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Happy? Bask In A Bright Room For More Bliss
Imagine if you could control the intensity of your emotions with a dimmer switch. According to a study published in theJournal of Consumer Psychology, you just might be able to.
[sidebar]Brightness from incandescent lighting, like the glow from your living room lamp, revs up our emotional responses, concludes the researchers from the University of Toronto and Northwestern University. That is, you’ll experience something more intensely—whether it’s good or bad—in brighter light.
To show a link between brightness and emotional intensity, the researchers placed 98 male and female participants in bright- and dim-lit rooms. They reviewed a script about a man who acted aggressively and rated him on how hot-tempered, hostile, powerful, and strong he appeared. Those in the bright room rated him as more aggressive than those in the dimly lit room.
Psychologists aren’t surprised by the findings. “The lighting is an environmental cue for our bodily responses as well as our emotion responses,” says Judy Ho, PhD, a professor at Pepperdine University Graduate School of Education and Psychology in California. Ramani Durvasula, PhD, a professor at California State University, Los Angeles, agrees and points out that the intensity increased the positive and negative situations. “If you want to have a conversation with someone and don't want them to get too agitated, have it in a dim room,” Dr. Durvasula suggests.
But don't think this is a seasonal affective disorder study. “Going outside or using a full-spectrum light lamp may make you feel more positive,” notes Eileen Kennedy-Moore, PhD, a psychologist who practices privately in Princeton, New Jersey.
Video: How much light does my plant need? 🌿 🌞
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