“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.”
According to behavioural research conducted at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, nature provides us with a simple way to improve emotional health – flowers. The presence of flowers triggers happy emotions heightens feelings of life satisfaction and affects social behaviour in a positive manner far beyond what is normally believed.
“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.
In the 10-month study of participants’ behavioural and emotional responses to receiving flowers, a team of researchers found an positive relationship between flowers and life satisfaction. The results show that flowers are a natural and healthful moderator of moods.
- Flowers have an immediate impact on happiness. All study participants expressed “true” or “excited” smiles upon receiving flowers, demonstrating extraordinary delight and gratitude. This reaction was universal, occurring in all age groups.
- Flowers have a long-term positive effect on moods. Specifically, study participants reported feeling less depressed, anxious and agitated after receiving flowers, and demonstrated a higher sense of enjoyment and life satisfaction.
- Flowers make intimate connections. The presence of flowers led to increased contact with family and friends.
So were does the University at Rutgers study leave us. Especially since it has independently confirmed that regardless of a persons, gender, age or temperament, that for them flowers trigger positive emotions and promote our emotional well-being.
Yes. They found that people feel less anxiety when flowers are present. The overall feeling of satisfaction is heightened and, even, the mere presence of flowers improves social behaviour.
Yes. Estate agents have long known the benefits of flowers at the front entry of a home and restaurants with fresh flowers on the tables consistently receive higher ratings.
What’s important for you now? We have a few questions here which you might like to use as a prompt to ask you how you might use this study.
Could wildflowers planted through a highway median decrease road rage?
If flowers were in a classroom could that help with studying?
Could it make a difference to have flowers in a prison, even their cell?
If we are having doubt and fear, could flowers be used to hold the energy of this happiness in our hearts focused on long enough so we could actually appreciate that our true nature is the divine nature of happiness?
Could it make a difference to those who want to flourish in their lives to have flowers around?
We invite you to continue to ask questions that a relevant to yourself that may be linked to you and happiness
so again, in review, in the Rutgers study, people receiving flowers universally generated an immediate, involuntary smile response. In every case, 100% of the time, recipients responded to the flowers with what is known as the Duchenne smile—or, a “true smile’. No other gift in the study elicited that kind of response. Days later, the flower recipients still felt the happy affects.
We wonder and actually have this sentiment at the heart of this post and all of our work here. Instead of prescribing a pill to make people feel better, perhaps the best thing to do is a self-prescribed trip to your local florist.
Give them, receive them, have them in your environment and notice what you notice as you become inspired by flower and their power.
The London Flower Lover