If you’re ever feeling less productive in your office environment, try spicing up the air particles with aromatherapy. Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils from plants to improve a person’s mood and psychological well-being. Because smell is the strongest of your five senses, it could help boost your brain activity and increase productivity if used correctly.
To test this idea, Japanese researchers measured the effects of a “pleasant, floral green” aroma on subjects while performing a mental arithmetic task. They found that the amount of stress was reduced when compared to a control group. This research, along with hundreds of other studies, has led to a growing number of Japanese workplaces using different scents to relax the workers in hopes of decreasing stress and increasing productivity.
So why not try it at your office? For the benefit of your entire team, try using essential oils during a working session that requires staying focused. The resulting effects may surprise you. Here are five scents that we recommend to boost your productivity and mood within the office.
1. Peppermint. It’s not just a plant that’s commonly used in toothpaste and chewing gum to freshen your breath. Peppermint can also help clear your mind. The scent is known for boosting attentiveness. In a brainstorming session, use peppermint oil to invigorate the mind and soon your team could have all the right ideas.
2. Citrus. A study in Japan found that typos were reduced by more than 50% in the presence of a lemon scent. Lemon increases focus and has antiviral and antibacterial properties that can fight colds and boost the body’s immune system. But lemons aren’t the only citrus fruit that offers benefits. Grapefruits can help fight mental fatigue, and oranges can ease anxiety.
3. Cinnamon. If you work in an office environment, you have probably experienced the “2:30 crash.” The biggest reason for this is an unbalanced lunch, high in carbohydrates and low in fiber. To combat it, eat healthier and introduce the aroma of cinnamon, which is known to help fight mental fatigue and reduce the feeling that makes you want to curl up and hibernate for the next six hours.
4. Jasmine. Used for thousands of years in Asia, jasmine not only makes a great green tea that helps increase metabolism, but also dispenses a subtly sweet and highly fragrant aroma. In addition to all that, it can be used to calm nerves and create feelings of confidence.
5. Chamomile. This is actually a scent you should use at home during the evening. Chamomile is a daisy-like plant that is used to make herb infusions to help people relax. There is evidence that chamomile possesses anti-anxiety properties and can be used to treat stress and insomnia. When you’re having a stressful night, use chamomile oils so you can destress and fall asleep sooner. After all, the main ingredient for enhancing productivity comes from having a good night’s rest. So take the kind gesture of giving your team a chamomile gift bag to take home!