Online,Social,Networks,Can,Mak health Online Social Networks Can Make You a Happier Healthier Pers
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The World HealthOrganization considers happiness to be an important component of health. Happy,optimistic people not only live 8 years longer on average, but they also arehealthier. Researchers have identified many of the factors that stimulatehappiness (or unhappiness); however until recently - none of thesestudies addressed another cause of human happiness How the happiness andfriendliness of one person influences anothers emotional state.That communicatedhappiness is a significant phenomenon, can be observed every day. For examplein a store, when you are greeted with a friendly smile, you are far moreinclined to smile back, and above all to make a purchase. The afterglow of suchan ephemeral encounter even has the potential to brighten your whole day. Even more fundamental,a study by the Harvard Medical School and the University of California, SanDiego, published in December in BMJ (BMJ 2008;337:a233) suggests that happinesscan spread from person to person within a social network and extends OUT up tothree degrees of separation (friends of a friends friend). People can"catch" positive emotional states they observe in others over timeframes ranging from seconds to weeks. Examination of social networksindicates that happy people tend to be connected to one another; and the morehappy friends you have, the greater your own chance for happiness. The study, following4739 persons over 20 years, concluded that the happiness displayed by someoneelse during a social contact actually increases by 15% the likelihood of feelinghappy oneself! This proves the adage that Happiness is contagious.Additionally,second-degree contact with a happy person (the friend of a friend) increasesthe likelihood of increased happiness by 10% and third-degree contact by 6%.There was no impact on fourth-degree contacts. Contrary to what onemight think, social interaction with an unhappy friend has little or no impacton ones own happiness. The researchers thenwent on to examine whether the same was true for online social networks.Following a sample of 1700 students active on Facebook, they found that despitethat the interactions took place virtually, our ancient evolutionary psychologyapparently does not make a distinction; online social networks seem to spreadhappiness the same way as do their offline counterparts. From theseobservations, its only a small step to suggest that networking with people whofeel passionately positive about any particular subject will be even morebeneficial than just networking in general. Thats because, by definition, suchindividuals will almost certainly better transmit their own happiness andenthusiasm to others. Taking antique or art object collecting as an example, byits very nature, its an extraverted, positive social experience. Collectorslove to share their passion and explain the stories behind their favoritecollectors items. Interestingly, one of the newest social networks online isatQuid, a community for antiques, art and vintage object enthusiasts. atQuid isone of the very few antique and collectors Websites, perhaps the only one, tocombine the informational aspects about all types of antiques, artobjects and vintage items, with networking and social exchange. The website is stillin its infancy but has the potential to become an important player in its area.atQuidoffers interactive features such as those on YouTube, and networking tools suchas those on LinkedIn, Plaxo or Facebook. It allows members to build meaningfulsocial exchange and to network, sharing their passion with fellow members. Thecontent is user generated and membership is free. Connectwith others out there, smile, be happy and make others happy too.