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Why the Smells of Flowers Affect Us More Than We Think

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By Pat Miller, florist on BloomNation and Owner of A Bed of Roses Florist in San Francisco, CA

It turns out there's a reason why you love decorating your home and office with fresh flowers -- biophilia. According to prominent German psychologist Eric Fromm, biophilia is "the passionate love of life and of all that is alive." This natural tendency makes the exposure to plants and flowers on a regular basis more necessary than most would think. Unfortunately, our cemented-over way of daily living disconnects us from the natural world, both physically and emotionally.

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Recent studies at Harvard and Rutgers show that exposure to flowers first thing in the morning can be powerful enough to help counteract stress, depression, fear and anger. In a nutshell: A floral pick-me-up could transform your morning "blahs" into a positive mood and can set the tone for a better day.

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Studies also show there is wisdom in aromatherapy. Below are just a few examples, according to the Mood Mappers at International Flavors & Fragrances:

• Lavender and pine can help promote relaxation and sleep
• Jasmine can help ease depression
• Cinnamon can help sharpen the mind
• Citrus can help give alertness and an energy boost
• Peppermint can help motivate
• Chamomile works for performance jitters
• Bergamot and rosemary can help decrease psychological stress
• Smelling coffee may be enough of a jolt without taking a sip

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I would adore bouquets in every home, not just because I am a florist, but because of the proven benefits flowers bring.