Science says happiness is contagious - are you infected?
December 6, 2008 1:54pm CST
http://www.latimes.com/features/health/la-sci-happy5-2008dec05,0,5449915.story In a study that was released yesterday, researchers from Harvard and UC Sand Diego revealed something that happy people have known for a long time - happiness is contagious. When you're around happy people, you have a greater chance of being happy. The scientists studied information collected from thousands of people over the course of years. What do you think? Are there people that make you feel happier, just by being around them? Is there such a thing as a "happy community"? If they scientifically proved that your happiness is affected by being in a geographic area where there is more happiness, would you consider a "happiness factor" when deciding where to live?
• Sao Paulo, Brazil
6 Dec 08
Hello, chameleonsdream. I do believe that happiness is contagious. When you see somebody smiling, really happy, or something like that, you will immediately cheer yourself up. The other way is also true. If you see somebody down and all sad, you will not be as happy as before. It doesn't mean you will sit down and cry with that person. It doesn't mean that, if you see somebody happy, you will start laughing. It just means that it might affect your mood. I don't think that I would change my country just to find somewhere where all people are happy. After all, I can be happy even if I am not looking to happy people. Happiness starts with somebody, and I'm sure that I can be this somebody. And I do believe in a happy community. Though it must be pretty hard to form one. There is no way to kick off the people who get easily angry. Respectfully, Munhozmib.
• United States
6 Dec 08
munhozmib, I think the most important part of what you said is this: Happiness starts with somebody, and I'm sure that I can be this somebody. What a wonderful attitude to have! I feel the same way. I remember a song from my childhood - one that we used to sing in church, which had a profound effect on me and I think shaped my entire life. It's called "Let There Be Peace on Earth". The first lines are Let there be peace on Earth and let it begin with me. The people who know you are lucky to know you. And for the record? The scientists also say that sadness is much less contagious than happiness. So... we need more happy people in the world!
• Sao Paulo, Brazil
7 Dec 08
Hello! Thank you! I don't think they are lucky, though. They would, if I was always happy. But it is pretty hard to smile all the time, isn't it? Sadness is less contagious? Then we are on our way to victory! Come on, let's show the world some happiness! Respectfully, Munhozmib.