10 Ways to Create Emotional Connections With Flowers
DECEMBER 24, 2020 What's not to love about flowers. They decorate our homes and special events, lift our spirits and invite us to build meaningful bonds. As the pandemic continues to impact daily life, flowers are more vital than ever for our health and well-being. While navigating through the challenges of this “new normal,” here are 10 ways to create emotional connections with flowers; they’ll bring a much-needed dose of happiness to break anyone out of a COVID or stress-induced funk.
1. Flowers gap physical distance. Since the onset of the pandemic, flowers have bridged the sudden, physical gaps experienced between friends, family and colleagues. As social distancing measures keep once-normal gatherings to a minimum, floral gifts have reconnected individuals, allowing for the celebration of “missed” moments.
2. Flowers stimulate emotional wellness. As sensory experiences, flowers trigger the release of endorphins and the brain’s “feel-good” chemicals. This makes them natural healers that can ease stress, positively impact moods and heighten life satisfaction.1Working with flowers also revives energies and enhances productivity. By improving emotional health, flowers are catalysts for building personal and interpersonal connections.
3. Flowers impact relationships. Historically, gifting flowers has symbolized the intent to invest in a relationship. So, the act of giving (or receiving) flowers inspires the development of intimate connections. When these kinds of relationships mature, oxytocin—the “love” or “bonding” hormone—is released, which makes individuals feel closer to one another. These bonds can lead to increased contact with loved ones, which is especially important during times of stress or adversity.
4. Flowers communicate without words. With their unique symbolism, flowers serve as an unspoken language. Since Victorian times, coded meanings have been associated with different flowers. Traces of this tradition (or floriography) still remain used today, with specific varieties conveying sentiments like affection, friendship, gratitude and sympathy. When words are not enough, count on flowers to help communicate heartfelt emotions—such as red roses and tulips to declare love, or mums and lilies to express condolences for a loss.
5. Flowers impact communities. The floral community has spread hope amid the pandemic using the power of flowers. With his “flower flashes”, for example, designer Lewis Miller of Lewis Miller Design has transformed New York City’s most unassuming spots into elaborate floral installations. Miller and his team have strategically placed many of these displays by hospitals to honor healthcare and other essential workers. Similarly, florists across the U.S. have decorated streets and local landmarks with flowers from postponed or canceled events.
6. Flowers connect individuals with local businesses. For anyone in need of a floral pick-me-up, or those looking for a thoughtful gift, try shopping local and buy a bouquet from a florist or flower market. Each stem sold supports countless jobs, which ultimately strengthens local economies. By connecting people with local businesses through floral purchases, anyone can make a difference in their community!
7. Flowers encourage goodwill. Flowers are often the protagonists of random acts of kindness. Throughout the pandemic, bouquets have been donated to essential workers, nursing homes and complete strangers, impacting lives in the simplest of ways. There is even an entire day dedicated to celebrating the goodwill power of flowers. Every year since 2015, the Society of American Florists has hosted Petal It Forward, a “pay it forward” initiative spreading awareness of the health benefits of giving and receiving flowers.
8. Flowers are teachers and entertainers. Flowers and plants are nature’s teachers; their work and care impart important life skills, such as responsibility, time management, creative thinking, communication, self-awareness and resiliency. Beyond their silent teaching abilities, flowers are excellent entertainers. Tending a garden or designing arrangements, for example, are fun, free time activities that are suitable for people of all ages.
9. Flowers forge deeper connections with ourselves. Flowers are vessels of self-care. They lower stress, boost creativity and productivity, and evoke happy thoughts. In doing so, flowers are a valuable ingredient for improving self-awareness. To incorporate flowers in a self-care routine, purchase an arrangement for a living area or workspace, take breaks during the week to design a bouquet or promote relaxation using floral scents (like those from roses or lavender). Remember, no one needs a reason to ask if they deserve flowers today—the answer will always be YES!
10. Flowers connect humanity with nature. In our chaotic world, flowers are nature’s way of reminding us to stop and smell the roses—literally. Humanity has always had an affinity for connecting with nature, and for good reason. Interacting with natural elements has a positive effect on emotional and physical health. Better yet, this kind of relationship is mutually beneficial; as important as nature is for one’s health, a person’s interactions with the natural world are just as indispensable for protecting it.