Why millennials’ obsession with plants is in full bloom

From avocados, dachshunds and French bulldogs to green tea, selfies and social media – the unique obsessions of the millennial generation have been well-documented in recent years. Millennials have been even credited with the sudden increase in popularity of house plants. A possible explanation for this is that a large proportion of millennials rent rather than own their homes, which often means they are not allowed to redecorate or keep pets in the property. For those living in small urban properties, with little or no outside space, having plants in the home is one way of bringing the outside in.

This latest obsession with plant-raising has not only taken over millennial homes but also offices and creative spaces. Aside from sharing photos on social media of indoor plants and ‘green’ workspaces, there are proven benefits to having more plants around the office.

Here are six of them:

1.) Boosting productivity
Humans have an innate affinity towards nature. The visual effects of seeing plants on a regular basis can improve productivity, according to a study by the University of Exeter. It found that productivity rates increased by 15% when employees could see plants from their desks.

2.) Reducing sickness and absence rates
Research from the Agricultural University of Norway found that plants in the office created a 25% decrease in health absences at work, as symptoms of ill health decreased. Plants have such positive effects that one study conducted in a hospital described them as a “non-invasive, inexpensive and effective complimentary medicine for surgical patients.” This same theory can be applied to the work place implying that people are likely to feel better around plants.

3.) Cleaning the air
Indoor plants can improve air quality and remove significant quantities of air pollutants, making for a more pleasant environment, by replenishing dipping oxygen levels in the office.

4.) Reducing noise levels
Plants absorb sound which can help reduce distracting background noises such as office chatter.

5.) Boosting creativity
According to the Attention Restoration Theory looking at nature can change the processing modes of the brain enabling more creative work creation.

6.) Mental benefits
The process of looking after plants has a relaxing effect on people, and can even help ease depression. Just being able to see plants on a regular basis can increase a person’s mood. According to colour psychology, green has calming effects, represents tranquillity and can help relieve stress. It’s also claimed to be a colour that is restful, soothing and health giving.

Though a recent rise in popularity of indoor plants has been labelled a millennial ‘craze’, they can provide benefits for all, resulting in more productive and happier employees. The business world is a competitive place, and with millennials comprising more than half the global workforce, adding a bit of greenery to your office could ensure you’re doing all you can to attract and retain younger generations to your workplace.

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