How Plants Can Improve Your Mood
Most of us know I’ve been going a little nuts on the plant department.
I shared the story over on Instagram a few months ago about my own personal journey with plants; from being a complete hazard to them, even managing to kill cactuses (skills, I know) to now having about eighty plants.
But they are so much more than good looks…
At first I bought these plants simply as decorating pieces, to warm up my new (and slight empty) home.
Then I started to notice how my mood started changing. I started to slow down. Felt more present.
The past couple of years, with the divorce and what I had been through in my marriage, had made me a little bit of a scatterbrain and I couldn’t really recognize myself.
I’ve always been really good with sitting still and being in the moment but after the trauma, my anxiety made all of it hard for me. I was either reliving the past or overwhelmed and freaked out about what was going to happen in the future. Constantly worrying about the uncontrollable and never really in the moment.
When I first started adding plants to my home, I noticed how relaxed it made me to take care of them.
I started a routine of walking among them in the morning, lightly touching their leafs and texture with my fingers. Touching the soil. Paying attention to them and what they need. Noticing how they react to different conditions.
I started recognizing myself in them. How the wrong conditions could make them almost die, and how simple changes could make them thrive.
It fascinated me so I decided to dig a little deeper...
Turns out there’s been studies about how plants help mental health by reducing stress, anxiety, improve mood and self esteem and enhance calm feelings. Plants have also shown signs of easing feelings of depression and just generally improve well being and state of mind.
1. Reduce Stress
2. Lower Levels Of Anxiety
3. Lower Blood Pressure
4. Improve Concentration and Focus
5. Increase Attentiveness
6. Enhance Productivity and Creativity
7. Improve Well Being
8. Improve the air quality which helps with “brain quality” (I might have made that word up) and help you sleep better.
Caring for a living thing gives us a purpose and it’s so rewarding when we see how our attentiveness and care result in them blooming and thriving.
Just Some of my favorites…
- NASA did a study that showed one single snake plant in a chamber with toxic gases, reduced the levels by 53%, showing that snake plants are killers at purifying our not so toxic, but still not that great, air. Great air also means better sleep and a clearer mind. Snake plant can also reduce anxiety, respiratory problems and headache symptoms.
- The scent from lavender lowers stress and anxiety levels. It can also improve your sleep and lower heart rate.
- Another great one for purifying the air, equalling a good night’s sleep.
Golden Pothos or Devil’s Ivy
- Even though the best thing about this plant is its ability to reduce stress and improve air quality. It is also one of my absolute favorites because of how low maintenance it is, how beautifully it drapes (I have it hanging, framing my windows and doorways,) but I also have had great success with cuttings, resulting in many new babies, and ultimately, new plants.