Did you ever walk into a room or restaurant and suddenly feel a sense of happiness and excitement? Do you know why people call Disneyland “the happiest place on earth?” Well, that sense of unexpected happiness you might feel from time to time might have something to do with colors.
Think about the colors that are surrounding you when you feel the happiest. You might come to realize that your psyche responds in a positive way to certain colors. The truth is everyone is wired that way. We all have the capacity to have our moods influenced by certain colors.
In the sections below, the discussion is going to focus on the way colors influence our moods. Then, we’ll take a closer look at the seven colors that are believed to play a role in creating human happiness.
How Colors Affect Your Mood
As a human, you are wired to respond to certain stimuli. When you see things, the first thing your brain senses is the colors of whatever it is you are seeing. It’s a fact that certain colors tell your brain exactly what you are looking at long before you know what it is by form and substance.
Example: If you look at a flower without a sense of color, you might not know what kind of flower you are seeing. If the flower is red, you might immediately recognize it as a rose. If it is yellow, a tulip might come to mind. The color serves as a characteristic that helps you identify the kind of flower.
The fact is we all respond to the stimuli of color. When doing so, we are likely to react emotionally to the colors we see. Here’s a list of ways happy colors can affect your mood and emotions:
- Prompt you to remember pleasant things
- Increase your sex drive
- Prompt you to interact with others in a positive manner
- Prompt you to smile and laugh
- Energize your creative juices
- Increase your energy levels
- Improve your health
- Increase your appetite
How Colors Affect Certain Groups
Different ethnic groups show preference for different colors. Colors that appeal to women might not appeal to men and vice versa. Liberal people prefer brighter and happier colors while conservative people tend to like colors that are lighter in hue. The list of differences goes on and on.
With that said, there does tend to be consensus in the colors that inspire happiness. Moving forward, the discussion will focus on seven specific colors that are known to elicit feelings of joy and happiness.
Using Colors to Elicit Happiness
Before we discuss specific colors that elicit happiness, you might be wondering why knowing this information matters. The best way to explain it is through an interior design example.
If you want to come home to a place that feels safe and happy, you can create that kind of environment with the color schemes you choose. However, if you want a happy environment but don’t know what colors to use, you can easily make a mistake by using all cool colors that may be calm and soothing, but can also leave you feeling somber instead of happy.
That’s just one example of why it’s important to know what colors make you feel happy.
Colors That Make You Happy
Here are seven colors that should inspire you to feel the emotion of happiness:
No one should be surprised that the list of happy colors starts with yellow. If you think about it, lots of happy things are yellow. That list would include lemons, the sun, baby chicks, lemon drop candies, bananas, corn on the cob, and sunflowers. If you wanted to really “brighten” your room, you would choose a yellow scheme.
A lot of people associate the color pink with romance. There’s nothing like a good romantic relationship to make you feel happy and satisfied with your love life. Here are a few happy things we associate with pink: pink rose, the American pink flamingo, baby girl clothes, pink carnation, cotton candy, the Easter Bunny, a little baby’s cheeks, pink elephants, and pink rubies.
While red is known as the color of alertness and warning, it’s also a color that makes people happy. It creates energy, which creates a desire for people to do things that make them happy. Here is a list of red items that might make you feel a sense of happiness: Valentine’s day card, the heart, a red rose, Santa Clause, cherry pie, apples, hibiscus, strawberries, the Red-Breasted Robin, and an Indian sunset.
Orange is a bright color that represents positive energy. When people feel energetic, it opens them up to feelings of happiness. Here are a few happy things that are colored orange: the Disney character Pluto, an orange, autumn leaves, goldfish, an autumn sunset, orange sherbet, Halloween, basketballs, and peaches.
5. Light Blue
While people usually associate light blue with the emotion of serenity, serenity is a cousin to happiness. Happy things that are light blue include baby boy items, the sky, crystal blue ocean water, faded blue jeans, Smurfs, robin eggs, and the light blue care bear.
6. Silver and Gold
Silver and gold represent something that makes everyone happy – financial security. Married people get great pleasure and honor from celebrating their silver and golden anniversaries. Other silver and gold items that elicit happiness include wedding bands and engagement rings, tinsel on Christmas trees, and gold/silver coins.
While white is technically considered a neutral instead of a color, people are more than happy to label it as a color that represents purity, peacefulness, and a new beginning. Clearly, these are happy things. White items that inspire happiness include wedding dresses, marshmallows, snow, cotton, pillowy clouds, and white teeth.
Happy Colors Create Happy Moods
The first thing that happens when you walk into an amusement park is you are bombarded with bright colors. These colors serve a purpose. Amusement parks use bright colors to create a colorful and fun environment.
Nursery schools are always decorated with happy colors. Clowns wear bright and happy colors to elicit laughter. The rainbow is filled with the aforementioned happy colors, serving as a sign of hope.
We could go on and on with this list. However, you should now have a pretty good idea why you might start feeling a sense of happiness when you encounter certain colors.
Here’s a challenge for you. The next time you are feeling sad and “blue”, surround yourself with some of the happy colors mentioned above and see how long it takes before your mood changes and a smile crosses your face.