Contagious Behavior

Surprise! This isn’t about how disease is spread from one person to another. This is about how what we do effects others.

I don’t think anyone would argue that panic is contagious. But experts agree that for panic to set in there has to be a distinct set of cirmcumstances associated with it.

The rest I guess is just mob mentality. To view this kind of thing live just turn on the TV and watch the anti-American craziness going on over an obscure film. I suppose looting is a symptom of this communal misbehavior.

And while the evidence doesn’t back it up, I’m pretty sure sneezing is catchy (and not just through the germs). Because anytime someone sneezes around me, I start to sneeze or maybe the velocity of their sneezes kicks up dust?

Scientists know that groups of females living/working together will eventually start to cycle together. And certainly there seems to be a rash of pregnancies all happening around me.

But what about smiling?

According to the TED program I watched smiling is contagious, but not in the way you’d think. We mimic a smile because we’re testing to see if it is real. A real smile releases endorphines equivalent to 10K chocolate bars. Yeah, I didn’t believe that either, but a smile can change your mood for the better and add years to your lifespan.

While I’m not willing to give up my chocolate, I do like to smile and now that it’s good for me, I’ll do it more often. And as a bonus, people will wonder what I’m up to:-)

About Linda Andrews

Linda Andrews lives with her husband and three children in Phoenix, Arizona. When she announced to her family that her paranormal romance was to be published, her sister pronounce: "What else would she write? She’s never been normal." All kidding aside, writing has become a surprising passion. So just how did a scientist start to write paranormal romances? What other option is there when you’re married to romantic man and live in a haunted house? If you’ve enjoyed her stories or want to share your own paranormal experience feel free to email the author at She’d love to hear from you.
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2 Responses to Contagious Behavior

  1. danrshaw says:

    So I can double my endorphines if someone gives me chocolate and I smile about it. What a good deal. If smiling isn’t your norm then you might cause a contagious behavior called anxiety in others who observe?

    While in the Navy I worked in a corrections facility for 4 years as a Corrections Counselor. I can totally back up the group cycle thing. Which means they are all PMSing at the same time. Just imagine 40-50 woman in a single dorm, not a fun environment.

  2. Ouch! And here I thought having 2 teenage daughters go at the same time I did was bad. Guess you tripled your PPE at certain times of the month.

    I’m still not buying the chocolate thing, but I think an experiment is in order. Do I feel happier just eating a piece of chocolate, or eating a piece of chocolate and smiling? It could take months to figure out:-)

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