It doesn’t matter what line of work you’re in, you need a creative environment to be at your best. From the colors that surround you to the intangible feeling of cohesiveness, business owners, employees (both remote and on-site), and even visiting clients should have a place that facilitates innovation, collaboration, and comfort.
According to the Dictionary of Creativity, a creative environment is defined as the physical, social, and cultural environment in which creative activity occurs. These areas include zones of concentration and absorption wherein “people can become deeply absorbed in their creative work, and they can achieve levels of concentration not available in other settings.”
Below, we highlight eight of the smartest aesthetic choices that help boost creativity and innovation in the workplace.
1. Pick the Right Colors
Blue, Green, Yellow, and Red have all been shown to increase and increase workflow. However, each color has its own benefits.
According to a report by Entrepreneur, blue is best for building a stable and calming environment that helps people stay focused. Also, on the cooler side of the color wheel is green, which is superb for working long hours and burning the midnight oil. This is partially due to the fact that it doesn’t cause eye fatigue the way other colors do.
Over on the warmer side is yellow. This sunny color is known to promote optimism and stimulate creativity. Lastly, red is great for tasks that involve physical labor as it raises the heart rate, increases blood flow, and evokes emotion. On the flip side, yellow and red are also known to make you hungry, hence the following suggestion.
2. Pack Some Snacks
What snack packs the most punch, you ask? Scientists have dubbed blueberries, “brain berries” after discovering their phytochemical power. After studying nutritional modulation of cognitive decline, neuroscientist James Joseph has discovered that these tiny, dark-hued fruits actually intervene with our brains at the molecular level, helping our minds to be maximally responsive to incoming messages and even prompting the growth of new nerve cells.
If you can’t get your mitts on some berries, settle for one of the cheapest fruits in the bunch: a banana. This lean source of manganese, potassium, and carbohydrates will give you the nutrients you need to stay sharp. Start your day off with one of these phallic fruits and you’ll stay satiated until lunchtime.
Research suggests that a little red wine may keep you in work mode longer due to its heavy dose of antioxidants (concord grape juice has the highest total antioxidant level of any fruit or vegetable), which helps increase motor skills and short-term memory.
3. Take the Edge Off
If there is a way to cut down on the amount of 90-degree angles in your office or workspace, take it
When assessing aesthetics, curves activated the anterior cingulate cortex exclusively. This region of the brain is extremely influential, and to a high degree is responsible for linking behavioral outcomes to motivation, positive emotional responses, and emotional salience to objects and shapes.
Considering how much of our time we spend indoors—around 90% of our lives, to be exact—we might as well enjoy the space in which we dwell. Vatican writes:
“The results suggest that the well-established effect of contour on aesthetic preference can be extended to architecture. Furthermore, the combination of our behavioral and neural evidence underscores the role of emotion in our preference for curvilinear objects in this domain.”
These innate responses evolved from perceiving environments as either favorable or unfavorable to survival. The level of observed beauty in a particular area then is filtered through both today’s standards of aesthetics and an intrinsic, prehistoric lens.
Because curved and rounded edges have a way of putting the subconscious mind at ease through signaling safety, it opens up cognitive space for creativity. Arcs, cylindrical patterns, and smooth transitions through the workspace can spark conversation, allow for the more organic movement, and foster a stronger sense of community.
Psychologist Robert Epstein, PHD argues that there is no “evidence that one person is inherently more creative than another.” He asserts that creativity is actually something you can cultivate.