When you say you're "in the pink" or "feeling blue," you're not just talking slang. You're talking science.

That's because colors actually give off electromagnetic wave "bands" of energy-with each shade having its own wavelength. It doesn't matter if it's paint on a wall or a picture, a bright flower or a piece of clothing: Scientists say these color waves send impulses to the pituitary and pineal glands in the brain, which control mood, energy levels, and heart rate.

COLORS FOR ENERGY

If you're looking for an energy boost, below is a cheat sheet to the best color choices. Just keep in mind that it's best to find your own particular color profile. While yellow is the best energizing color for most people, there is no one color that has exactly the same effect on everyone. A lot of it depends on your personality-whether you're an introvert or an extrovert.

Introverts benefit most from colors that excite-warm hues of yellows, oranges, and reds. But these colors can overstimulate extroverts, who usually run on full throttle. Cooler colors like blues and greens may be better to help extroverted people relax and recharge their batteries for more energy.

YES

Yellow: Cheers and energizes; when you need long-term energy, yellow is a good choice for rooms and clothing.

Orange: Cheers and stimulates appetite and conversation; a good overall energy booster.

Red: Stimulates and dramatizes; best used as an accent color, like wearing a red scarf when you want to generate ideas or having accent pillows as opposed to four walls painted red.

MAYBE

Blue: Relaxes, refreshes, and promotes peaceful moods; good for times when you need to relax and recharge.

Orange: Cheers and stimulates appetite and conversation; a good overall energy booster.

NO

Black: Strengthens and encourages discipline; a poor choice for energy.

White: Serene and cool; off-white or eggshell is a better choice for energy if you have to go neutral.

Purple: Comforts, spiritualizes, and encourages intuition; generally not a good choice for an energy boost.

POWER FROM THE PALETTE

Now here's how to put those colors to work for you.

Get smart with art. If you find the idea of repainting your walls anything but energizing, take an easier route-which might be even better for boosting energy: Hang paintings, posters, and other pieces of artwork. The more colors there are, the better. Make sure it's something you like-and will continue to like.

Floor 'em. Try adding a colorful rug to energize a room.

Energize your work space. You probably don't have the freedom to repaint your work space, but you can probably hang an energizing red or yellow poster or painting. Or buy flowers in bright colors-roses or black-eyed Susans-and place them in a vase on your desk. Even just keeping a sheet of paper in an energizing color handy can work.

Dress for success. Even if you can't redecorate your environment, you can still energize your surroundings. Dress in energizing colors like yellow, red, and orange, or at least include splashes of those colors in scarves, ties, and other accessories.