Paint It Like You Mean It: 3 Best Colours for Your Office

Feeling blue? Seeing red? Green with envy? As you can see, our language is very rich in color idioms, and this is for a reason.

Colour is a potent communication tool that affects us, as human beings, along with our feelings and perceptions. Colour is, moreover, often an indicator that we use to express our emotions, so that others understand us better. Every color has a unique combination of effects that it imposes on us, which fosters various psychological reactions: from positive to negative.

Have you ever thought why you feel differently in the yellow room and in the room that is painted white? Have you ever noticed that working surrounded by certain colors is more natural than with others?

You cannot underestimate the importance of office space. The internal workplace design may both increase or decrease the productivity of the people. So do different colors that surround us in the office space differently influence our productivity and focus. While some shades may increase our abilities to think and generate ideas, others may suppress our creativity and beat the worst out of our mind.

No need for you to read psychology books now – all you need to know about the effect of different colors on our mental and physical performance is right here, in this article.

Color Psychology

 The subject of color psychology is an indispensable part of art, design,  marketing, and sales fields and is broadly used in business to achieve better results with sales and promotion.

We found that blue affects our mind, red touches our body, green affects the inner balance, and yellow plays with our emotions. These are the primary colors; thus, when combines – they influence your work behavior to the fullest.

Ask any expert, and they’ll tell you that color is the new leading edge in workplace design. In our research, we came across the extensive works by Mariana Figueiro, a professor at the Lighting Research Center, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Figueiro attested to an interesting fact that colored lighting affects productivity.

Look around. Look at the colors that surround you. What do you feel?

Some colors might make you sad, tired, while others might make you feel energized and ready to save the world. Having worked in a completely white office, I can not underestimate the importance of having colors in the working space. This not only boosts productivity but also strengthens the emotional stability.

Before you start feeling overwhelmed and lost within the hundreds of shades and tones, we’ve curated this guide to help you in selecting the colors that have the most significant impact on us.

How Does it Work?

Our research-intensive content centers upon Angela Wright’s scientific theory of color. The approach stems from Wright’s observations and extensive studies on how colors affect people’s behaviors in a different environment. Wright’s work reveals that actually, it is a personality that transforms how people interpret color.

Colour moves to our eyes through different wavelengths of photons that emanate from the sun. This wavelengths strike a colored object, and the object can absorb the wavelengths that match the atomic structure of the object. Whatever we’re able to see is what’s reflected back to us.

The wavelengths strike the retina, and convert into electrical impulses. The impulses make their way to the hypothalamus, the small region of the brain sits near the pituitary gland. One of its essential functions include:

  • Regulating emotions

  • Management of daily physiological cycles

  • impacts of color on productivity

Angela’s research indicates that the intensity of color also affects one’s response to it. This is contrary to what most people think – that is not only the pure color that influences our behavior, but tons of shades within it change us differently.

The intensity determines whether a color is soothing or stimulating. Colors with low saturation tend to soothe, while bright colors stimulate. Highly saturated colors include: yellow, green, red, and blue.

Red affects the body (physical appearances), while blue has more power over our intellectual activities. Yellow changes our confidence, emotions, and feelings, while green maintains a perfect balance between all of the named above: emotions, body, and the mind. Combining colors may result in achieving multiple effects, inherent in those colors.

Blue

Blue is proved to be the most productive color. This color is doing an excellent job to stimulate our intellectual activities, or, so to say, make us think more intensively. Offices, where mental occupation is involved, can benefit if they spice up the blue with splashes of orange, to add some emotional content.

On the other hand, it important to note that blue has a calming, even sedentary effect that works superbly in the office environment.

The lighter the shade of blue is, the lesser is its effect of the suppression of activity.

Yellow

If you are engaged in creative work (art, design), yellow is a go-for color. It stimulates both the spirit and the ego. Yellow will wake up those brain fields that are responsible for the most creative ideas.

Picture yourself in an office space that has yellow accent walls. I bet you can already feel the boost of energy flowing to and through you. Yes, that’s exactly how it feels having yellow accent walls.

A massive burst of creativity is also bound to fill your office and inspire its inhabitants with creativity. However, using such color require certain moderation. Bright yellow splashes – yes. Entirely yellow space that will make your and your colleagues blink – no, no, no.

Red

Red is a very dangerous and complicated color. However, it is ideal in cases where physical work is happening. It will play its role much better than yellow or blue would do instead.

A restaurant is an excellent example of such a color scheme. Red is passionate enough to wake up hunger, thirst, energy, aggression and many other powerful feelings and emotions in our spectrum. If used in an office space, it should never be the primary color. Otherwise, you and your co-workers might be over-stimulated by its power.

Identifying the Ideal Shade

As you can see, the subject of color is complicated enough not to narrow down to pure and straightforward coloristic, but also the tonality and saturation.

Comfortable office space, on the other hand, should not be limited to only a good color scheme, no matter how important it is. Productivity in the office must radiate from other external materials, such as ergonomic furniture, such as these chairs, that will keep your physical body in a relaxed yet proper position.

Without that, any work project is doomed to painful experience and back pain. It should also support the corporate culture, and the atmosphere people create themselves through interactions and daily activities they undertake.

Still, choosing an appropriate color framework for your office is one of the core decisions you should strongly consider. The first thing you’ll need to do is to select the primary color, the base. This should be determined by what you want to affect – is it the body, balance, mind, or emotions? Having done that you’re in a better position to select. The next thing is to choose the tone of that color based on whether you want to stimulate or soothe the occupants of the office environment.

There’s also need for you to follow your gut feeling while choosing the ideal color. This stems from the fact that color is both scientific and personal at the end of the day. You’ll know the ideal colors that stimulate you if you listen to your inner self. We’re all different. Every office and every team is different. Think of your spirit. Think of your values as a team. A color that will reflect your dynamics as a whole would be the right color.

Written By
Artem is the founder of My Ergonomic Chair blog - his absolutely beloved project on office ergonomics and posture. Being very dedicated to sports and well-being, he loves to share his knowledge with others and help others to increase their level of comfort, productivity as well as improve health in order to live a better and longer life.

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