Monday, December 8, 2008

New Study on Contagious Happiness

Yes, they just released the results of a new study! And I am writing about it especially as it connects to social media and being part of various social networks :-)
You can find the complete study here!

Some excerpts:

New research from Harvard Medical School and the University of California, San Diego suggests that happiness is influenced not only by the people you know, but by the people they know.The study showed that happiness spreads through social networks, sort of like a virus, meaning that your happiness could influence the happiness of someone you've never even met. Sadness spreads too, but much less efficiently, says study co-author James H. Fowler, PhD, of the University of California-San Diego.

"We have known for a long time that there is a direct relationship between one person's happiness and another's," Fowler tells WebMD."But this study shows that indirect relationships also affect happiness. We found a statistical relationship not just between your happiness and your friends' happiness, but between your happiness and your friends' friends' friends' happiness."

Happy Friends Make You Happy

They concluded that the happiness of an immediate social contact increased an individual's chances of becoming happy by 15%, Fowler says. The happiness of a second-degree contact, such as the spouse of a friend, increases the likeliness of becoming happy by 10%, and the happiness of a third-degree contact -- or the friend of a friend of a friend -- increases the likelihood of becoming happy by 6%. Having more friends also increased happiness, but having friends who were happy was a much bigger influence on happiness.

Fowler says the findings do not mean you should avoid unhappy people, but that you should make an effort whenever you can to spread happiness."We need to think of happiness as a collective phenomenon," he says. "If I come home in a bad mood, I may be missing an opportunity to make not just my wife and son happy, but their friends."

--------------------------

could say "told u!" :-) :-) :-) so keep happymaking and have a nice week!


No comments: