactions. That is, when a place is stressful for us, we tend to react in a hostile way; frowns are frowned, our patience diminishes, and we become less tolerant.
It is not surprising that more and more work environments are better adapted to the psychological needs of workers. Indeed, when people spend a long time in a place with unfavorable characteristics in terms of habitability, they become hostile. To avoid this, interior design is taken into account.
On the other hand, the behavioral experience becomes pleasant when the spaces meet certain habitability criteria, ranging from the shape of the place to the design and arrangement of objects. An orderly, clean, and livable environment promotes good behavior.
Some environments that encourage hostile behavior are those that are cluttered, with the space overloaded with objects. Meanwhile, minimalists tend to have a relaxing effect.
The space in which we develop can be understood as an extension of thought. Within this framework, it is understood that an orderly and clean environment is the product of a style of thought with the same characteristics. Interior designs are a way of expression.
How to ensure a healthy environment?
The environment is not just about those around us. The place where we shape life must also be taken into account.
Now, to ensure a pleasant environment we must take into account some basic criteria, such as order, symmetry and cleanliness. When it comes to order, it is about keeping objects in places that are not inconvenient.
Symmetry has to do with the typical shape of objects; the more typical an environment, the better received it will be by people. Finally, cleaning the space is an indispensable key.