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We all have our own tricks to boost our mood when we’re feeling down; these little tricks can make you feel a little bit happier every day. While there are certainly happy memories tied up in the wedding ring you and your spouse purchased together years ago or your teddy bear from childhood, new research finds that we typically feel calmer and experience a greater sense of well-being when we focus on a place that reminds us of happier times rather than a thing, even if it holds sentimental value.

我们都有自己的小妙招让自己心情低落的时候振作起来,这些小妙招能让你每天都增添一点幸福感。多年前你和爱人一起买下的结婚戒指、童年的泰迪熊,这些东西都与幸福的记忆相关。不过新研究发现与某件物品相比——即使是具有重要意义的物品——当我们集中精神回忆某个与美好时光相关的地方时,我们尤其会感到平静,幸福感也更加强烈。



The report, called Places That Make Us, was commissioned the United Kingdom’s National Trust (NT) and conducted by Surrey University’s researchers. Experts performed functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans on 20 volunteers and conducted an online survey of 2,000 people to better understand this deep draw toward special places. The results were groundbreaking, as they revealed such places don’t just make us feel happy, but create a sense of calm and completeness.

这份报告名为“那些让我们更加完整的地方”是由英国国民信托基金委任、英国萨里大学的专家们推出的。专家们对20位志愿者进行了机能性磁共振成像检查,同时对2000位志愿者进行了网上调查,以求更好地了解特殊地域对人们具有强烈吸引力的原因。他们取得了突破性的研究成果,发现这些特殊的地方不仅会使我们心情愉悦,还能产生一种平静感和完整感。



“Working with leading researchers and academics, and using cutting-edge fMRI brain technology, we examined how places affect people, how they become special, and why we feel a pull towards them,” explained Nino Strachey, head of research for the NT.

“与领先的研究团队和学者一道,运用先进的机能性磁共振成像检查技术,我们就特殊地方对人们的影响力、它们为何特殊,以及为何对我们具有强烈的吸引力等问题进行了研究,”英国国民信托基金负责人Nino Strachey说道。



The 20 volunteers were shown images of landscapes, houses, and other locations, as well as personally meaningful objects. Measuring their brain activity, the researchers found that it was the places, as opposed to the objects, that caused the brain to get the most excited. The part of the brain linked with emotional responses, the amygdala, was specifically roused.

研究人员给20位志愿者观看了风景、房屋和其他地方的图片,还给他们观看了具有重要私人意义的东西的图片。通过检测他们的大脑活动,研究人员发现特定的地方,而不是物品,能让大脑产生最为兴奋的状态。尤其是人脑中与情感反应相联系的部分——杏仁核——反应非常强烈。



Volunteers were also interviewed at great length two times, once at home and the other time at their special place. According to the research, the favorite places evoked feelings of belonging, physical and emotional safety, and an intense internal pull to the place.

研究人员同时还对志愿者进行了两次长时间的采访,一次是在家里,另一次是在对他们有特殊意义的地方。研究发现,那些人们最爱的地方能唤醒一种内心的归属感,让人感到身体和情感上的安全感,同时还感到自己强烈地被这些地方吸引。



According to the report, 86 percent agreed “this place is part of me,” 60 percent felt “I feel safe here,” and 79 percent said they were “drawn here by a magnetic pull.”

据研究报道称,86%的人赞同“这个地方已经成为我的一部分”,60%的人感到“我在这里很安全”,79%的人称“我被一种强磁场吸引到了这里”。



Dr. Andy Myers, consultant on the research, weighed in on the findings, saying, “For the first time we have been able to prove the physical and emotional benefits of place, far beyond any research that has been done before. With meaningful places generating a significant response in areas of the brain known to process emotion, it’s exciting to understand how deep-rooted this connection truly is.”

该研究的顾问Andy Myers博士这样评论这项研究的意义:“这是我们第一次了解到了地域对人身体和情感的有益影响,其意义远超之前的任何研究。我们了解到了具有特殊意义的地方会让大脑中处理情感的部分产生强烈的反应,这种联系如此深刻,真是一项令人惊喜的发现。”