It comes as no surprise that in this day and age, with all of the daily pressures and fast paced lifestyles that we lead with our families, jobs, and endless responsibilities and commitments, stress is anything but a stranger. Couple that with long, cold winter months with layers upon layers of inversion and little sunlight, is it any wonder that our outlook on life and overall well being is waining a bit?
While Netflix binge watching and left over Christmas candy can surely offer a quick fix, behavioral research conducted by the State University of New Jersey has come out with a study that states that nature might offer just what we need to lift our spirits when our emotional health is in need of boost. According to this research, the very presence of flowers not only heightens our feeling of satisfaction, but also triggers happy emotions and positively affects social behavior. This link between flowers and improved feelings of well being was explored in a 10-month study of people’s behavioral and emotional responses to getting flowers, and the findings were such that flowers were found to have an immediate impact on happiness. Genuine delight and sincere smiles and gratitude were expressed upon receiving flowers, and this reaction was consistent among all age groups.
“What’s most exciting about this study is that it challenges established scientific beliefs about how people can manage their day-to-day moods in a healthy and natural way,” said Jeannette Haviland-Jones, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology at Rutgers and lead researcher on the study.
Participants of the study reported feeling less depressed, anxious and agitated after receiving flowers, and showed an increased sense of enjoyment and happiness. “Common sense tells us that flowers make us happy,” said Dr. Haviland-Jones. “Now, science shows that not only do flowers make us happier than we know, they have strong positive effects on our emotional well being.”
So maybe keep the Netflix binge watching (because that is always a good idea), but trade in the stale candy and empty calories for a healthier and happier alternative of fresh flowers that will bring joy to you and everyone in your home!