If we accept the truth that misery loves company, we must accept that happiness, contentment, and fun also love company.
What’s being acknowledged here is emotional contagion. We can bring out the worst in people, or be a bright shining beacon. We pick up the vibe of other people; Most of us have the direct experience of feeling stressed around a stressed person, and it’s likely we’ve felt a calming presence from someone else.
How does that happen? How do I end up feeling worried because of your worried energy (assuming I’m not affected by the same thing)? Principally, this happens due to the mirror neuron system in the brain, which facilitates the transference of emotional states between people.
Since I’m being fun and playful all month, it’s likely you’ll have got into that kind of vibe at some point. As we come to realise yoga can go deeper than the formal 75 minutes on the mat each week, we can reflect on the people we spend time with regularly, and if they have a fun kind of energy.
Many of us want to be happy, we get stuck in the pursuit of happiness, always finding it slightly outside of our grasp. Wanting to be happy is similar to wanting to be shorter, it’s just not going to happen. Having fun produces happiness, we’re so focused on the activity causing the fun, happiness bubbles up. Happiness is a spontaneous feeling that can’t be controlled or artificially created.
In yoga this month we’ve chosen to have fun and to be fun (that its acceptable to be playful) and in so doing, you’re increasing your happiness and those around you. So well done, and thank you. See you tonight for more fun and games.