Perhaps even more fundamental than office plants to the office vibe are the colours used in its design.

Numerous studies now document how colours can moderate our moods, stimulate emotion, influence performance and even cause anxiety. Colours can play a part in shifting our mood from fear to confidence, and from resting calmness towards active engagement.

While colour psychologists point out that our perceptions about colours are subjective, and influenced by cultural and situational factors, there are certainly some broad conclusions we can draw.

Colour of Your Office Impacts Happiness

Why Does Colour Affect Our Emotions?

Studies suggest that people equate positive emotions with the colours of things they like. This is one reason blue repeatedly scores highly, because it’s the colour of the ocean or a summer sky.

Red, on the other hand, is the colour of blood which may be why it’s equated with danger or anger, as well as love.

Other research makes a compelling case for the fact that our emotional responses to colour have a physical origin. Red, for example, is the longest wavelength and hence requires more adjustment of the eye for us to see it. As such our response to it is strong and powerful, in contrast to green which requires no adjustment and is therefore restful.

NB: never under any circumstances consider using Pantone 448C which carries the dubious accolade of the world’s ugliest colour. The Australian government selected it for tobacco packaging after researchers discovered it was received with universal negativity.

Pantone 448C