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This Is How Simply Changing The Lighting Can Make You Perform Better

This Is How Simply Changing The Lighting Can Make You Perform Better

We have all experienced, either consciously or subconsciously, the different effects that lighting can have on us: the disco light ball enhances the upbeat feeling we get on the dance floor, an entirely different atmosphere is created by a candle lit dinner. However, have you thought that lighting can affect your performance significantly?

In a study published in the journal Optics Express, Kyungah Choi and Hyeon-Jeong Suk look at the way lighting can boost student success in the classroom.

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Research Background

In the preliminary and main study, Choi and Suk examined the effects of different correlated color temperatures (CCTs). The CCT characterizes the color of a given light source. A low CCT gives out a light that appears “warm” or yellowish white. A high CCT gives out a light that appears “cool” or bluish white.

The Preliminary Study

In the preliminary study that was conducted in a laboratory using adult volunteers, Suk and Choi examined the effects of different CCT lighting conditions on the adults’ levels of physiological alertness. They did this by taking an electrocardiogram (ECG), a type of measurement that is affected by the alerted state of a person. The study took place in a room that had an LED luminous ceiling. The researchers could control the CCTs of the lighting.

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Results

It was found that the 6500 K lighting condition caused the highest level of physiological alertness, and that the 3500 K condition caused the volunteers to feel the most relaxed.

Main Study

In the main study, Choi and Suk studied two classrooms of fourth-grade students. The students were taking math tests. In one classroom, there were LED lights that could be tuned to a CCT of 3500 K (a “warm” or yellowish white light), 5000 K (a neutral light), and 6500 K (a “cool” or bluish white light akin to natural daylight). The other classroom was fitted with standard fluorescent lights — this classroom acted as the control.

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Results

The students achieved the best math test scores when they worked under the 6500 K lighting condition. When they were exposed to 3500 K lighting, they performed best on recess activities.

“The preliminary study and the field experiment fully supported a positive effect of 6500 K lighting on academic performance and 3500 K lighting on encouraging recess activities,” said Choi.

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The students were also interviewed by the researchers to see if they noticed any changes in the lighting and/or their academic success.

According to Suk, “We were surprised by the fact that besides observing the performance improvement during the mathematical test, the interview results with young children — who have almost no background knowledge on lighting — were also in line with our empirical results.” Based on this information, Suk stated “This shows that the effect of lighting was direct and intuitive and that anyone, regardless of age or level of knowledge, could experience and be aware.”

Conclusion and Suggestions

The researchers came to the conclusion that the 6500 K “cool” light may be used to support a student’s learning during intensive academic activities, the 5000 K neutral light is good for reading activities, and the 3500 K “warm” light can be used to create a relaxed atmosphere that may be used when a recess activity is taking place.

Lighting may thus prove to be a useful tool in the classroom. A teacher can better control the mood of the class and the learning environment if he or she has the ability to adjust the lights as they see appropriate. This may be a real possibility as the research team have created a mobile-app-based dynamic lighting system that allows one to choose the lighting conditions of “easy,” “standard,” and “intensive”.

More by this author

Rebecca Beris

Rebecca is a wellness and lifestyle writer at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on November 19, 2019

7 Signs That You’re Way Too Busy

7 Signs That You’re Way Too Busy

“Busy” used to be a fair description of the typical schedule. More and more, though, “busy” simply doesn’t cut it.

“Busy” has been replaced with “too busy”, “far too busy”, or “absolutely buried.” It’s true that being productive often means being busy…but it’s only true up to a point.

As you likely know from personal experience, you can become so busy that you reach a tipping point…a point where your life tips over and falls apart because you can no longer withstand the weight of your commitments.

Once you’ve reached that point, it becomes fairly obvious that you’ve over-committed yourself.

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The trick, though, is to recognize the signs of “too busy” before you reach that tipping point. A little self-assessment and some proactive schedule-thinning can prevent you from having that meltdown.

To help you in that self-assessment, here are 7 signs that you’re way too busy:

1. You Can’t Remember the Last Time You Took a Day Off

Occasional periods of rest are not unproductive, they are essential to productivity. Extended periods of non-stop activity result in fatigue, and fatigue results in lower-quality output. As Sydney J. Harris once said,

“The time to relax is when you don’t have time for it.”

2. Those Closest to You Have Stopped Asking for Your Time

Why? They simply know that you have no time to give them. Your loved ones will be persistent for a long time, but once you reach the point where they’ve stopped asking, you’ve reached a dangerous level of busy.

3. Activities like Eating Are Always Done in Tandem with Other Tasks

If you constantly find yourself using meal times, car rides, etc. as times to catch up on emails, phone calls, or calendar readjustments, it’s time to lighten the load.

It’s one thing to use your time efficiently. It’s a whole different ballgame, though, when you have so little time that you can’t even focus on feeding yourself.

4. You’re Consistently More Tired When You Get up in the Morning Than You Are When You Go to Bed

One of the surest signs of an overloaded schedule is morning fatigue. This is a good indication that you’ve not rested well during the night, which is a good sign that you’ve got way too much on your mind.

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If you’ve got so much to do that you can’t even shut your mind down when you’re laying in bed, you’re too busy.

5. The Most Exercise You Get Is Sprinting from One Commitment to the Next

It’s proven that exercise promotes healthy lives. If you don’t care about that, that’s one thing. If you’d like to exercise, though, but you just don’t have time for it, you’re too busy.

If the closest thing you get to exercise is running from your office to your car because you’re late for your ninth appointment of the day, it’s time to slow down.

Try these 5 Ways to Find Time for Exercise.

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6. You Dread Getting up in the Morning

If your days are so crammed full that you literally dread even starting them, you’re too busy. A new day should hold at least a small level of refreshment and excitement. Scale back until you find that place again.

7. “Survival Mode” Is Your Only Mode

If you can’t remember what it feels like to be ahead of schedule, or at least “caught up”, you’re too busy.

So, How To Get out of Busyness?

Take a look at these articles to help you get unstuck:

Featured photo credit: Khara Woods via unsplash.com

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