REFRESH

How Lighting Can Influence Happiness In Your Home

Actual mood lighting.

15/06/2016 11:39 AM AEST | Updated July 15, 2016 12:54
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Let there be light.

Lighting, like the internet, is something we rarely think about.

It's there. It's useful. Though it's not until it stops working that we realise just how much we rely on it.

In recent years workplaces have established the benefits of "smart lighting" -- the concept of bringing the natural progression of light indoors -- allowing for reduced energy usage, reduced cost, better monitoring and best of all, improved productivity and wellbeing. And now, we're starting to see this technology infiltrate into the home.

So how does light enhance productivity exactly?

"Light is a fundamental ingredient in the regulation of our circadian rhythm," Belinda Williams, psychologist at The Whole Being Group told The Huffington Post Australia.

"We need cooler, blue lighting in the morning to trigger our sympathetic nervous system which is associated with alertness and we need warmer light in the evening to trigger the parasympathetic nervous system, which is associated with relaxation," Williams said.

And as far as our wellbeing goes, according to research conducted by Philips Lighting, 78 percent of Aussies feel more positive if they live in a light and bright environment.

Indeed, having the ability to control lighting in the home means we can help trigger our states of rest and arousal, working to enhance our periods of recovery.

Compared to offices without windows, workers with offices that had windows received 173 percent more daylight exposure during work hours and slept an average of 46 minutes more per night.

"This is hugely helpful for those doing shift work or for those of us with routines that differ from the natural lighting cycle. It means you can be a little more strategic in looking at your rest, recovery and arousal periods," Williams said.

A study conducted by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine linked workers' exposure to daylight with their sleeping patterns and overall quality of life.

Compared to offices without windows, workers with offices that had windows received 173 percent more daylight exposure during work hours and slept an average of 46 minutes more per night.

Plus, there was also a trend for these workers to be more physically active than those without windows.

In addition to aiding in sleeping patterns, Williams said lighting has the potential to boost mood and confidence.

"Having more control over lighting allows people to engage in work tasks, hobbies and have better relationships in the home setting," Williams said.

3 Ways To Get More Light In Your Life

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