How the flick of a switch can affect your mood

Perfect lighting: How the flick of a switch can affect your mood
Photo courtesy: Hive Home

You find yourself smiling on a bright sunny day, feeling lazy on gloomy days, cozy, or preferring to stay in when it is dark, and the weather is harsh outside. The amount of light we are exposed to is one of the reasons for the incitement of these emotions.

You enter a room with bright, inviting lights and you feel embraced and welcomed. Similarly, if you enter a room with insufficient or fluorescent lights, your mood may flip completely. Keeping it simple, lighting affects our mood considerably and that further has an impact on how we operate through the course of the day.

Your body reacts to your surrounding and the amount of light you are subjected to acts as a foremost stimulus. Over the years, our body has evolved to react to the stimuli of sunlight during the day and to darkness at night. This responsiveness to natural light is called the circadian rhythm or circadian cycle. Lighting is known to affect our circadian rhythm. Bright lights are best for the mornings and dim, neutral lights are pleasant in the evening. The opposite of these can result in a confused circadian rhythm, which has an impact on our sleeping schedules and level of energy to perform a task.

We all are aware of the fact that poor lighting can cause eye damage. But, to your astonishment, a study from the University of North Carolina suggests that insufficient lighting can cause depression too. Now, it makes sense as to why on days filled with sadness, people withhold themselves from opening curtains/blinds and prefer to curl up in a dark room.

Inadequate lighting can also have an impact on the productivity of an employee or student. Dim or mellow lights can cause strain on the eyes, headache, or in some worse scenario, a migraine. The evolution of the interior structure of offices and classrooms over the years explains the fact that setting the right light in different areas of work can subsequently set the right mood to work. For instance, conference rooms and brainstorm areas have bright lights with a hint of sunlight, so, naturally, our body reacts to this stimulus of alertness and maintains the circadian cycle. Another example can be taken of a library. Libraries generally have a bit dim but warm lights, making the space welcoming and person at ease.

The ability to change our mood lighting design is the most vital element to consider while designing a space. The right use of lighting can make your space look bigger, uplift your mood, improve your productivity, and according to some research also impact your appetite. So, next time when designing your office, setting up a romantic dinner, or planning a party – do consult your lighting designers.

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Shivangi Shah
About Shivangi Shah


Shivangi Shah is founder of Hive Home Lighting Design Studio


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