More exposed to contagious behaviors than we think it is convenient to know which are the most common.
The contagious behaviors are those gestures, habits or attitudes that we imitate or adapt due to the influence of the environment or the group. Not only happiness or stress is contagious, but also other behaviors, and the key lies in the emotions they transmit.
Science has investigated the ability of emotions to be transmitted from person to person. And in fact, negative emotions can lead to more contagious behaviors than positive ones. According to studies conducted by the Department of Psychology at the University of Monmouth (United States), we imitate other people’s behaviors and, sometimes without realizing it, we adopt their emotional states, especially among the closest ones (couple, children, co-workers …).
The bad mood is contagious
It is one of the contagious behaviors that most easily spread. It is one of the most common and is part of what in psychology is called emotional contagion, a process by which the emotions of one person are transferred to another. The bad mood has shown its ability to spread even in social networks. A study from the University of California at San Diego found that when the bad mood in the social network is expressed, it quickly spreads.
Rudeness is contagious
Rude behavior at work is especially contagious, as a study by the University of Florida has corroborated after analyzing the behavior of a group of workers for seven weeks. Interestingly, rudeness and bad education at work are one of the behaviors that most dissatisfaction produces among workers, as found in a study by the Swedish Council of Research for Health, Work and Welfare. Rudeness can negatively burden the entire work environment.
Applauding is contagious
Another common contagious behavior is to applaud when we attend a cultural show, for example. This has been investigated by mathematicians at the University of Uppsala, Sweden, in a study that reveals that the pressure to join the applause increases with the number of spectators, responding predictably to the volume of applause from the environment.
Taking risks is contagious
Taking risks is a contagious behavior as a result of letting others take risky decisions. A behavior that can hide certain insecurity and that leads to taking risks by imitating what others do.
Healthy habits are contagious
Healthy habits, such as eating well or exercising, are also contagious. And the same happens on the contrary. Thus, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that obesity is contagious. When a person gains weight, so do the possibility of fattening their partners, friends, brothers …
Yawning is contagious
It is one of the most contagious behaviors, yawning. And the key, according to science, lies in the brain, according to a study by the University of Nottingham that identified the brain area that is activated (primary motor cortex) and promotes involuntary yawning. It is not the only curious fact that science has found about the spread of yawning. A study published in the Royal Society Open Science indicated that the spread of yawning is higher among women because of their greater capacity for empathy.