Can your mood be affected by lighting?
So I’ve been thinking about lighting. I mean about what makes a room pleasant for some people and unpleasant for other people.
I’ve realized that people have different lighting preferences.
I went to a restaurant with my daughter this week. I thought it was great. It had a very nice feel to it.
It had a lot of dark wood, light tables, and a little bit of red leather here and there. The ceilings were tall and the windows let him quite a bit of light.
I commented about what a nice feel the restaurant had. My daughter said that a friend of hers doesn’t like the restaurant at all. She said that he has a problem with the quality of light in the restaurant. He finds it too bright and it makes him and it makes the whole dining experience uncomfortable.
His house has a giant fluorescent ceiling light in the kitchen and two countertop lamps. He never uses the fluorescent light because it’s too bright and sterile. He always uses the two lamps instead.
Also when he first walks into his house, he goes through the house and turns on all of the lamps. He really likes enough light, but it has to be a particular kind. He doesn’t like florescent.
I was interested to hear this because I am the same way. I am actually very picky about light quality.
I like lots of light. When I was designing my first house, I intentionally designed the windows to be extra large. They let in a ton of light and I loved it that way.
I do like privacy, so at the end of the day, I will close blinds and shades and curtains. But I only do that when the good light of the day is gone and it’s dark outside.
In the morning when I get up, the first thing I do is open the curtains. If it’s really early then I will turn on lights, and then as soon as it’s light outside, the curtains get drawn back and the blinds go up.
There are some places I go regularly where the lighting just drives me crazy. It’s because generally it’s too dark. I always say to myself that if I lived there, the first thing I would do would be to bring in more lamps.
I realized it’s not just a picky preference. It actually has to do with my emotional well-being. A room that’s too dark feels closed down claustrophobic, and depressing.
A room that is full of light makes me feel like I am full of light also.
In my daycare, I make sure that there’s plenty of good light everywhere. Even in the cozy reading corners, lamps provide good light. There is nothing depressing about the light in those corners. It may be subdued, but it still is warm and strong.
I have wondered where I get my strong light preferences. I know my mother always had an affinity for well-lit spaces. If that’s what I grew up with, maybe that got translated into my imprint.
The curious thing is that my daughter is not the same as me regarding light preferences. She doesn’t mind at all rooms that are dim with covered windows.
Or maybe this is one of those things skips a generation. (Just kidding.)