SRA friends and family,
I hope this email finds you happy, healthy and fit. I learned this morning of a very interesting ”outbreak” of laughter back in 1962. It started in Jan and spread across parts of Africa causing the schools to close. That spring 14 schools were closed. (google Tanganyika Laughter Epidemic). I was reading one of my favorite blogs when I learned this. The author then went on to talk about the idea of networks and how networks spread things. In the current case, the connected world network is spreading a virus. Certainly that is a negative, and we are doing our best to stop it. But, networks are powerful, and they can spread positive things as well. In fact, networks amplify and spread pretty much anything in it. Fashion, trends, unhappiness, kindness, cruelty… That is a powerful thought and.. Could be a powerful tool. Especially at this time. The author then urged us all to be infectious with the following:
- Spread connection: 70% of your happiness comes from relationships with other people. We may not be able to reach out personally to others, but we have amazing tools at our disposal to reach out virtually. Connect and ReConnect
- Spread help: Give and receive help. Doing an act of kindness not only increases well being for the recipient, but also for the person doing the act. When people see help being given they are more likely to help as well.
- Spread gratitude: the more a person is inclined to gratitude the less likely to be depressed, anxious, lonely… Just sending a thankyou text is a great way to make 2 people happy. I have seen this first hand this week. I am so grateful for the occasional emails that come my way about SRA that I will often share the positive comments people make about the organization with our staff. That quick email that was sent turns into a mood lifter for the whole staff.
- Spread optimism: Optimism increases health, resilience and luck. The author warns how to decide between the right amount of optimism and taking things seriously by asking yourself “what is the cost of being wrong” If the cost of being wrong is low. Let yourself believe things will turn out good. Optimism increases the chances that you can spread a smile and a laugh… which is highly contagious.
The blog that I summarized here is lengthy but well worth the read.
As I read that post, I couldn’t help but recall one of my favorite TED talks of all time. Shawn Achor: The happy secret to better work. But what really got me thinking from this blog post was the idea of being intentional about what we spread through the network. Now more than ever. In our family of SRA and beyond. Let’s be a contagion of another kind.
Cat and SRA