Experts have studied the psychology behind colors and written numerous articles attempting to discover the right color for ultimate productivity. So the next time you're picking out supplies or a new piece of art for your office, keep these colors in mind:
Orange: Since orange has combining effects of red and yellow, it can brighten your mood. If you are being tested on something, it helps to wear orange because it fires up your mental abilities. Possible downside: it increases appetite.
Yellow: This color is all over the place! Yellow is the brightest, most attention-grabbing color, so you can obtain energy from yellow walls. It can increase concentration. However, it can also make you tired and irritable, and cause you to lose your temper more quickly.
Pink: You may have heard of sports teams painting the opposing team’s locker rooms pink. Well, that’s because it has a calming and passive effect. In fact, many prisons in US are painted pink to keep prisoners calm. Pink mostly evokes a response from females, and can reduce anger and anxiety.
Green: Opposite to pink is green, which if a dark green color, can evoke more of a response from males. It makes us feel comfortable because of its relationship to nature. It is a relaxing color, which alleviates stress and could improve vision (hence “green” classroom chalkboards!). And here’s the selling point: studies have shown people working in green offices are more satisfied with their jobs.
Blue: Splash your walls with blue if you want to get the creative juices flowing—it enhances creativity. Like green, blue produces some calming chemicals in the brain. But everything in moderation, as too much of the hue can make you depressed. Blue signifies loyalty, so maybe make your next boss’ card or gift blue if you want to get on their good side.
This is also why many social media sites--including Facebook--are blue.
Hint: If you’re trying The Biggest Loser at the office, paint your kitchen blue—studies show people who ate in a blue room ate three times less calories than in rooms painted yellow and red.
Red: Red is a testy color. It is known to increase blood pressure and breathing, and consequently your energy and productivity. It helps focus and memory, but can also cause stress, frustration and anger. Like orange, red also increases appetite (cough, McDonald’s, cough!), so watch out for red kitchens!
Purple: If you want to appear wealthy and sophisticated, decorate your cubicle in purple. It enhances spirituality. Writers and idea people pay attention—it can also stimulate deep thoughts.
Black: A symbol of power and authority, black is a stylish color. Bonus: it makes you appear thin! It is also associated with knowledge and intelligence. But beware: black is also the most aggressive color. Hockey teams wearing black jerseys were penalized more for fouls, according to one study.
White: White is neutral, innocent and clean. If we’re talking about the style factor, white clothing is associated with sophistication.
Hint: Lighter desk colors, like white, reduce eye strain because there is less contrast between the desk and paper.
So which colors should adorn your office walls? Well, it really depends on your personality and what you want from your space! My Pretty Office is a good first stop—it has bright colors and cute designs for every mood.
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