Home Therapy

Interior Design for Increasing Happiness, Boosting Confidence, and Creating Calm: An Interior Design Book

About the Book

Self-help meets interior design in this holistic, gorgeously photographed guide that “thoughtfully and beautifully unpacks the tools and ideas to support mental wellness at home through design and styling” (Justina Blakeney, founder of Jungalow).

“An original approach to domestic bliss.”—Publishers Weekly

Licensed therapist turned interior designer Anita Yokota knows that our surroundings are more than just a reflection of our personal style; how our homes are decorated and arranged can have a monumental impact on our quality of life. During her seventeen years as a practicing marriage and family therapist, she noticed that the state of her clients’ homes often mirrored their emotional issues, which inspired her to develop the Home Therapy method: her signature system for creating wellness from the inside out by setting up your spaces to nurture your mind, body, and spirit.
Instead of basing decorating decisions on trends and fads, Home Therapy’s unique, therapy-informed approach focuses equally on mental health and design and presents the psychology behind making your home intentional. From choosing the right lighting, furniture, and paint color to building boundaries and forming long-term organizational goals, Anita guides you through creating spaces that bring happiness and balance to the sanctuary we call home. 
Anita lays out the four “domains” that need to be addressed to improve your living experience: The Individual Domain focuses on introspection to discover what you need in each space; The Organizational Domain helps you declutter and build functional rooms so you can be your most efficient self; The Communal Domain inspires you to form more authentic connections with others through good design layout; and The Renewal Domain centers self-care and rejuvenation to create the right energy for resting and recharging. 
Feeling calm and confident when you step out the door starts in your home. The perfect gift for anyone looking to create an intentional, thoughtful space, Home Therapy is an invaluable, beautifully photographed resource to decorating from a deeper perspective so you can have a home that supports your authentic self.
Read more

Praise for Home Therapy

Home Therapy helps you feel better in your home . . . Even if you’re just starting to better understand yourself and your home, the Home Therapy method has something for you.”Better Homes and Gardens

Grab a copy of Home Therapy to design your way to a happier home.”—Real Simple

“Setting your home up to optimize your well-being has the power to make a big difference. And licensed-therapist-turned-designer Anita Yokota is working to help people achieve that in her new book, Home Therapy.”Sunset magazine

“Anita Yokota’s Home Therapy is the first time that I’ve come across a design book that so thoughtfully and beautifully unpacks the tools and ideas to support mental wellness at home through design and styling. From defining boundaries to increasing intimacy, Yokota’s tips will help you create a home that supports your well-being—and that’s what I believe that good design is all about.”—Justina Blakeney, designer, author, and founder of Jungalow

“Anita’s method for designing a home is fresh, accessible, and aspirational! This book is filled with expert home advice, organization secrets, and, best of all, tons of images of beautifully designed homes that will inspire you to get the look you want while prioritizing your own needs. To do Home Therapy is to find happiness at home.”—Mikel Welch, interior designer and design expert on The Drew Barrymore Show

“We could all definitely use a little Home Therapy these days for some peace of mind and tranquility. Anita gives us a new way of thinking about designing our homes: set up your home while also setting yourself up for success. Anita’s point of view is a fantastic experience!”—Brian Patrick Flynn, designer/host of Mind for Design on the Magnolia network and interior designer for HGTV Dream Home and Urban Oasis

“If you’re like me, you’re always in search of ways to make your interiors not only look great, but feel great, too. So what better way to think about design than through the lens of therapy? Anita Yokota’s Home Therapy method helps you figure out what makes you tick and, in turn, informs how you set up your space so you can live more beautifully and feel better at home.”—Emily Henderson, author of The New Design Rules

“Anita Yokota is both a licensed counselor and an interior designer, and she marries the two paths ingeniously in Home Therapy . . . I dare you to read this book and not come away with an actionable tip that serves your mental health as well as your house.”BookPage
Read more

Home Therapy

Welcome to Home Therapy

Hello. Come in, sit down, and get comfy. Congratulations on taking the first step toward creating a beautiful home that prioritizes your mental wellness. Maybe this isn’t the first time you’ve opened a book about therapy, or perhaps you have no idea what therapy really is, and that’s okay.

Therapy is for everyone. We all have challenges we face and could use someone to bounce ideas off of in order to navigate our way to the other side. And therapists are simply professionals who are there to help, by listening and offering solutions. Whether you are dealing with issues on your own or with a loved one, as a therapist-turned-interior-designer I have found the problems we face typically begin in the home—and they can be resolved in the home, too. 

Your Home, Your Safe Space

You can’t control what happens in the outside world, but at home you can find ways to feel renewed and fulfilled. While everyone’s problems are wildly different, there are some fundamental similarities I often see. One of the most common issues stems from a failure to set boundaries. You might have trouble carving out time for your own creative enrichment in a busy household filled with children, or perhaps you have trouble going to bed on time and getting enough sleep. With proper boundaries in place, you can make more room for your personal enrichment and self-care.

Something else I frequently help others learn to do is to “live in the gray.” Most people don’t realize that they don’t have to default to a black-and-white, either/or way of thinking. I remind them that sometimes you’re happy and sometimes you’re sad, and that’s perfectly okay. (In fact, you can be happy and sad at the same time—it’s an emotion called bittersweet.) Whether things work out or not, you have to remember that life circumstances can and often do change. The good news is that your home is the perfect place to experience and contain all of your emotions. And when you set up your home appropriately, you can process what you’re feeling in the comforting cocoon of, say, a cozy chair surrounded by plants and calming colors, while you learn to live more comfortably with uncertainty. You don’t have to let those feelings derail you because you know you’re safe where you are. That is the promise of the Home Therapy method.

This leads me to a fundamental truth that is a big part of therapy: We are all born fragile and defenseless. But how we learn to deal with that vulnerability becomes the driving force of our lives. Most of us acknowledge that we come into the world vulnerable and leave it the same way; as a society, however, we somehow pretend that this shouldn’t be true throughout the years we spend living our lives. Therapy acknowledges otherwise. Being vulnerable is important to establishing true connections with others, finding our authentic selves, and feeling secure at home (insert home security pun!)—and, therefore, finding true happiness. But it’s not easy to do, which is why having an environment in which to practice it fully is so important.

Home is the best place to form the ideas we carry with us into the world, so if we can learn to live in the world as we do at home, we can more confidently face our fears and show love to others. That’s why I’m passionate not only about making your home a place where you are surrounded by elevated design, but also a place that elevates you as a human being.

As someone who has seen many kinds of family tragedy, navigated just about every design dilemma, and struggled with my own emotional growth, I want to share my experience on both a personal and professional level, and that’s what we’ll do in this book. We’ll find out what weighs heavy on your mind and in your heart, and we’ll lighten the load, because that’s Home Therapy.

About the Author

Anita Yokota
Anita Yokota is a licensed marriage and family therapist turned interior designer who emphasizes the importance of incorporating wellness throughout the home. Domino named Anita’s site the Best New Design Blog and her work has been featured in MyDomaine, Apartment Therapy, Real Simple, and many others. Anita lives in Southern California with her husband and their three daughters. More by Anita Yokota
Decorative Carat