Ever been coasting along in life and all of sudden you get a call from a friend who is in crisis mode? You jump in as the supportive friends, try to listen, advise, relate to them, counsel them and motivate them to stay positive. After the conversation you feel drained and maybe start to question some things in your own life that you weren’t questioning before. Why do we do that? When a friend goes through a break-up because her man was lying and cheating do you find yourself beginning to analyze the status of your own relationship? When a person is completely unhappy with where they live or their job do you start analyze your own career and where you are in life?
In psychology there is something called the contagion effect. This effect has to do more with aggressive behavior. The contagion effect states that when individuals grow up in an abusive environment or a bad neighborhood or are surrounded by delinquent peers they are more likely to be aggressive themselves. Basically, violence begets violence. So if this is possible over-time for aggression isn’t it possible that other emotions can be contagious as well?
This is why it is so important to surround yourself around positive people and focus on the good in your life and the good in others. When a friend is going through a bad break-up it is okay to let them vent about all the negative feelings but don’t leave it on that note. You want to encourage your friend to focus on the present moment of healing and look forward to future, not wallow in the past. Misery really does love company and it seems the more you talk about negative things in life the more negative you will begin to experience. So shut the door on that nonsense as soon as possible. Count your blessings!
When you find yourself starting to get sucked in to another persons negative talk you have to be conscious of it. If you start thinking about all the negative aspects of your job, your relationship or any other part of your life then its easy to join them in the downward spiral because we all know that no job or relationship is perfect. However, if you are conscious of the negative thoughts and instead choose to focus on all the positives you have your job or relationship you are much less likely to join them in the pity party. Instead your goal should be to inspire them to do the same. Sometimes when a person is going through a rough time they just want to feel it in that moment and not be pushed to be positive or happy but that doesn’t mean you have to join them in that moment. There is a difference between being a supportive friend and being an enabler. Don’t join them in the fire, show them ways to get out. It is up to them to pull up their big girl panties and take the advice or follow your example and motivate to get out of the negativity and get back on track.
Emotions can be contagious and it is important to choose your friends wisely. It is also important to be very self aware of how the world around you is effecting your well-being, emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. When having conversations with friends or family be sure to remain very conscious because some people can be very toxic and emotionally draining. The more you maintain a positive state of mind the less likely you are to encounter those that are negative. What you think about most is what you will experience most. Basically, like attracts like. Be a person whose light and warmth attracts others with light and warmth and all of us positive super stars can shine together!
With love, happiness, health and positive thoughts,
2 thoughts on “Contagious Emotions”
I learned something… Did know about the contagion effect. Well said.
Thank you! Always love getting feedback.
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