Having spent the better part of the last year in lockdowns, we're all aware of the impact our living spaces can have on our mental health. While having little-to-no shakeup from our four walls can start to wear us down, there are things we can do within our confines to improve our mood.
Everything from tidiness to the placement of furniture and the colour of our surroundings can significantly impact our mental state. It's not a new concept by any means, but good to keep in mind if you're looking to redecorate or invest in a Facebook Marketplace purchase (or ten).
What role does colour psychology play?
According to Eugenie Pepper, a psychotherapist and clinical hypnotherapist from Key Mindfulness Studio Randwick, colour has the power to affect our "emotions, [and] even our heart rate, blood pressure and respiration."
This is because as humans, our brains have evolved to pay particular attention to colour to help us to survive, find food, be aware of potential danger and understand the weather.
"As children, we start associating colour with our mood. For example, we learn that a blue sky is associated with playing outside and a grey sky would mean being stuck inside. Our preferences can also come in unconscious ways. For example, we may have had a favourite item of clothing as a child that was blue and therefore we will always love that shade of blue," said Pepper, expanding on how our relationship with colour develops over time.
Now, we're obviously not saying that the colour of your walls and doona will make or break your mental health. However, we're all for doing the most we can to boost our mood. Surrounding yourself with colours that brighten your mood can involve painting your walls, or for a less permanent/time-consuming solution, adding furniture, bedding, paintings and other decorative items.
Pepper explains that it's most important to use colours that promote peace and comfort in rooms that you are going to wind down and relax in (which for most of us is probably our bedrooms). She recommends muted, softer colours and tones, which can often do the trick as a mood booster.
Sheet Society's latest spring collection is inspired by the colours of classic Southern Californian resorts — think muted, dreamy pastels of cream, baby blues and blushy oranges. Every colour was handpicked to exude a comforting feeling of nostalgia and peace — which is exactly the kind of mood we're aiming for when it comes to getting a good night sleep, especially coming into the hotter months.
They're totally idyllic colours to me — I know for a fact that there's nothing I'd rather be doing right now than sipping on a cocktail as the balmy Palm Springs brushes over my sun-kissed skin. Since I spent a lot of my adolescence watching old Beverly Hills: 90210 episodes and fawning over the golden era of celebrities attending Coachella, there could be a reason that I'm intrinsically drawn to these colours.
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Do colours impact people differently?
"Colours are very personal and can be affected by personal experience and culture," said Pepper.
There's plenty of information out there exploring the sentiment around colours impacting people differently — if you dive deep into the #colourpyschology hashtag on TikTok, you'll find plenty of creators diving into the topic (like this great video).
"If you are unsure you can spend some time visualising being surrounded by colour and notice what it makes you feel. Being mindful of colour and focusing awareness on how it makes you feel can help you decide what colours are right for you," Pepper added.
This means you can decorate your room based on what your innermost self wants, and deck your room with it from head to toe. And since we're in an era of immense and radical post-pandemic self-expression, there's never been a better time to reinvent your surroundings, and get a nice little mood booster to boot.