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THE INFLUENCE OF COLOURS

I have always been influenced by colours. When I look back to my childhood, I realize how bright colours were always attractive to me. But I really first became aware of how true this is in one of my very first classes at university. The class was to help first year students learn how to study. We were taught different of studying, and we were to find the way that worked best for us.  We were told that if we were “colour” people, our study notes would be more effective if each topic or section was written in different coloured ink. In order to decide if we were or were not colour people, the instructor asked us to think how we feel about colours. Do we buy things like notebooks and pens in certain colours because they “make us feel good” or do we just buy these items in whatever colour we happen to grab first? Do certain colours make us feel happy or do colours have no effect on us at all? I knew after answering those two questions that I am a colour person. I definitely bought notebooks, pens, pencils, pencil-cases, and rulers in colors I enjoyed looking at.  And I knew that I felt happy when I saw colours I like.

So, I did indeed use the “coloured ink” system for my notes and it worked very well for me. By dividing my notes by category and giving each category a specific colour, my brain more easily remembered what I needed to know.  I found that studying for exams was easier when things were divided by colour.  I also noticed that, without realizing it, I used colours I liked on the subjects or sections I enjoyed and that on those I didn’t enjoy so much, I used colours I liked less.

I still find I am influenced by colour today.  Even at work, the items I use everyday are usually in colours I like. For example, I will go out of my way to buy a notebook for work with a pink or brightly coloured cover rather than a blue or black one. 

Now, I have learned that actual scientific research backs up the “colour person” theory. A survey of 600 people was done in which their pill-taking habits were examined. Over 75% of those studied were more likely to take pills if they liked the colour! They also found people were less likely to forget to take their pills if the colour pleased them. When I think back to my own pill-taking experiences, I realize that I too am more likely to remember to take a pill or a vitamin if I like the colour. 

So, surround yourself with colours that make you happy. You might be surprised at the results. Go ahead and enjoy the colours in your life.

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