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We've all been there.

You're in a new job, doing your thing, when the hottie from finance walks by and leaves you a red-faced, spluttering mess. 

Workplace crushes are completely natural, and what's more, they could even be good for your health and well-being. 

Well, that's according to Jason Hughes, Founder of Leicester Centre for Psychodynamic anyway.

Speaking to Stylist, Jason explained how the butterfly feeling could actually help us feel better about ourselves. 

“We all want to feel good, crushes are our imaginative and creative way of identifying those things we prize in others, which we struggle to see in ourselves.”

He continued, “Crushes help us to feel alive, help us to feel, and help us to imagine – this is especially important when we might feel that we are trapped in a routine, stuck in a job or relationship where there is little new and vibrant.''

“Don’t ignore them, but pay careful attention to them and what they might be saying about you…”

And if you think your crushing days are behind you, think again. Those lustful feelings can reveal themselves when you least expect it, even in adulthood.

See, crushes stem from the same part of the brain believed to be responsible for drug addiction.

Imagine how many workplace romances we're missing out on while we work from home. It's quite tragic really…

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Seeing loved up couples in movies and real life can make you feel pretty miserable about your single status, but fear not, because science has some good news for you.

Apparently, unmarried women are actually happier than those who are married. The Guardian stated that unmarried and childless women are the happiest subgroup ever.

This is according to behavioural science professor Paul Dolan.

He even claimed that unmarried women will live longer than their married peers.

The happiness expert said, “We do have some good longitudinal data following the same people over time, but I am going to do a massive disservice to that science and just say: if you’re a man, you should probably get married; if you’re a woman, don’t bother.”

He explained that marriage helped men calm down, however, women didn’t benefit as much. Marred men take fewer risks and even live longer.

“She, on the other hand, has to put up with that, and dies sooner than if she never married. The healthiest and happiest population subgroup are women who never married or had children,” he added.

So, if you’re feeling a bit down in the dumps about your bare engagement finger then cheer up because it turns out being unmarried is actually way better than we expected.

However, if Ryan Gosling was to turn up and pop the question, we’d have to take one for the team and say yes.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Sorry, science.

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Science has upped it's game.

Most researchers seem to be pretty busy with conducting medical studies and making valuable scientific discoveries for society's gain, but this latest survey really takes it to the next level.

Bloom & Wild have worked with London Metropolitan University to undergo an experiment to figure out when the 'love hormone', AKA oxytocin, is released.

The anti-anxiety and stress reducing hormone is pretty special, the chemicals are made when you're in love, and having some KICK-ASS sex. We heart it. 

The study measured how the brain reacts to receiving certain gifts, and it's led to some pretty interesting, and useful, results. We're not hugely surprised at what topped the list, they're all unreal.

Research also suggests that people in the first three stages of love reported higher oxytocin levels that last for roughly six months to a year. At a chemical level, can presents recreate this high of lovestruck heartbeats?

Scientists reported that the subjects of the study showed an average increase of 73pg/ml in the hormone oxytocin after getting chocolates, and 62pg/ml after receiving flowers. Feeling loved comes in all shapes and sizes, it would seem.

The official top five items or experiences included on the list which trumped having sex were; chocolate winning the number one spot, then flowers, food, shopping and booking a holiday.

Receiving chocolate apparently creates a high increase in oxytocin the same rise in oxytocin comes from sex, so a quick nip down to Butlers could solve your stress issues. 

Flowers can spark the same feeling as love, relationships and sexy times, and a study by Havas Worldwide revealed that 57 percent of millennials think that food is better than sex. Damn.

hungry jennifer lawrence GIF

Retail therapy also made the list, according to the experiment. The neurologist David Linden, in his book The Compass Of Pleasure, explains that the experience of shopping triggers dopamine circuitry in the brain's mesolimbic pathway.

