Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Power of Colour

I'd like to take a brief detour from our sew-along and giveaway loveliness to share an article with you that touches on a subject with great meaning for me.  Recently I was contacted by Jackie Clark, asking if she could share an article with my readers discussing the power of colour and how is helps those recovering from traumatic illness, cancer in specific.

Jackie is a tireless researcher and blog contributor for the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance. Having spent the greater part of my career in cancer treatment and research, I immediately jumped at the chance to be involved, no matter how small my part.  

Colour is so powerful.  It can lift your mood or dampen  it.  It can become a uniform or a means of self-expression.  Below is Jackie's article about using colour to improve your health and overall mood from a recovery standpoint.  However, I feel it is also relevant to those of us who deal with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) or are simply dealing with too much winter. 

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Think about the colors that make you happy. If you are someone who loves feminine things and a soft style, you may be drawn over and over again to soft pastels like rose and raspberry. On the other hand, if you are more like a force of nature, you might like turbulent blues and bright forest greens. Yet again, if you are a stable and solid person who draws their strength from the earth, you might find that chocolate browns and creams suit you. When you are feeling down with mesothelioma cancer or any other difficult prognosis, you’ll find that this is a terrific time to think colorfully.

If you spend a lot of time in doctors’ waiting rooms and offices, you know that there is not a lot of color. These places are supposed to be soothing, but all too often, they simply end up being tiresome and frustrating instead. You may feel like you are always on the verge of going to sleep, or that you are perpetually surrounded by taupe; the only color that you see is the color that you brought in with you, and this is where fashion comes in.

Fashion is one way for you to take control when you are looking at cancer recovery, and one thing that is true about all fashion anywhere is that it is all about the color. Color can re-energize you when you feel worn out, and it can make you feel beautiful and desirable when you are feeling your lowest. Fashion and by extension color are some of the most important tools that you can wield when you are considering moving forward with your life, so think about where your options are going to be and what you want.
Think about the colors that suit you, and consider how you can move forward to take advantage of the colors that you like. For example, if you are always feeling chilled and tired, you’ll discover that warm gold and red tones can keep you warm. If you would rather be out on the ocean or in the forests, wear plenty of blues and greens. This is one way to gather strength to face the challenges in front of you.

When you wear your favorite fashions, you’ll find that you are in a place where you are taking control. You are making choices that no one can gainsay, and you are making them without needing to consult anyone else at all.

Take control of your life again using the tools that are in front of you. No matter what stage you are at in your recovery, there are a great many options open to you, so think about the colors you love and you are going to be looking your best very soon.


Lynne Williams said...

Awesome to pin for a future reminder and to share with others

snippa said...

Interesting post.
Note to self - hospital visit on Wednesday, wear something nice.

poppykettle said...

Colour and I have been in a passionate love affair for as long as I can remember. I went out to the shops last week (normal retail ones, not fabric ones) and actually came out a bit depressed because all the autumn and winter stock has come in (I'm in the southern hemisphere) and of course it's all black, brown and blah. Why is it that colder weather has to usher in such a horrid colour palette? It's exactly the right time to bring in MORE colour to offset the dreary climate.

That said, the last few years has seen me involved in designing new-built hospitals - and I've been impressed at the focus on creating a pleasant, calming and appealing environment - especially in children's hospitals. Both projects I've worked on had special consultants to choose colours that made people feel happy, and there was a huge focus on including pockets of gardens so you could 'escape' to another environment. So I think there is increased understanding at how our surrounds affect us - but unfortunately budgets don't always stretch that far for buildings of yesteryear...

Alexandra said...

I love this! It's really made me realise how important it is to inject colour into my wardrobe, especially over the past year or so, when I've been suffering from health problems. Time to pull out those colourful scarves, I think!

oonaballoona said...

i mean seriously. my mood lifted instantly just looking at the colored pencils!

Alessa said...

Good post! Color is one reason I applied to do my internship at an anthroposophic hospital. They paint their walls in lovely yellows and blues. :D