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Need a Creative Boost? Hit the Dimmer Switch and Purchase CFL Lights.

 

One more reason to add a light dimmer switch to your home or office – a recent study published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology finds dark rooms may improve creativity.

When someone enters a room, he or she receives visual cues as to how to behave and appear. In turn, they must decide whether to behave as if in an open and welcoming environment or a confining one.

According to findings, dark rooms promote a more global perspective, which can enhance creativity.

That’s not surprising since previous research has shown soft light is often relaxing (that’s why you love to work from the coffee shop down the street) and makes people feel safe. Such environments can also make them more apt to take risks – from writing harsh reviews online to hugging a stranger – because they don’t feel they are being watched or under pressure to act a certain way.

Two researchers based in Germany, Anna Steidle and Lioba Werth, used six experiments to observe different aspects of creativity. The first three studies primed participants by having them describe a dark or bright environment or do a word search where the words were related to one of two illuminations. From there, creativity was measured by an imagination task, an alternative-use game or a speed-accuracy test.

LED Lights - Need a Creative Boost? Hit the Dimmer Switch.

Priming dark conditions induces a risky, more explorative behavior, leading to creativity, Steidle concluded. But to generalize it, she and her partner had to use actual lighting variations.

In the fourth study, subjects were placed in one of three types of rooms: dim, bright, or a control room, where the light was at the level recommended level for offices. Participants sat in the room for fifteen minutes before beginning a creative logic task, which was then followed by a self-evaluation of how comfortable they had felt.

Turns out the dimmer rooms promoted more insight problem-solving, as well as higher levels of comfort among the participants.

There was one caveat: The researchers noted dim light didn’t promote creativity if the participants felt inhibited. And dimmer light might hinder analytical, logical tasks.

If you want to design a creative workspace, consider grabbing a dimmer light switch or two, CFL lights and dimmable bulbs, and adding plants and windows. Also, don’t forget to check in with everyone in the office to make sure they feel comfortable as well.

—The EnergyEarth Team

© 2013 Energy Earth LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Via Inc.com

Let Light Bulbs Dream

July 4th, 2013 | Posted by EnergyEarth in Green Tips - (0 Comments)

Let Light Bulbs Dream {The Dirt on Green}

 

Design company Hudson-Powell created this endearing poster, encouraging us to show light bulbs a bit of compassion and turn them off when not in use.

Simply can’t seem to remember to flip that switch off? Check out these energy saving lighting controls that will help you save money and energy without a second thought.

Love the poster? Buy it here. All proceeds go to Do the Green Thing, a non-profit organization that aims to inspire people to lead a greener life.

—The EnergyEarth Team

Via Do the Green Thing.

© 2013 Energy Earth LLC. All Rights Reserved.

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen

June 11th, 2013 | Posted by EnergyEarth in Green Tips - (0 Comments)

1. Install a low flow faucet aerator. Faucet aerators not only reduce water consumption, they’ll save you around $50 each year in related energy costs.

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}

2. Check your refrigerator and freezer’s temperatures with a refrigerator thermometer or an eco-friendly temperature card. Setting your refrigerator and freezer at the best temperature is essential – a fridge that is 10°F (5°C) degrees colder than necessary uses 25% more energy. Refrigerators should be kept between 35°F (1°C) and 38F (3°C), freezers at 0°F (-17°C).

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green} 7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}

3. Go natural with dish soaps and kitchen cleaners. Many dish soaps and detergents are harmful, water-polluting aren’t biodegradable. Instead, choose plant-based, biodegradable soaps cleaners to wash dishes and clean counters or make your own.

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}

4. Change out your overhead lighting for LED lights and CFL bulbs. Highly efficient lighting goes beyond selecting the right light bulb. A wide range of energy saving light bulbs, fixtures and accessories can make any space beautiful and efficient.

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}

5. Keep a water pitcher in your fridge. Kick the water bottle and for cool, clean tap water (if the water in your area is safe to drink) without having to run the sink to let the water run cold. You’ll save plastic and money. Fancy it up with a few citrus wedges or cucumber slices.

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}

6. Monitor your appliances. Energy monitoring devices provide clear data on where electricity goes, how efficiently it’s used and what the costs are. A monitor isn’t a substitute for your electricity bill; however, it can provide a good indication of how much a particular appliance is costing you. 

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}

7. Invest in quality reusable food storage containers. You’ll save by keeping food fresher longer and using less disposable packaging like plastic wrap and tin foil! 

7 Tips to Green Your Kitchen {The Dirt on Green}

—The EnergyEarth Team

© 2013 Energy Earth LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Local Recycling Center

1. Recycle your light bulbs! Incandescent bulbs, CFLs and LEDs alike can be recycled. Check with your local recycling service to see if you can drop them in your curbside bin. If not, try these options:

Incandescents: Next time you make a trip to IKEA, load up your inefficient bulbs. Most stores offer incandescent light bulb recycling.

CFLs: Pick up a Veolia RecyclePak or two and ship them off to a special recycling center designed to handle them safely. Easy!

LEDs: With an average rated life of 25,000 hours, you’ll be hard-pressed to even have LEDs to recycle. But if you do, check with your local hardware store to see if they’ll accept them.

2. Start a recycling club at your school! It could actually be tons of fun, help you meet new people and help the environment.

3. Make your own reusable shopping bags and keep them in your car or a couple in your purse so you’ll have them whenever you go shopping. You can even drop off old plastic shopping bags for recycling while you’re at the grocery store.

4. Grab a couple of bins and place them somewhere convenient, such as your kitchen or home office. Get a traditional blue bin, an old trash can, a paper bag or cardboard box – whatever best fits your style – and use them!

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5. Keep old, dead batteries out of landfills with a Veolia Battery Recycling Pail. It holds up to 15lbs. and can handle any dry cell battery you can throw at it. Then, invest in some rechargeable batteries.

6. Donate old clothes, housewares, appliances and whatever you have around the house that you aren’t using anymore. You’ll give your old stuff new life and help someone in need.

7. Use food scraps instead of fertilizer on your lawn and garden with a compost bin. You’ll reduce waste and save money at the same time!

—The EnergyEarth Team

© 2013 Energy Earth LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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