In plain-old-English, the mesolimbic pathway is a key part of how we experience entertainment and happiness, so having a sneaky online shop at ASOS is good for you. Thank God we have a valid excuse to do this now…

Booking a holiday is better than having some intimate. alone time with a partner, according to research. 16% of Brits claim to support this, so those Aer Lingus January sales must have had people feelin' pretty damn euphoric.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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To carry out their research, Bloom & Wild and London Metropolitan University split 30 volunteers into three groups.

Each were to receive a gift of flowers, chocolate, or water, and took saliva samples before the gift arrived, and then again 10 minutes after delivery, and finally 40 minutes after receiving the gift. 

It just goes to show, chocolate should always be cherished. We're in a loving relationship with Cadbury's Dairy Milk, and there are zero signs of a break-up coming our way.

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Tossing and turning every night? Us too.

The struggle to fall asleep has been haunting us lately and there isn’t enough coffee in the world to mend our sleepy heads in the morning.

All we want is a good night’s sleep. Is that too much to ask for?

If, like us, you have trouble falling asleep at night then fear not, because scientists have discovered quite the simple solution.

And it won’t cost you a penny!

One of the main things that keeps us up at night is our worried minds. We are constantly fretting about everything and anything, whether it’s an argument with our other half or fears of not being able to pay this month’s phone bill.

There’s always something on our mind that stops us from snoozing peacefully.

But there’s something you can do to ease this problem- write your thoughts down.

Healthy Ireland recommends penning your fears and worries on a piece of paper before your head hits the pillow.

It is simple but effective. Many people even use writing as a form of therapy.

Women struggle to sleep more than men (no surprise there) so why not keep a notebook or even a scrap of paper and a pen by your bed?

Then if your mind is abuzz with anxious thoughts, all you need to do is scribble them down and try to get them out of your system.

Have you tried this method before? Did it work for you?

We cannot wait to give it a go and look forward to catching some well-needed z’s.

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The countdown to Christmas is officially underway and we’re feeling way too excited about it. We’ve been itching to watch our favourite festive films since the summertime and will happily tune into Love Actually, The Holiday, Home Alone and Elf every single evening.

Christmas movies never fail to make us smile so we’ll be watching as many as possible this winter.

Movies like The Grinch and Miracle on 34th Street always make us feel better and science has even found evidence to prove that watching Christmas movies is actually good for you.

Researchers have found that Christmas movies release feel-good hormones. They told DoYouRemember, “It does create that neurological shift that can produce happiness. I think anything that takes us out of our normal habituation, the normal day in, day out ,signals our senses, and then our senses measure if it’s pleasing or not. Christmas decorating will spike dopamine, a feel-good hormones.”

Christmas movies can also help lower stress and reduce anxiety levels, which is ideal as we approach one of the most hectic times of the year.

Watch Hugh Grant shimmy around 10 Downing Street or cry over It’s a Wonderful Life with your nearest and dearest this winter. After all, science says it’s good for your health.

If anyone needs us we’ll be watching The Muppet Christmas Carol for the foreseeable future.

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Being moody is totally normal and now it looks like it is actually good for us!

A new study has found that those who swing on the pendulum of emotional intensity may be showing signs of a natural ability to adapt to change. 

The University College London has created a theory that moodiness helps to reinforce our responses to various environmental factors.

If an experience makes us happy, we are going to seek more of it. And in contrast, if an experience is unpleasant, it will likely bring us down. 

Being able to flip a switch when it comes to your reactions is beneficial in terms of survival, in both your social and work life. 

"The ubiquity of moods and the extent of their impact on our lives tells us that, throughout the course of evolution, our moodiness must have conferred a significant competitive advantage," said lead expert Dr Eran Eldar.

Now, the study did admit that being moody all the time can lead to depression, but Dr Eldar added that “being moody at times may be a small price to pay for the ability to adapt quickly when facing momentous environmental changes.”

Feel free to sulk about missing your bus or fume for a few minutes when your sister steals your favourite dress.

Science says it’s okay!

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We've all been there.

As a young, free singleton you promised yourself you'd never use pet names for your future partner – after all, no one wants to be that couple.  

