Colors in your workspace can have a huge impact on your mind and emotions.
As Creatives, we know how important colors are and how they need to be presented in order to produce an amazing piece of work that will be most appealing to others. We put all our efforts into focusing on what colors to use in projects that we end up forgetting how important they are in our own workspace.
What does your workspace look like right now? Do you have basic boring walls in shades of beige, grey, or white? Are you looking to declutter and revamp your workspace? Before you do, keep reading to find out what each color can do for your psychological well being.
Psychological research has found that certain colors have an impact on your moods and how you behave.
Realtors have been using color psychology on potential buyers for years! Have you ever walked into a house that has every color chosen perfectly for every room and all the decor was set up to play on all the other surrounding colors just right? You may have walked out of there wanting to buy or rent that place just because of how beautifully decorated it was. That’s because they were playing with your emotions! Different colors bring out different emotions. So let’s take a closer look at what colors in your workspace can do for you.
When you think of the color green, you more than likely think of the beauty we know as mother nature. It’s the most popular and common color found in nature. Most shades of green will bring out a sense of relaxation, calmness, and happiness while others give off a little boost of energy and joy. It helps ease anxiety levels and evoke a sense of tranquility and peace.
In addition to it’s calming and soothing effects, research has found that the color green can also improve one’s reading ability. Take a look at these next two sentences.
Read this sentence that is currently written in a shade of green.
Now read this sentence that is in a written in a shade of grey.
Did you find the sentence that was written in green easier to read versus the one that was in grey? If not, it’s okay. It may not make a huge difference to you, but some, like those with reading disabilities, have found an increase in readability.
There are so many shades of green and with all those shades come different emotions. Earthy tones will give off calming and soothing effects while the brighter more vibrant shades evoke a sense of excitement and happiness. Adding house plants with earthy green tones is a perfect way to liven up your workspace to promote that tranquil environment we all want and need.
The color blue is a favorite by many. It’s widely known as the King of the colors. Like green, blue is associated with nature and also represents peace and tranquility. Its soothing tone promotes physical and mental wellness. Imagine yourself sitting in a beach house with baby blue walls and the view of the beach right outside your door. You can hear the sounds of the crashing waves in the near distance while you breathe in the ocean air. Sounds pretty amazing, doesn’t it? A perfect serene environment that gives an airy and spacious feel to the room.
A sense of calmness aids greatly in concentration which in turn increases productivity. This would be a perfect color choice when you have a project that needs attention to detail. You’ll find that a lot of offices will use this color in a room that is used for projects that require a lot of “thinking outside the box” mentality. It increases productivity while making you feel at ease. Try painting an accent wall blue, add some blue decor like a potted plant with blue flowers or hang up some wall art with blue being the primary color.
Red is used to call attention to something like a red stop sign, fire extinguisher, or red bold letters in an email. Our mind usually associates red with a sense of danger or caution. It’s a very exciting yet aggressive color. It makes us more aware of something which in turn ignites a little spark in our brain to help us be more alert. It’s a vibrant and very energetic color that can help increase our attention to detail.
Try adding some red accents in your workspace to help give you that little energetic boost. But be warned, too much of red can trigger anxiety and stress so use it moderately and wisely. Don’t go off and paint the whole room red if you are prone to get stressed easily!
Did you know that red is also highly used in the art of persuasion and sales?
If you’re trying to sell something, the next time you meet with a potential buyer, if you meet in person, wear something red!
Research shows that it’s associated with a sense of power. Buyers are more prone to buying something just by seeing the color red. It’s a “call to action” color. How convenient for marketing around the Holidays!
This one is my absolute favorite! Purple is said to be the color of imagination and spirituality. Since purple is a combination of blue and red, it provides both calming yet powerful energy. It’s amazing what different shades of purple can evoke in one’s frame of mind. Various shades of violet relate to a fantasy world. It’s a perfect color to help you daydream and escape reality for a little while. Please be sure you aren’t drifting off onto cloud nine when you’re at work though! Unless you’re writing a book and need a little imaginative boost.
Violet colors also help boost creativity levels. This is why it’s my absolute favorite color! It’s an extremely magical and mysterious color that brings on an amazing sense of imagination.
Purple is considered both a cool and warm color tone, depending on how light or dark you go with it. A darker purple is a bit more dramatic whereas a lighter tone gives off a calming effect, such as Lavender. It’s also commonly associated with royalty and leadership. It provides a great sense of confidence and power. I am an avid user of purple tones in my workspace. Not only because it’s my favorite color, but because of the sense of self-respect, dignity, and confidence it brings to light as well as the amazing creativity boost.
