Color Therapy

“What is your favorite color?” Do you remember when were you asked this question for the first time? How often has your favorite color changed thus far? Why do you find some colors appealing, while others repulsive?

Color, in simple terms, can be defined as a form of refracted visible light energy. It is the most blissful element of everyone’s life. A person is introduced to the kaleidoscope of colors surrounding us from childhood itself, and often associates Red with rose, Blue with sky, Green with Grass, and Yellow with Sun.

A few months back, when I met a friend of mine after a long time, I was taken aback. Not because we were meeting after a long time, but because that she was wearing a bright yellow colored t-shirt, teamed up with a yellow bracelet and matching footwear. I couldn’t control myself from commenting on the fact that I had thought she found yellow disgusting! Her reply was even more astonishing. “Yellow is the color that can uplift your spirits. It makes you feel positive and cheerful. It is a symbol of warmth, affirmation and optimism”, she said. Positive? Cheerful? Uplift spirits? For the next few minutes I kept wondering that how a color could make one feel positive or uplift one’s spirit!

Colors are often linked with having a soothing and pleasing effect on the eyes. However, research has shown that colors also have the power to influence human behavior. They can be classified under two categories; cool colors and warm colors. Cool colors, such as blue, green, white and silver, tend to have a calming effect on the viewer. On the other hand, warm colors, such as red, yellow, pink and orange, have a stimulating effect. Energy, health, excitement, or even anger is attributed to warm colors. Thus your thinking and behaviour is substantially affected by the color of your surroundings, causing you to react in a positive or negative way. Exposure to a specific color acts on the autonomic nervous system, which in turn can raise, or lower blood pressure, and alter functions of various glands of the body. In an experiment performed by the famous color researcher Robert Gerard, separate wings of blue, red, green or yellow color were allotted to a few prisoners. It was observed that prisoners in blue and green wings were less violent than those in red and yellow. Hence color selection for any place carefully needs to be done carefully, depending on its nature. Stressful environments, such as offices, classrooms, hospitals and patient’s room, are always painted in cool colors, to reduce stress and provide a relaxing environment. Warm colors are ideal for public places, such as restaurants, cafeterias, lounges and clubs, since they encourage interaction and stimulate appetite.

Color therapy, or chromotherapy, is a remedy which employs the use of colors that facilitate healing. Depression, caused due to lack of physical, mental and the emotional energies in the body, has been successfully triumphed over using this therapy. Thousands of years ago, Egyptians built healing temples of light, where they treated their patients by exposing them to a particular color of light. It was observed that each color had a different effect on the patient’s body. Today, color therapists make use of Aura reading, which is finding the colors present in the energy field surrounding a person (aura). The aura has different layers, and each layer has a different color. Your health, well-being and spirit have an effect on the colors of the aura. Looking at these colors, the therapists are able to diagnose if you lack any of these energies. They make use of tools such as gemstones, candles, lamps, crystal wands, glass prisms, fabrics, lasers and colored bath treatments to balance these energies. As the colored rays of light are absorbed by the person’s skin, the nervous system changes the chemical balance of his body. The patient is advised to dress up and decorate his surroundings according to the color of his aura, which is thought to encourage the healing process.

Some of the important colors are RED (energy, passion, power, courage, anger), ORANGE (creativity, confidence, independence, pleasure, stimulation of appetite ), YELLOW (cheerfulness, optimism, innovation, warmth), GREEN (harmony, balance, growth, peace, love), BLUE (knowledge, relaxation, health, serenity, inducement of respect), PURPLE (mystery, imagination, originality, royalty, spirituality), WHITE (purity, innocence, simplicity, admiration), and BLACK (wealth and sophistication, power, strength, elegance).

As we all know, what colour clothes you are wearing reveal your day-to-day mood. So the next time, before going to your boss’s cabin with a leave application, do take notice of what color shirt he is in. It will help you to comprehend if that is the appropriate time for giving your application, or not!

Kanika Bedi

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