Just hearing your friends refer to their other halves as "babe", "sweetheart" or "honey" was cringey enough to make you swear off romance for the rest of your life, but then all of a sudden, life throws you a curveball and you end up with a "babe" all of your own. 

Slowly but surely the inside jokes and doting nicknames will creep their way into the relationship, and bam – you're just like every loved-up couple you've ever rolled your eyes at. 

So, why does romance turn us all into mushy, baby-talking, doe-eyed softies? 

Well, according to science, it likely stems from our parents.  

“Baby talk is used really extensively, including cross-culturally, by mothers around the world,” Florida State University neuroanthropologist Professor Dean Falk told Broadly.

“It exists for language acquisition in infants, and it also expresses love and facilitates bonding between the mother and the infant."

She believes that couples use pet names for each other because it brings them back to their childhood memories and first love – their mum. 

And while this all might sound a bit Freudian, it's actually one of the most natural ways to bond with a partner. 

So, if you've got a "baby", "chicken" or even a "darling" in your life, chances are you're onto a winner. 

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Sometimes all you want to do is binge-watch Stranger Things and eat pizza with your beau. We can often feel guilty for not doing enough, but it turns out that being boring is really good for your relationship.

According to author Mark Manson relationships should “be as boring as possible.”

He told Business Insider, “That sounds really weird to people but if you think about it, a really happy 80-year-old couple that’s been together for 60 years, the reason that they’ve been together for 60 years, it isn’t because they took all these private jets and they had these crazy vacations and “Oh my God, look at their pictures.”

“It’s because they were able to be boring together.”

Apparently, the happiest couples aren’t the ones who jet off to New Zealand or South Africa at the drop of a hat.

The happiest couples are the ones who enjoy simple, quiet lifestyles. 

Mark explained: “A lot of people…don’t want to be a boring person, like we really want to be interesting people and have interesting lives but the problem is that, that conflicts with what makes a relationship good in a lot of cases.”

Fascinating! 

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So, it turns out taking regular power naps can actually make us happier. 

In a recent study conducted by the University of Hertfordshire, researchers asked over 1,000 participants to rate their happiness levels and note whether or not they napped throughout the day.

The subjects were then divided into three groups – non-nappers, short nappers and long nappers.

Results found that approximately 67 percent of short nappers claimed to feel happy, while just 56 percent of long napper and 60 percent of non-nappers said the same. 

According to Red Online, Richard Wiseman, Psychologist Professor at the university said:

"Previous research has shown that naps of under 30 minutes make you more focused, productive and creative, and these new findings suggest the tantalising possibility that you can also become happier by just taking a short nap."

"Similarly longer napping is associated with several health risks and again, this is in line with our results."

Short 'power' naps actually come with a whole host of health benefits. 

A separate study carried out by NASA found that 26-minute naps could boost alertness by up to 54 percent. 

We won't argue with those statistics. 

Professor Wiseman also stressed the need for workplaces to provide quiet napping areas for their employees.

"A large body of research shows that short naps boost performance. Many highly successful companies, such as Ben & Jerry's and Google, have installed dedicated nap spaces, and employees need to wake up to the upside of napping at work."

Now, there's an idea we can definitely get behind. 

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We all know a person in our lives that goes from happy and carefree to breathing fire and rage when they are hungry.

If you don’t know that person, then FYI, it is probably you.

So whether or not you are the person people avoid when you go into Incredible hungry hulk mode, there is a scientific explanation behind it.

The word “hanger” has been thrown around and slapped as a label to those who throw tantrums that could rival toddlers and, given to those whose irritability grows with every tummy rumble.

So much so, that it was added to the dictionary as an official word last year.

However, rejoice hangry individuals! Our jokes have been in vain as evidence suggests that there is a genuine connection between hunger and anger.  

 

A Lecturer in Nutrition and Dietetics at King’s College London, Sophie Medlin, explained their findings surrounding hanger.

