Don’t just wait until your sweetheart appears with a bouquet of fresh blooms to give your home some floral flair. The health benefits of adorning your home with frest cut flowers are most definitely worth splurging on the blossoms for yourself! Science proves it, so make sure you read on…
Flowers in your home
Nancy Etcoff (PhD of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School) conducted a behavioural research study in Boston (Sept, 2006) revealed that people feel more compassionate towards others, experience less anxiety and worry, and ultimately feel happier when flowers are present in their home.
The Home Ecology of Flowers Study at Harvard uncovered three main findings:
Flowers feed Compassion
Study participants who lived with fresh-cut flowers for less than a week felt an increase in feelings of compassion and kindness for others.
Living with flowers can provide a boost of energy, happiness and enthusiasm at work
Flowers at home can have a carryover effect on your mood at work, too! The study showed that people were more likely to feel happier and have more energy at work when flowers were in their home living environment. Similarly, having flowers and plants at work can also have an impact on your productivity, read more here.
Flowers chase away anxieties, worries and the blues
The results suggest that flowers have a positive impact on our well-being. Overall, people in the study simply felt less negative after being around flowers at home for just a few days. Participants most frequently placed flowers in their kitchens, dining rooms and living rooms – those areas of the home where they spend a lot of time. They reported wanting to see the blooms first thing in the morning.
Etcoff was also surprised at the long-lasting effects flowers had on individuals moods. “What I find most interesting is that, by starting the day in a more positive mood, you are likely to transfer those happier feelings to others – it’s what is called mood contagion,” Etcoff explains. “And, the kitchen is the place where families tend to gather in the morning. Imagine how big a difference a better morning mood can make?”
Further to Etcoff’s study, other research has found that flowers improve emotional health (Rutgers, Journal of Evolutionary Psychology). Specifically, study participants reported feeling less depressed, anxious and agitated after receiving flowers, and demonstrated a higher sense of enjoyment and life satisfaction. Along with helping you sleep, improving memory and make you more productive.
Not only do cut flowers have a profound positive effect on our emotions, but gardening has also been found to be good for our mental health. Did you know that connecting with nature has a whole myriad of benefits?
A 2015 study found that 88% of people cited mental wellbeing as a reason for heading out into the garden. Digging, planting and pruning provides fresh air and a sense of achievement. Spending time in nature can help to put things into perspective, lower cortisol levels, improve overall health and boost your creativity.
Some people find value in having something to care for that relies on them to survive. Gardening is also an activity to do as a group, spending time with friends and family.
More ways to boost your mood
When it comes to mental health, we are all different. What work for one person, may not necessarily work for another. We’re here to help you find out what works best for you. Here are some useful resources.