Feeling Blue? Colour Psychology Is The Easy Way To Brighten Your Mood

With just a couple of clever colour choices, you can tackle the iso blues.

For many Australians, social distancing has taken an enormous toll on mental health and well-being. It can be difficult to seek positivity and joy in what is sure to be remembered as a historically dark time.

But you can still find brightness in brightness.

Colour theorists assert that when we understand the impact colour has on our minds and bodies, we then have the ability to alter our moods and behaviours.

A big orange jumper will do more than keep you warm -- it will make you feel recharged and motivated -- if you take a note out of a colour psychologist's book.



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According to Karen Haller, “when you love colour, it loves you back. The more you get to know it, the more it will enhance your life and uplift your soul.”

Haller is an Applied Colour and Design Psychology Specialist, and in her book The Little Book of Colour she outlines the distinct impact each colour and shade can have on the brain.

As we continue to brave through self isolation and working from home, we need to take advantage of every pick-me-up that comes our way.

So this is how you can apply colour theory to your quarantine closet and work space:

Why wear yellow?

In her book, Haller explains that the colour yellow can have a profound effect on our psyche.

“Yellow is one of the psychological primaries and is related to the emotions and the nervous system," she wrote.

"It has a relatively long wavelength and is emotionally stimulating, making us feel more confident, positive and optimistic."

It’s the perfect colour for a self-esteem boost. Adversely however, an overwhelming amount of yellow can trigger feelings of anxiety and nervousness.

Why wear green?

Green is the colour of life.

“We are reassured by green on a very primitive level,” the psychologist wrote, stating that our minds associate the colour with the abundant supply of our needs, like food and water.

But too much green can be bad for productivity. As we find it so restful, it can leave us feeling stagnated and bored.

Why wear pink?

Millennial pink may be the trend that won’t quit, but Haller warns that it could be doing more harm than good in the workplace.

“Pink can come off as needy, weak or helpless,” she wrote.

But it can work wonders for the family, friends or housemates you’re surrounded by at the moment: “Pink is the colour for an expression of a nurturing, caring and empathetic love.”

Why wear red?

Iso has rid many of us of our beauty and wellness routines, and in doing so, has left us feeling disheveled and not in control of our appearance and bodies.

If your self-esteem or libido needs a boost, you may want to shimmy into some red.

In her book, Haller cites a University of Rochester study that found “red enhanced women’s attractiveness to men.”

If you’ve not got love on the brain and just want to concentrate on your workload, red isn’t the colour for you.

“Use too much red and it can appear aggressive, confrontational and defiant.”

Why wear blue?

As blue is another psychological primary colour, it, like yellow, has an extensive impact on us mentally.

Blue can make us feel serene and reflective, but you shouldn’t surround yourself in it, especially not before a Zoom call or social interaction," Haller suggested.

“You could find yourself feeling or coming across as aloof, cold or uncaring.”

So... you only have black?

If you’re working from home, you’re probably keeping your outfits very casual. And even the maximalist, colour-fanatics of the world tend to opt for blacks and greys when they’re wearing sweats or activewear.

If you don’t have any colourful, comfortable clothes and you don’t want to fork out the cash to create a ‘quarantine closet’, there is another way you can control the colour in your life.

Colour in your work space

Decorating your home office or workspace is so cheap, it’s probably free. Think about the stationery you’re surrounding yourself with, or change the wallpaper on your laptop.

You can also take a leaf out of Zoë Foster Blake’s book by devoting the afternoon to colour-coding your bookshelf.

Not only does this look fabulous, but the time you spend concentrating on colours and organisation could flood you with serenity and the feeling that you’ve achieved something.



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Cosy up to the idea of colour theory and you’ll soon experience that sense of control and positivity you’ve been lacking since heading into self isolation.

Remember, it’s not just a colour, it’s a chance to take the reins on your happiness.

Featured Image: Getty/Instagram

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