I highly recommend incorporating shades of purple in your workspace if you haven’t already! But again, let me warn you that too much of the color purple can also promote depression in some. Especially if you are already prone to depression. If you are sensitive to sad and depressing emotions, use this color carefully in your workspace. Add a splash of it here and there versus going all out and decorating everything with purple.
If you need a pick me up, then you need some yellow in your life! Yellow brings out an optimistic, warm, and cheerful emotion. It’s also said to help raise your self-esteem levels and build confidence. Research has shown that yellow is psychologically the strongest color. The color yellow helps with decision making as well as giving you a sense of clarity to promote more thoughts and ideas. It’s known to increase the ability to focus, especially when studying.
However, be careful with which tone of yellow you choose as it can have a completely negative effect altogether. Some schools use yellow in the classroom or hallways with intentions of promoting happiness, excitement, and clarity, however, sometimes they choose the wrong shade of yellow and consequentially end up with more aggressive and stressed students versus the happy and calm ones they wanted. This is why it’s so important that you look into the different shades of yellow before going overboard with it as well as what other colors help balance it out.
A lot of people will find yellow irritating rather than cheerful. But again, it all depends on the tone you are using. Rather than have a bright yellow room, I would suggest adding some light and airy yellow tones as an accent color on the wall or in your decor.
Here we have another big creativity booster color! Orange creates enthusiasm and gives off very high levels of energy. It combines the strong stimulations of red hues along with the happy tones of yellow. It’s also a very playful and uplifting color. When used correctly, it can increase your focus and get your creative juices flowing.
This color is best used to offset another color, like white, or green. Having too much of orange can be overwhelming and can actually trigger your appetite, surprisingly! It’s actually a fantastic color to have in the kitchen. Unless you’re on a diet that is. The next time you go to a restaurant, look around you and see if you notice shades of orange in the decor or pain jobs. They may just be trying to increase your appetite.
When you feel your mind wandering and find yourself unable to focus on the task at hand, think about adding a splash of orange to your workspace. Not only will it allow you to concentrate better, but it’ll also bring a sense of positivity to your day as well.
Another positive color that should be considered in your workspace, whether you’re a man or woman, is the color pink. It’s said that pink helps calm nerves and emotions by lowering your blood pressure. When you’re feeling negative emotions such as anger or aggression, focus on the color pink.
Studies have shown that aggressive people put into a pink room for a short period of time have actually calmed down a lot faster than those in other rooms. Prisons, hospitals, and police stations have been successfully integrating this method in order to calm down prisoners, drunks, and mentally ill patients. However, having too much exposure for a long period of time will have the complete opposite effect. Some prisons have reported that prisoners are complaining of going mad being in a pink room. This is more than likely because they are being left in their too long.
Fun Fact: The University of Iowa Hawkeyes painted their away team locker room pink with intentions of making their opponents more passive and relaxed which would give their team an edge. Don’t believe me? Check it out here.
Combining pink with darker tones such as blue, black, green or purple gives this tone a much stronger presence. Go ahead and give it a try. If you don’t want to paint anything in your workspace pink, then try going for some pink decor, office supplies or flowers.
Let’s put these colors to action and see how they really look in a workspace.
Take a look at this picture. Here, you’ll see a plain and simple room without any colors other than white and gray tones. It doesn’t really spark much emotion or creativity, does it? While it looks nice, it’s doesn’t have a wow factor.
Now let’s take a look at the same room but with the different colors that we discussed. When you first see each room, think about how they make you feel. What is your first thought and emotion?
What did you feel when you saw the different colors in each room?
Let me know what your initial thoughts were with each color change.
Share your thoughts in the comments below and see what others thought.
Next, let’s take a look at various color combinations to see how each different shades can influence your thoughts and mood.
As you can see, each room carries a completely different mood and atmosphere simply by changing the colors. Keep this in mind when you revamp your workspace to help you boost that creativity in you!
Which color combination appealed to you the most?
Which one made you the calmest and relaxed?
Did you feel anxious or nervous with any of these combinations?
Let me know your answers in the comments below!
Remember, we are all different with unique personalities. What may be calming for one may be the complete opposite for the other. This color guide is simply a reference to what the most common meanings are of each color. Further scientific research is required in order to fully perfect these statements. Let me know if you’ve felt anything different about these colors. I would love to know what your thoughts are!
I would love to see your workspace and how you are using different colors to boost your creativity! Upload a picture of your workspace onto Twitter or Instagram and tag me using @TheTinkerBug or #TheTinkerBug.
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