Having difficulty getting your man to open up to you? Recent research indicates that giving him flowers may hold the key to increasing levels of social interaction and happiness.
We males are a notoriously reserved lot, preferring to skirt the issue of feelings and emotions altogether, often to the chagrin of our female counterparts. Which is why this recent research from Rutgers University is so interesting in its implications for getting men to open up and communicate.
Student researcher Holly Hale and psychology professor Jeannette Haviland-Jones conducted a study whereby one group of men were given a surprise gift of flowers and one other group were not. Clues such as verbal cues and body language were then scrutinised. Participants from the group who received the flowers showed increased eye-contact in conversation, increased physical proximity to researchers and also showed the Duchenne or "true" smile more frequently when compared with the unlucky group who were not surprised with flowers.
Previous studies had proven that flowers increased levels of happiness and social interaction amongst women; it wasn't clear however if these same results would apply to male subjects. It turns out that flowers do make us happier and more sociable, regardless of gender. "When it comes to receiving flowers, men and women are on the same playing field," reported professor Haviland-Jones.
So there we have it. Traditionally a gift from woman to man, nowadays it is of course perfectly acceptable to send flowers to a man, this goes without saying. Especially if you want to get him to open up to you!