lexxx417: April 2012 Archives

I found psychology an interesting subject and I was really fascinated by lectures and readings about emotion. It is something that everyone experience every day, every minutes and yet I didn't really know the psychological concepts behind emotion and feelings until I actually read about it. I really wish we had more time in class to discuss more about human emotions with relation to psychological disorder. What interests me the most was the topic about attraction - love and hate and I will certainly remember what I learn. Sometimes I feel like the explanations about attraction are common sense that most people already know or can figure out by themselves such as mutual affection generated by similarity and proximity. However, I did learn something new and interesting, for example things like the most average face is the most attractive and the misconceptions about emotion. I think learning about human's emotion will be really helpful for me as I will be more understanding about people and their feelings. Additionally, as many actions are emotional driven, knowing about people's state of minds or emotions and the psychological explanations will be useful for dealing with many events or incidents in life. I will definitely apply what I have learned about emotion in psychology to real life.

Social contagion is a social psychology phenomenon which is described as the imitative behaviors of human being when the moods are spread from person to person. This social behavior is popular that there have been many sociological and psychological researches on the contagion of human's moods and behaviors.
During the first few decades of the 20th century, many sociologists began to create a sociograms that illustrate the maps of social network between people in the same cycle of friends or workplace. The Austrian sociologist Jacob Moreno discovered that the shape of
social connection vary by person. By examine the way talks and opinions flow in a particular environment, scientists noticed that social networks could affect people's thoughts and behaviors.
So, why does that happen? why do people start to think alike people around them?
One possible explanation lays in the evolution of human beings that mimicry is innate and it is closely related to evolutionary heritage. Organisms mimic the other types because of its adaptive advantages. Mimicry can help increasing the survival rates of a organism.
This explains why popularity is contagious.
Another possible explanation is the conformity of being the same as people around. Conformity introduces a secure feelings for individuals of a group and thus increase the chance of being similar in thoughts and behaviors.
"Buying, laughing, yawning and graffiti are all socially contagious. Now research says obesity is too. This has nothing to do with the power of suggestion or keeping up with the Joneses. To be influenced by others is genetically programmed in us and is an evolutionary hangover." - R. Alexander Bentley, Mark Earls and Michael J. O'Brien, I'll Have What She's Having: Mapping Social Behavior
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