When we think of the word “contagious,” we may think of negative things such as the Flu, common colds, or other viruses and bugs that could possibly harm us. Studies have shown, however, that there are incidences where contagiousness is not necessarily a bad thing. Through research conducted by Harvard University and the University of California, San Diego, they found that happiness can be spread through social networks. Specifically, they found that if an individual is happy, their friend’s happiness could increase by 25%. Furthermore, they found that this happiness can be spread to friends of friends as well, making a more positive social network. When reading this study, I particularly gathered two big meanings from it. The first one is to surround yourself with happiness. If happiness is contagious, make sure to be around those that bring your mood up instead of inversely bring it down. Reflect on family and friends that you interact with that make you happy and appreciate the time you have with them that contributes to your overall mood. The second one is that you have the ability to brighten someone’s day. Contagiousness can go both ways, meaning that you too can boost someone’s mood. Allow yourself to recognize the emotions of your friends and family, and continue to give them support and kindness so that happiness can be spread throughout.

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