Shades of joy: How colours in your living spaces can boost your wellbeing

Find out how to use colours in living spaces to create a positive environment that boosts your wellbeing

Different shades of wall paints with painting brushes

Colours in living spaces can influence your temperament and mood, and therefore impact your life in a positive or negative way. The correct colours can increase productivity and enhance vibrations. At a sub-conscious level, colours create an instant connection with the soul; they also affect the nervous system and immune system.

When people visit your office or home, the colours of the interiors should uplift their mood and make them feel good. On a general level, there are some ground rules that work best for different living spaces.


Avoid using bright or dark colours in the bedroom. A bedroom painted red, for instance, is likely to create tension, stress, arguments and disagreements. However, one which is painted pastel pink—a colour good for love, romance and relationships—promotes these emotions. You can also use pastel blue or green. Lighter shades of blue create a calm and tranquil effect.

On the other hand, dark blue, turquoise, dark greens and other related shades are also not recommended. Avoid using white as it is bland but if you do, add other colours like light blue or light pink in the form of curtains, bedspreads or cushions to reduce the blandness.

Children’s bedroom

Decorating a children’s bedroom is almost an art. Adults spread their day-to-day activities throughout the house but children spend most of their time and energy in their bedrooms, be it playing games, entertaining friends, reading, or listening to music. Colours used in their bedrooms should not be dark since that will create hyperactivity. Light, cool colours such as blue green, light blue, blue-violet, and even white, have a calming effect. Such colours also make the room appear spacious. Also, light and pastel colours encourage children to sleep soundly. Avoid red and black.

White can be used for older children instead of very young kids who may easily stain the white walls.


Pastel turquoise is a good colour for the bathroom, as it creates an automatic connection with water. Using colours like light brown, and light blue will also reduce any negative energy emitted in the bathroom.


Light yellow and light green are good colour choices for a kitchen as they promote good health and wellbeing. Subtle colours make you feel inclined to cook healthy and enhance appetite. Avoid painting your kitchen red, orange and blue.

Living room

Living room is where you spend extensive time with family and entertain guests. That’s why this room should appear larger than it is, giving a feeling of spaciousness. Opt for light and earthy colours like beige, white, lighter shades of blue, green or pink. Light colours also give you the flexibility to create a balance by using other colours in the decorative aspects of the room. Green inspires good fortune and wealth, and is essential to creating harmony and peace.

Colours that are dark or warm make the living room appear small and when there are many guests, the room will appear overcrowded and claustrophobic.

Staircases and corridors

These create the foundation of your house. They should be well-lit and appropriately coloured. Consider light pink, terracotta or light yellow. Here too, avoid using dark red, dark blue and black, as these colours create too much energy, which can be intimidating.


The colour scheme of an office should be based on the nature of work done in it. Correct colours should be used not only for the interiors but also for other representations of the company such as logos, flyers, newsletters, annual reports, websites, business cards and others.

Generally, blue is a good colour for almost all types of offices. Light colours should be used in those offices that don’t have windows or have windows that do not open.

Use violet, purple or indigo in offices where the work is related to healing, meditation and relaxation such as spas, health centres and yoga institutes. Medical clinics should have a combination of green and blue. Green represents good health and blue is the colour of peace and relaxation.

If your work is related to media, public relations or advertising, red, yellow, orange or blue are the ideal colours for you as they nurture creativity.

Offices of companies dealing in FMCG [Fast Moving Consumer Goods] must use green, yellow and orange.

Offices of fashion designers should be set in bright colours that indicate variety, enthusiasm and creativity. Preferred colours are: orange, yellow, green, magenta and violet. Use a tint of white to create the right balance.


Creating a healthy temperament and mood in a school is essential. Children should feel happy, enthusiastic, motivated,cheerful and stimulated. Interactions should leave them feeling inspired enough to return the next day.

A combination of bright colours and light colours is invigorating. Walls should be preferably white. Desks and chairs canbe of bright colours like red or yellow. But use a colour like green to balance it out, else the classrooms appears small in size. Limit the use of black tothe blackboard.


Most successful food brands spend huge money in brand building, which includes colour selection. Colours like red, yellow, orange and black are commonly seen in such establishments as the visual impact attracts customers. While it is not advisable to have dark colours in personal kitchens, they are highly recommended in restaurants.


Green is the right colour for hospitals, as it represents health and wellbeing. It’s a colour that is easy on the eyes of the patients. Imagine a hospital that has bright colours like red or orange; such dark colours slow down recovery. In fact, it is proven that a calm and relaxing environment actually reduces pain levels and expedites recuperation. And colours contribute significantly to creating such an environment.


Whether it’s a public or a personal library, yellow works well as it is a fresh and vibrant colour. Yellow also stimulates the intellect. You can also use violet here.

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Sangita Anand is a colour therapist and numerologist based in New Zealand. She is also a journalist and management consultant.


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