Color therapy, also known as chromotherapy, is a form of therapy that uses color and light to treat certain mental and physical health conditions. We can trace this form of therapy back to the ancient Egyptians. They made use of sun-filled rooms with colored glasses for therapeutic purposes.
The practice of color therapy can also be traced to Indian ayurvedic medicine, which claims that the application of certain colors can correct imbalances in our body's chakras.
While color psychology is the study of how different colors can influence human behavior and perception, color therapy is different. It is based upon the idea that certain colors can impact people's "energy" and impact health outcomes.
The Benefits of Chromotherapy
Mental health benefits such as improved mood and calmness
Reduced anxiety and stress
Pain and inflammation relief
What is Color?
As most of you know, color is light and energy. Color is visible because it reflects, bends, and refracts through all kinds of particles, molecules and objects. There are a variety of wavelengths that light can be categorized, producing different types of light. Visible wavelengths fall approximately in the 390 to 750 nanometre range and is known as the visible spectrum. Other wavelengths and frequencies are associated with non-visible light such as x-rays & ultraviolet rays. Most people are aware of the effects of non-visible light, so it makes sense that visible light would also affect us.
One example of the way light can affect us is a mild form of depression known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), which causes many people suffering during winters.
Introduction to Color Therapy
While it is common knowledge that light enters through our eyes, it’s important to note that light can also enter through our skin. Given the unique frequencies and vibrations of various colors, people believe that certain colors entering the body can activate hormones causing chemical reactions within the body, then influencing emotion and enabling the body to heal.
Colors are known to have an effect on people with brain disorders or people with emotional troubles. For example, the color blue can have a calming effect which can then result in lower blood pressure, whereas the color red might have the opposite effect. Green is another color that may be used to relax people who are emotionally unbalanced. Yellow, on the other hand, may be used to help invigorate people who might be suffering from depression.
Alternative therapies also believe that a person’s aura contains different layers of light which can be used for cleansing and balancing. Knowing the colors in your aura can help you better understand your spirit, and thus help you better understand how to heal.
There are also commonly noted psychological effects of color as it relates to two main categories: warm and cool. Warm colors – such as red, yellow and orange – can spark a variety of emotions ranging from comfort and warmth to hostility and anger. Cool colors – such as green, blue and purple – often spark feelings of calmness as well as sadness.
The concepts of color psychology can also be applied in everyday life. For example, maybe you’re planning on re-painting your walls or redecorating a house or room with a new color scheme. Well, you might want to consider some of these suggestions about colors and how they might affect your emotions and mood.
Psychological Effects of Cool Colors
Need to be creative? Want help getting those brain synapses firing? Try utilizing the color purple. Purple utilizes both red and blue to provide a nice balance between stimulation and serenity that is supposed to encourage creativity. Light purple is said to result in a peaceful surrounding, thus relieving tension. These could be great colors for a home or business office.
Are you looking for a peaceful and calming environment? You might consider using green and/or blue. These cool colors are typically considered restful. There is actually a bit of scientific logic applied to this – because the eye focuses the color green directly on the retina, it is said to be less strainful on your eye muscles.
The color blue is suggested for high-traffic rooms or rooms that you or other people will spend significant amounts of time. Another cool color, blue is typically a calming and serene color, said to decrease respiration and lower blood pressure. The bedroom is a great place to use these colors as they should help you relax.
Psychological Effects of Warm Colors
Want to create an environment of stimulation or wet people’s appetite? You might consider utilizing the colors yellow or orange. These colors are often associated with food and can cause your tummy to growl a little. Have you ever wondered why so many restaurants use these colors?
You do want to be careful about using bright colors like orange and especially yellow. They reflect more light and excessively stimulate a person’s eyes which can lead to irritation. You also probably don’t want to paint your dining room or kitchen these colors if you’re a calorie-counter.
Chakras and Their Coordinated Colors:
There are seven traditional colors for seven chakras. Each one reflects the frequency or vibration of light of these energy centers.
Root Chakra / Red
The color red is what represents stability, safety, grounding, and Intensity. Passion, excitement, love.
Sacral Chakra / Orange
The color orange represents emotions, creativity, optimism, pleasure, sensuality, and passion. Warmth, excitement, kindness, Joy & over all Energy.
Solar Plexus Chakra / Yellow
Yellow symbolizes personal power, willpower, confidence, and mental activities. Hope, Laughter, Happiness & Joy.
Heart Chakra / Green
Green is connected to love, integration, balance, compassion, and relation. Nature, health, growth, & life.
Throat Chakra / Light Blue
Light blue or turquoise represents self expression, truth, honesty, serenity, loyalty, communication, & Relief.
Third Eye Chakra / Dark blue
Dark blue or indigo is for intuition, extrasensory perception, mystery, respect and inner wisdom. Hope, reason, & peace.
Crown Chakra / Purple
Purple, violet, or white represents universal, spiritual awakening, and consciousness. Calmness, serenity noble, & glamorous.
Colors in the human body
Red – Bones, bone marrow, spine, muscles, heart, blood circulation.
Orange – Glands, Adrenals, sex organs, increase energy
Yellow – Nervous system, digestive, and immune systems
Green – Lungs, lung tissues, circulatory system
Blue – Etheric body, optimal bodily functions
Purple – Fascia, skin
The aura can be seen as the electromagnetic field that surrounds the body. Its colors reflect the energy flowing through the chakras and can be correlated to the state of the various bodily functions, as well as emotions and other psycho-spiritual elements. For instance, even though heart energy may generally be depicted as green, it sometimes radiates in shades of pink when one feels into strong emotional qualities of love and compassion. Red, which is generally associated with the root chakra, can be colored differently depending on the strength and quality of the energy in this center. It could for example go from deep burgundy red to a lighter orange red.
To use color theory for spiritual growth, find the color that's associated with your intention and use it by:
Eating foods of that color.
Wearing the color.
Meditating on the color.
Working with crystals in that color.
Adding that color to your surroundings with flowers or decor in your house and environment.
Mantras for each color
“I am secure and grounded”
“I manifest abundantly”
“I am co-creating with spirit”
“I am connected to the universe around me”
“My mind and spirit are in harmony”
“I am radiating confidence and joy”
“I heal with ease”
“I receive abundantly from the universe”
“I am open to giving and reviewing unconditional love”
“I am speaking my truth”
“I communicate freely with light and love”
Dark Blue / Indigo
“I am connected to the divine source”
“I am a child of the universe”
“I live in peace with all things”
“My life is a spiritual journey”