Stepping into spring with colourful confidence!

Claire Dunworth-Warby, a personal, business and education coach, discusses how to be sure that you are creating the impression you want to with the colours you are using in your life.

Culturally speaking, every colour has a ‘meaning’ and can inspire different emotions in both yourself and in the eyes of beholders – whether it’s the colours of the clothes we wear or how we decorate our homes and offices or shops. These choices can create certain effects – whether we are aware of them or not – and it’s important to bear this in mind, particularly if you are about to go for a job interview for example.

So, here’s a short, very basic introduction.

Feeling blue…

Blue is often cited as the most popular colour by both sexes. It can have both positive and negative connotations with regard to symbolism, just think about a lovely blue sky on a sunny day and how it boosts your positivity and well-being as a symbol of joyfulness. On the other hand, it can represent sadness – think about the expression ‘feeling blue’.

In terms of creating an impression, blue invokes an air of professionalism and reliability – so it comes as no surprise that a lot of uniforms or corporate colours are blue tones. Using the softer hues of blue has a soothing effect – useful to remember if you want to be cool, calm and collected in a certain situation. If blue is not your favourite colour but you want to create this serene effect so that you can handle a difficult situation better, consider a smaller item such as a scarf, a tie or a piece of jewellery.

Knock ’em dead in red…

Now let’s think about red. The positive side of red is that it can represent warmth – imagining the inviting glow of a fire in the depths of winter gives you an immediate inner warmth. The converse, of course, is the negative image, ‘the red mist’, anger and rage and the unhappiness that can invoke. With regard to impressions, red can create a sense of urgency – hence the reason that retailers’ sales signs are often red to entice us to make a speedy purchase or two. When you wear red, it can show that you are enthusiastic and energetic, a ‘can-do’ sort of person. If this is the impression you want to give, then go for it. However, it is a bold colour so bear this in mind and use with caution!

Green credentials…

Positively, the ‘natural’ greens are traditionally associated with freshness and tranquillity. They are also seen as positive and contemporary because of the recent increase in awareness of green issues and the environment. On the other hand, certain greens can be connected with illness (looking rather ‘green around the gills’), unpleasant textures such as ‘slimy green’ and jealousy (‘the green-eyed monster’). Regarding the impression created, green is a relaxing colour. It not only relaxes you but those around you too. It has the power to lift your mood and create an atmosphere of harmony. It can be the colour to have around you in terms of both interior design and clothing (or accessories if you prefer to use the colour in small amounts) if you want to increase your sense of well-being.

So, armed with this starter’s guide, step into spring with more confidence about the impression you are creating!

Claire Dunworth-Warby of Aspire Associates Coaching is a Personal, Business and Education Coach working with individuals and organisations one-to-one, over the phone or online and leading workshops across the UK. Training the trainers is also available. For more information or a free taster session contact her on 01746 765104 or visit www.aspire-coaching.biz

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