Did you ever throw on a shirt or outfit in a hurry, without a second thought to how your color selection could influence you, that maybe your choices could have an effect on you, as a rough form of color therapy? We all know our palette choice can be a fashion statement, can reflect or even change our current mood, but did you know some people believe in special energies emitted by the light? Specific colors not only recall specific emotions, but also may have a further, more powerful influence to your health according to this ancient remedy called color therapy. Color therapy, also known as Chromotherapy, is a method of shining different colored lights on a patient to treat disorders. Believe it or not, it is included in the National Library of Medicine, defined as the "treatment of disorders with color." Let’s explore how you can utilize color to improve your health and how effective color therapy really is.
1. It’s Not Light or Art Therapy
If you’ve heard of light therapy (using bright light to improve mood) or art therapy (healing through art), it’s easy to confuse this with color therapy. But color therapy does not place an emphasis on the psychological impact of seeing colors, but rather, on the energies the colors themselves physically possess. Light and art therapy are more modern discoveries utilizing visuals to positively influence our minds.
2. New Fad? Nope
Color therapy has history dating back to the ancient Egyptians, Romans, and Greeks, who believed in the energy carried by light. The first person to practice it was Avicenna, a Persian physician and philosopher, born in the year 980 AD! More modern research began with an American named Augustus Pleasonton, who published the book ‘‘The Influence Of The Blue Ray Of The Sunlight And Of The Blue Color Of The Sky" in 1878 about the positive effects of blue on the growth of crops and livestock, as well as on human health. This marked the beginning of modern color therapy.
3. It’s All about Energy Balance
Color therapy is considered alternative medicine, just like crystal therapy and acupuncture. You’ve seen those hippie boutiques or exotic marketplace themed stores selling different crystals that claim to have special effects, right? The idea behind color therapy is quite similar. Color therapy adopts the idea of Chi and Chakras, or concentrated energy points. Imbalanced Chakras result in disease, which can be balanced back by shining a specific "powered" (colored) light. Whoa – are you confused, dazed, stupefied yet? Shining a specific colored light (which has a unique wavelength and vibrational frequency) on your body can induce a specific effect on the health and function of a body part. Someone who lacks a color is given more of that color, while someone who has too much of a certain color may be treated with the opposite color.
4. Each Color Has Unique Powers
Well, how do you know which color to use to regain your balance, you might ask. Each color has a different meaning. Red is for energy, stimulation, passion, while Orange symbolizes freedom, cheerfulness, and warmth. Yellow is mentality and focus – Green is for nature and harmony. Blue represents rest, cooling, and peace.
5. Each Color Corresponds to a Chakra Point
So a color not only has specific and unique powers, but also is directly linked to a part of the body and stimulates that body part and its function. For example, green is linked to the heart Chakra – it not only represents nature and harmony, but also stimulates the heart Chakra and helps regulate the heart.
6. Mysticism? Maybe
Many scientists claim color therapy as pseudoscience. There just simply is not enough scientific proof that it works, even if it has been practiced for thousands of years. Some people believe it’s all in the head – basically that it could work because a patient believes in it (called the placebo effect). Others only recognize the psychological effects of colors on emotions.
7. You Can DIY
The easiest way to try color therapy at home is to use different colored fabrics instead of light – a red swatch of fabric reflects that light on to you as does red light. Using colored plastic filters on a small flashlight is an alternative that may require more materials and preparation.
No scientific method seems to have proven the value of color therapy, but we all know there are things that simply cannot be explained logically and accurately. Even acupuncture, which is a widely accepted and reputable practice in many Asian cultures, is not fully recognized in the United States. Perhaps you should give color therapy a try and find out for yourself. Whether the good results come from the placebo effect, or simply the ability of colors to shift our moods, if it works, it might be worth practicing. Do you have a favorite color that you wear frequently? It may just be comforting and healing you in more ways than you think! Tell me about it... I'd love to hear from you!