We’ve all heard the adage that laughter is contagious and it turns out that it is true! When we hear someone else laughing, it can trigger a response in our own brains that makes us feel like laughing as well. This is due to a social phenomenon known as emotional contagion, where we can “catch” emotions from those around us.
Studies have shown that hearing laughter can activate the brain’s reward center and release feel-good chemicals like endorphins, which can make us feel happier and more relaxed. This positive feeling can then spread to others, causing them to start laughing as well.
Interestingly, the contagious nature of laughter can even extend to hearing recordings of laughter or reading something humorous. So even if you’re not in the same room as someone else who is laughing, you might still find yourself laughing along with them!
This phenomenon is clearly demonstrated watching this video. Peter Schupp is riding home from work on a Tuesday evening in a train full of passengers when (on purpose it turns out) builds up to a wild, continuous laughter while appearing to talk on the phone. His goal was to make everyone feel just a little bit better after a hard day’s work and he certainly did.
It turns out Peter was working with The Liberators, a group that focuses on making people feel better about themselves and the world around them. But I’m pretty sure everyone on the train was grateful! Watch the full video below and please leave us a Facebook comment to let us know what you thought!
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