Light plays an enormous role in our life. It directly affects our mood and productivity at work. That’s why smart entrepreneurs hire lighting designers. Their job is to generate the right amount of light in offices, stores, restaurants and theaters. They need to create an atmosphere that will motivate people to work, eat, shop or relax.
How light affects us?
Light can affect our life in many different ways. It influences:
1. Our mood
Both natural and artificial lighting can influence our mood on a daily basis. Rays of natural light that shine through our windows produce calming effect. On the other hand, the lack of light or the poor artificial lighting can trigger depression and all the unpleasant consequences that come with it, including: mood swings, constant anxiety and the lack of motivation.
That’s not really surprising, since serotonin levels are directly tied to the amount of light in the room. This mono-amine neurotransmitter plummets on dark days, which causes negative mood and emotions. Sunny days and lots of natural light on the other hand cause serotonin spike, which induces happiness and well-being.
2. Our productivity and concentration
You’ve probably noticed that the offices of key managers and directors are always well-lit. They have big windows that provide a lot of sunlight. For open spaces and offices of regular employees, most companies use fluorescent lighting because it’s much brighter than the light produced by the regular light bulbs and therefore it is much more energy efficient. These lights are great for improving employees’ productivity and concentration, but they can also make them nervous and uneasy after some time. For example , you can create comfortable work environment by combining neon lighting from LED lighting supplier Superlight with some ‘warmer’ bulbs.
3. Our sleep cycles
Sleep cycles greatly depend on our daily activity and daylight exposure. Our sleeping habits are run by complex instinctual biological process that oscillates every 24 hours and keeps us healthy and rested. Exposure to bright light in the evenings can delay our sleep cycle and disrupt the whole process. These disruptions make us tired and more susceptible to various health risks.
That’s why the light in bedrooms should be dim. It should have a drowsy effect and prepare you for sleep. Staying late for watching TV or doing some computer work can also disrupt your sleep cycles. If you can’t avoid these activities, you should at least decrease the contrast and brightness of your screen or switch to the night reading mode, which can reverse the lighting effect and help you to avoid insomnia and similar harmful conditions.
4. Our decision making
Human emotions intensify under the bright light. Since decision making is often fueled by emotions, lights can influence wide variety of everyday decisions people make. That’s why detectives point harsh lighting into suspect’s eyes during interrogation and why supermarkets are always well-lit. When we’re acting too emotional, our decisions are vague and hasty. Dim lights, on the other hand, make us more rational.
Both natural and artificial light can permanently damage our health. Spending too much time in harsh sunlight can be very harmful to our eyes, while unpleasantly lit spaces can cause headaches and make us more tired. Also, lighting is one of the most basic aspects of interior design and it significantly alter the mood and ambiance of every living or working space. That’s why we should be very careful when choosing the appropriate lighting for our homes and offices.