Couch Counsel with Interior Designer Anita Yokota

Interior designer Anita Yokota, former family therapist, combines her two talents in a new book, Home Therapy: Interior Design for Increasing Happiness, Boosting Confidence and Creating Calm, out Dec. 6. Here, she shares her insight—and tips:

How do you blend your past and present careers with this book?

Being a therapist gives you an emotional toolkit that you never let go of. It makes me a better communicator and a better read of people. Design and therapy are all about trusting your instincts. As a therapist, it was to help someone make sense of our story. As a designer, it’s now to help them tell it.

What inspired you to write this book?

I’ve always dreamt of writing a book. Initially, I thought it would be in the role of a therapist. When I became a designer, I thought it would be a design book. But I’m both voices, so my book is, too. Home Therapy really shares the whole of me and what I hope for in all of our homes: that what we feel on the inside might be lifted or balanced by what we surround ourselves with on the outside.

What is your top tip to create a home that feels good?

Like everything in life, good things come from our own vulnerability. Same goes for our homes. Yes, we can look at a beautiful room and copy it. But good design is personal. As humans, we want to be seen by other people. When our homes reflect who we are, we feel seen and centered in the space we are in.