“We’ve long recognised that hunger leads to irritability in science,” she said during a Women’s Hour interview on BBC Radio 4.

“But the wonderful world of social media has merged the two words for us and now we know it as ‘hanger’. When our blood sugars drop, cortisol and adrenaline rise up in our bodies – our fight or flight hormones.”

These hormones are responsible for triggering a release of small, protein-like molecules called neuropeptides, which impacts the way the brain works.

“The ones that trigger for hunger are the same ones that trigger for anger and rage and impulsive type behaviours,” Medlin says. “So that’s why you get that sort of same response.”

The research found that hunger causes an increase in neuropeptide Y, which is interconnected to feelings of aggression.

It offers the explanation to why ‘hanger’ can affect your emotions when it comes to your nearest and dearest, who have to endure the outburst.

A study from 2014 found that low glucose levels relates to greater aggression in married couples. 

Which led to scientists to advise couples to resolve challenging issues on a full stomach, rather than an empty one.

Additionally, another study found that 62% of people make the wrong decisions when they’re ‘hangry’.

So, how do combat this hanger and keep it under control?

“It depends on how long it’s going to be until your next meal,” says Medlin. “Ideally you want something that’s going to bring your blood sugars up a little bit and also maintain them there. So a sort of savoury carbohydrate type snack would be the best thing to have.”

We will let you decide if you should be more empathetic towards those who are hangry, or you could remind them they’re probably making the wrong decision.

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So, if you've ever attended a wedding, dinner party, or any fancy event where alcohol is on offer, you'll know a glass or two of prosecco can make you very tipsy, very quickly. 

You think, 'ah yeah go on, sure one glass won't hurt', and before you know it you're sitting in a bathroom stall trying to compose yourself before anyone notices how tipsy you are. 

We've always put it down to the fact that we're just lightweights doomed to make fools of ourselves in social situations, but now it seems there's actually a scientific reasoning behind the phenomenon. 

According to reports, fizzy alcoholic drinks like prosecco and champagne DO actually get us drunk faster. 

Apparently the bubbles help move the alcohol into our bloodstreams much more rapidly than other alcohols. 

See, when our stomachs are full of fizz, the prosecco is forced to push through at a much quicker pace, meaning it'll go to you head before you know it. 

I don't know about you, but I feel as though a weight has been lifted off my shoulders – it all makes so much sense. 

So, next time you find yourself feeling a little merry after a glass of bubbly, raise you glass and toast to the wonderful world of science. 

 

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Do you know what your first memory is?

I know mine was on my parents wedding day – I'm being lifted off a white bench outside by someone  and I can see my little white sandals on my feet as I look down at them. That's it. A three-second lightning-quick snapshot. I was a few weeks away from my second birthday.

I can still see my shoes as I get picked up off the bench – but did it ever actually happen?

A study in the journal Psychological Science says that more than likely it's a fabrication. Spooky, right? 

Researchers from the UK asked more than 6,600 people about their first childhood memory.

According to Science Alert, they found that 2,500 of participants – almost 40 percent – said that they had formed memories before the age of two-years-old. More than 890 of those people said that their their first memory takes place before they turned one.

The scientists now say though that those memories are completely imagined…they're not real memories.

So why are we convinced that they are? 

The study explained that our brains seem to be simply incapable of retaining information from before the age of three.

However, the thing is, the scientists found that people's memories were age-appropriate. 

This means that they're not memories that got muddled in time because they mention prams, cribs or wanting to communicate before knowing how to talk.

Now this is the interesting bit.

The research suggests that these recollections are actually being pieced together from photographs people have seen and stories they may have been told etc. 

"We suggest that what a rememberer has in mind when recalling fictional improbably early memories is an episodic-memory-like mental representation consisting of remembered fragments of early experience and some facts or knowledge about their own infancy/childhood," explained psychologist Shazia Akhtar. 

So do you think that you've created events in your mind that never took place?

We all know that memory isn't the most reliable of things and this study certainly gives weight to that.

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