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Pick a Colour for Our Mental Health

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What is our favourite colour, or is it a colour that makes us invigorated? Maybe it is Colour My World by the group Chicago and Asia’s True Colors using the word colour in their song title. Also, there are many songs with a colour in their name. These include Purple Rain, written and sung by Prince or perhaps The Beatles, Yellow Submarine are prime examples.



Applying colours to songs and lyrics intensifies what is being said. More importantly, when one picks a colour, it often changes their mood and mental well-being.

Does it seem different when one writes or says, The fire engine and the police car raced over the grass to park next to the broken-down car? Now try the same sentence with colour enhancement.

The red fire engine and the yellow and brown police car raced over the green grass to the royal blue broken down car. One is distinctively better than the other. This can improve our well-being and mental health. No explanation is necessary.

Colours also show up in mental health to influence our mood and behaviour by reaction to psychological and physiological changes. Artist Pablo Picasso mentioned: ‘Colours like features, follow the changes of the emotions.’

In addition, ancient cultures like the Egyptians and the Chinese practised colour therapy called colorology or chromotherapy.
Today, colorology is still a significant part of holistic and alternative treatment. 
  • Red is used to stimulate the body and mind and increase circulation.
  • Yellow is thought to stimulate the nerves and purify the body.
  • Orange is used to heal the lungs and increase energy levels.
  • Blue is believed to soothe illnesses and treat pain.
  • Indigo shades our thoughts to alleviate skin problems.

While there is almost no correlation between colour therapies and curing mental health symptomatologycolour has been recognised as evoking spontaneous emotional reactions that affect our overall mood and stress levels.

This, in turn, exerts an influence on our mental well-being. Colour, its inherent nature, has an array of potential effects beyond single colour implementations.

A monotonous colorscape can often lead to someone’s irritability plus negative thoughts and ruminations, while highly saturated, intense colour patterns may increase our anxieties and depression.

During the 21st Century, there has been a concerted effort to study the specific impact of colours on mental health. At this juncture, most of this type of research is still in its infancy. Harnessing the use of colour in various environments can promote good mental health, just like Red by Taylor Swift.

A further note is that she has incorporated blue and other colours in various songs and titles to explain her feelings and emotions. An exciting and lucrative field of study of colour psychology may have long-lasting significance, warranting further scientific exploration.

Mother nature shows her talents with colours by what we see. Each example can make people with mental health issues feel better about their day. Imagine waking up fantasizing about Ray Charles singing America the Beautiful, with lyrics including, ‘For amber waves of grain, For purple mountain majesties.’ After that, we can drift off to a song like Mellow Yellow by Donovan or Bobby Vinton’s song, Blue Velvet.

How about those titles for an anxious person to relax with?

Another way mother nature shows us colour is through a rainbow. Nice, I know my mood elevates when I see a rainbow in the sky. Often they are the calm after a rain or storm; either way, they are so beautiful.

Many melodies have been performed with rainbows in their titles throughout the years. Most have colourful lyrics portraying better days ahead. From Over The Rainbow sung by Judy Garland to Kacey Musgraves and Kesha doing their different versions of only the term Rainbow they all utilise their songs about rainbows and colour to aid humanity with positive affirmations.

As one can see, colours play an essential part in helping people worldwide  from all walks of life on their road to recovery. Individuals have a knack for setting goals for themselves. Even in the movie, The Wizard of Oz, every major character had a goal. As we remember, the scarecrow wanted a brain, the tin man needed a heart, the lion required courage, and of course, Dorothy wanted to return to Kansas.

One by one, they decided to ‘follow the yellow brick road’ with all of its trials and tribulations (obstacles) along the way. Naturally, the four characters went on their long journey, one brick at a time. By the end of the film, all achieved what they had aspired for. Another instance where colour is mentioned successfully.

Ultimately, many of us frequently use colour combined to become more confident, less depressed or anxious and attempt to put our life in a positive direction to be better people. Throughout this article, many colours were introduced. Has anyone noticed there has been no mention of black, white, or even grey?

Howard Diamond is a certified peer specialist in New York.


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