Civilization is a stream with banks. The stream is sometimes filled with blood from people killing, stealing, shouting and doing the things historians usually record, while on the banks, unnoticed, people build homes, make love, raise children, sing songs, write poetry and even whittle statues. The story of civilization is the story of what happened on the banks. Historians are pessimists because they ignore the banks for the river. -- Will Durant
"Whenever I have fresh flowers in my house, I feel rich."
While enjoying a cup of coffee with a friend, he said this in a rather matter-of-fact way. It seemed like a simple enough statement, but it has stayed with me now for a couple weeks.
I just love the fact that a $7.99 bunch of flowers can make someone feel rich. I asked my friend a follow-up question,
"Rich like Warren Buffet or Bill Gates?"
He replied, "No, rich like my life is great."
We continued to discuss how remembering to pick up a bunch of flowers at the market, snipping a few blooms from your yard or grabbing a bouquet as you pass by a florist can have a great impact on your personal outlook, as well as, on your family, friends and coworkers.
A few years back researchers at Rutgers University showed in a study that fresh flowers make you feel happy. However, thinking about how flowers affect my friend, it is as if the flowers make him feel contented and wealthy in his soul. Not affluent in financial terms, but in his heart.
I am one of those people that often day dreams about winning the lottery, yet never buys a lottery ticket. I would be a fabulous philanthropist and do all sort of cool things. However, I know I don't buy lottery tickets so these ideas are generally just my lizard brain getting in the way of actual work.
I do keep flowers around the house, and lately I've been thinking about all the millions of people who buy Powerball and Lotto tickets with the dream of striking it rich. What if all these folks just bought flowers instead? Many articles and studies have also shown lottery winners aren't as happy as one would think.
My recommendation is for everyone to take their weekly Powerball or Lotto budget and buy flowers.
With flowers you get a guaranteed return, you can smell them and touch them and watch them bloom. Maybe not quite the adrenaline rush of needing one more "lucky horseshoe" to win twenty bucks on a scratch off ticket, but the fulfillment of experiencing flowers in your home or office is a much better bet in the long run.
Flowers are healthy, they don't make false promises and they deliver nourishment to your soul. For the price of a fancy coffee drink, they will watch over you all week and remind you that no matter what your bank account says, you are rich.