Daniel Goleman, at a talk at the Garrison Institute in 2011, referenced a study in which two strangers come into a lab and fill out a measure of their mood- how they are feeling that day. Then they sat face to face with that perfect stranger making eye contact for 2 minutes not saying a word. They measured their mood again after the interaction.
They found that the person in the dyad with the dominant emotion, transferred their emotion to the other person!
If Person A came in feeling frustrated and Person B came in feeling neutral, then Person B would leave feeling more frustrated and negative then when they came in. Likewise if Person A was very happy and enthusiastic and Person B was slightly angry, Person B would leave feeling happier.
Psychologists attribute the experience to Mirror Neurons. A part of the fabric of our brain that enables us to empathize with one another and transfer our emotions.
Researchers got these results from 2 minutes. Thinking about the people nearest to you that you spend hours, days and years with.
I invite you to put this research into practice:
1. Take inventory of the people around you. How do the people in your life make you feel?
2. Self manage your emotions. How do you show up in the world and affect the people around you?
How do you feel today? What could you do to feel a little better? How would you serve the world around you by feeling better?
Thank you to Emiliya Zhivotovskaya, SOMO LEADER, coach and facilitator of flourishing. Check her out here.