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Contractor’s Corner: Helping Your Client Unplug Outside

March 18, 2023
A stone bench curved around a fire pit; the bench has tidepool and seagrass colored throw pillows on it.
Relaxing outdoor space with fire pit
Hardscape projects in Kansas City and southern Wisconsin with products manufactured by Belgard, an Oldcastle Company.

As a contractor, one of the most important things you can do for your clients is to plan and execute an outdoor space to help them unplug. In today’s fast-paced, technology-driven world, it’s important to unplug and spend time connecting with friends, nature, and loved ones. Outdoor spaces that promote relaxation, creativity, and well-being are more valuable than ever before.

Planning a Relaxing Outdoor Space

To plan an outdoor space that helps your client unplug, it’s essential to understand their goals, geographic location, and outdoor interests. Start by asking your client about their vision for the space and what they hope to achieve when spending time outdoors. This is a great time to discuss their outdoor patio ideas.

For example, if they’re looking to create a peaceful and relaxing environment, consider incorporating an outdoor garden wall or outdoor planters with comfortable seating and soft lighting. If your client enjoys outdoor games, consider adding a bocce ball court, a horseshoe pit, or outdoor chess. It’s also important to consider the climate and geographic location when selecting plants and hardscaping materials. By taking your client’s goals, geographic location, and interests into consideration, you can create their perfect unplugging space.

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Biophilic Design

Vertical garden with a water feature
A water feature with a vertical garden inspires a peaceful atmosphere.

Incorporating biophilic design principles into outdoor hardscape designs can help your clients feel more connected to nature and provide a calming, soothing environment. Biophilic designs like vertical gardens, built-in planters, and garden walls emphasize our innate connection with nature and seek to integrate natural elements into our built environment. By incorporating these natural elements into your client’s outdoor hardscape design, you can create an environment that feels more organic and promotes more sustainable design. These elements can help reduce stress, increase focus and creativity, and improve overall well-being.

The Finishing Touches

Sometimes it’s all in the details. The smaller finishing touches can make a world of difference in your client’s outdoor living space. For clients who enjoy staying outdoors into the late hours, integrating optimal lighting increases functionality, allowing them to use their space any time. Adding a fire pit or fireplace also serves as an extra lighting source – and makes the perfect gathering spot for fireside chats and s’mores.

Water features are another excellent addition to maximize serenity. The sounds of a bubbling fountain or water bowl have a calming effect – and mask noises from neighbors or traffic. Also, think about any privacy elements that will make your client feel more comfortable. Decorative screen panels can be used to create partitions to separate different outdoor rooms or provide added seclusion.

The Benefits of Unplugging

Patio game area
Outdoor games create a fun environment for unwinding.

Unplugging outdoors provides numerous benefits for mental and physical well-being. Spending time outside is proven to reduce stress levels, lower blood pressure, and improve overall mood. Unplugging from technology encourages creativity and concentration, which can enhance productivity and mental clarity. Additionally, outdoor physical activities like gardening, swimming, or playing outdoor games can improve physical health, increase cardiovascular function, and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. Unplugging provides an opportunity to connect with the natural world, recharge, and prioritize self-care. By creating a unique outdoor space tailored to your client’s needs, you can help them enjoy the many benefits of spending time in nature.

Now more than ever, having a space to unwind and decompress is essential. Helping your clients unplug and recharge in the outdoors has so many positive effects on their well-being. Learning about your clients, incorporating biophilic design, and customizing their projects allows you to create an inviting environment that can be the core of relaxation, rejuvenation, and some of life’s most cherished moments. 

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