Colour is a powerful communication tool. It can affect moods and evoke emotions, cause physiological reactions and even signal certain actions. Do you ever wonder why you wear red one day and blue the next? Or why you feel energized in a friend’s house, but exhausted in another’s?
People are indeed influenced by colours and scientific studies have proven this phenomenon. One of the many studies has shown that people eat less off red plates, while another study has found that students perform worse on the test if exposed to red prior to taking it. Another recent study revealed a surprising finding – streetlights that shine with a hint of blue light rather than white or yellow decrease crime rates in those areas. We learn from science that sports teams in black uniforms get more penalties even compared to themselves dressed in a different uniform.
What do we do with all that knowledge about colours? We use it to benefit our lives. Below is a list of colours and tips for how we can improve our lives with the wise application of colour.
• White is associated with purity, innocence, sophistication, coldness, and sterility. It can create a sense of space and make rooms appear larger while at the same time can also exude a bland, stark, and isolated feel. White can symbolize a fresh start and provide room for creativity. White is about radiance and transcendence, merging with Spirit as it resonates with all our chakras and the whole Being. However, white should not be used for office walls as employees surrounded by white report more headaches and nausea.
• Black is sophistication, authority, power, intelligence and strength. In Feng Shui, black represents the element of water and provides a grounding effect for your home environment. In fashion, black is known to have a slimming effect.
• Red is courage, love, comfort, warmth, but also intensity and aggression. You can use red to draw attention and get you excited and energized. Wear something red to the gym and you will feel your heart beating a bit faster as you dive into your practice filled with energy. Red is also known as a colour of passion so it’s a good idea to wear something red to a date if you are a woman, to get his heart racing.
• Blue is associated with intelligence, tranquillity, trust, loyalty, coldness and unfriendliness. A lot of offices use blue as it stimulates clear thought, concentration and creativity. Brands use this colour if they want to convey a message that they are trustworthy and reliable. If you are on a diet, try eating off a blue plate since this colour is the least appetizing and reduces appetite. If you are a man, wear blue on a date to signal stability. Blue is good for restful sleep, it helps to relieve pain and lower blood pressure.
• Yellow is optimism, confidence, extraversion, creativity and friendliness. It is also associated with fear, depression and anxiety. Yellow increases metabolism, improves memorization, and makes the brain release more serotonin making us feel cheerful. If the yellow is intense, it can evoke aggression and frustration. A study found babies crying more in bright yellow rooms and people overeating in yellow dining rooms.
• Green signals harmony, restoration, wealth, peace, health and sometimes jealousy or stagnation. Green is the colour of balance as it represents nature and new life. Use green if you need to calm down and relieve stress or to spark creative thought – a lot of art and design studios are using green for their offices. There is a tip for those who spend a lot of time in front of a computer – choose green for your computer desktop as it increases productivity and produces the least amount of eyestrain.
• Purple is spirituality, luxury, quality and introversion. Being the shortest wavelength, purple encourages meditation. It signals the finest quality and is associated with royalty. It is mysterious and has associations with outer space. Purple stimulates brain activity in problem solving but can give an impression of artificiality if overused. Try incorporating purple into your life if you need to get in touch with your intuition and psychic powers.
• Orange has associations with physical comfort, abundance, security, fun, frivolity and immaturity. Orange is ambition and symbolizes a new attitude to something. A perfect colour for workout attire, orange stimulates and brings enthusiasm as it increases oxygen supply to the brain.
• Pink represents body tranquillity, femininity, nurture, sexuality, love and physical weakness. Pink is physically soothing and one of its shades, ‘drunk-tank pink’, is even used in prisons to calm inmates. Pink is the colour to train self-acceptance, self-forgiveness and non-judgement.
• Grey is a neutral colour that is sometimes associated with lack of confidence, low energy and depression. It symbolizes practical, timeless and solid things but can also carry an image of old age and death. It is not recommended to wear plain grey to work because it causes passive and uninvolved behaviour – so make sure you pair it with a bright colour to prevent any ill effects.
• Brown is about seriousness, reliability, warmth, nature, lack of sophistication and humour. In Feng Shui, dark brown represents wood and light brown – Earth. It has a nurturing quality but can create a sense of lack of ambition if overused.
Colour Therapy – The Healing Power of Colour
Colour therapy, or Chromotherapy and Colorology, was used for healing in the ancient times by the Egyptians and the Chinese and is still used today by holistic specialists. Colour therapy uses different forms of colour to reach balance of energy in the human system. Every colour has its own frequency and vibration which can affect the energy and frequencies of our bodies.
Colour is an essential part of human life and by connecting with colours we enhance our lives physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Here are some of the most widely used types of colour therapies:
• Crystal Healing uses stones of different colours to reach harmony and heal the body, mental system, emotions and the spirit. Specialists of crystal healing place the stones on the patient’s body according to their colours and following a sacred pattern.
• Colour Silks Therapy uses coloured silks as this fabric has a very high frequency vibration. Sometimes the fabric of just one colour is placed on the entire body, in other cases different colours are used for different parts of the body to reach the best outcome.
• Hydro Colour Therapy uses water of different colours as it is a great energy conductor. Therapy can be done both externally and internally – by showering or taking a bath in a coloured water or by drinking it. The water does not actually need to be coloured – for drinking you can charge your water in a coloured glass bottle. Leave the bottle in the sunlight for at least one day to charge it and remember not to use plastic bottles as they contain toxic substances. You can choose to drink some blue-charged water before sleep as it will help you relax. Red-charged water will boost your energy levels while purple water will prepare your mind for meditation. For external therapy, LED lights are often used in bathtubs and showers to charge the water with a desired colour.
Being so accessible and simple, colour has a great power of signalling things, making us feel a certain way, and affecting our performance. Being mindful about the choice of colours for our daily life can bring substantial changes to the quality of being and having the knowledge about colour gives us an opportunity to enhance our lives on all levels whether through therapy or by simply surrounding ourselves with specific colours.