Research by UK economist and behavioural scientist Professor Paul Dolan found that gardeners and florists are the happiest of all professions. Much happier than people in more well paid and prestigious jobs.
A behavioural research study conducted by Dr Nancy Etcoff of the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, reveals that – when fresh cut flowers are present in the home – people feel more compassionate toward others, have fewer worries and anxiety, and feel less depressed.
The Home Ecology of Flowers Study at Harvard uncovered three main findings:
1. Flowers feed compassion
Study participants who lived with fresh-cut flowers felt an increase in feelings of compassion and kindness towards others.
2. Flowers chase away anxieties, worries and the blues
Overall, people in the study 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 most time. They reported a need to see blooms first thing in the morning. Etcoff explains that in general: “The morning blues, it turns out, is a real phenomenon, with positive moods – happiness, friendliness and warmth, for example – manifesting much later in the day.” She adds: “Interestingly, when we placed a small bouquet of flowers into their morning routines, people perked up.”
3. Living with flowers can provide a boost of energy, happiness and enthusiasm at work
Having flowers at home can have a carryover impact on your mood at work, too. The study found that people were more likely to feel happier and display more enthusiasm and energy at work when flowers brightened up their home living environments.