Proof that Rudeness is Contagious

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bullying, incivility, rudeness, unprofessional, rtconnections, anti-bullying
Did you ever notice that the longer people spend with each other, the more they start acting the same? They start using the same slang words, “Whattup?” They dress the same, like the same foods and share the same interests. And, they don’t even realize it.
My best friend Kim calls people “honey.” Around Christmas time this past year; I was spending a lot of time with her (typical downtime for speakers).  A few months later, my daughter said to me, “I’ve never heard you call anyone honey before but in the last few days you’ve called me honey several times.”
I didn’t even notice.
It’s because of something in our brains called mirror neurons that mimic what we see, hear, and experience. The more time you spend with someone (good, bad, or ugly), the more likely it is that your brain will mimic him/her.
That’s why you need to stay away from negative-nasty people and surround yourself with positive-supportive ones because rudeness, meanness, and bullying behavior are contagious.
And now there is proof!

In a recent study published in the Journal of Applied Psychology, rudeness is as contagious as a virus! It’s due to something similar to mirror neurons called the autonomic cognitive mechanism. Basically, it means your subconscious is automatically absorbing and then mimicking the attitudes, behaviors, and actions of other people. The more time you spend with someone (like your best friend or co-workers) the more likely your subconscious will adopt his or her behaviors. click here to read the report.
1.     Minimize the time you spend with the energy vampires, you know, the ones who suck the life out of you. Remember, although you may not be able to completely ignore some people, set boundaries with the nastiest ones.
2.     Spend more time with positive people. This can help tip the balance of good versus bad influence in your brain and also increase your chances of positive mimicking.
3.     Start spreading some kindness! Find reasons to compliment each other, say nice things about other people, and share the accomplishments of your colleagues.
While rudeness is contagious, so is kindness.
Thanks so much for reading my blog. If you like this post, I recommend the following:
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Take care and stay connected!
About the author: Dr. Renee Thompson is a keynote speaker, author and professional development/anti-bullying thought leader. Renee spends the majority of her time helping healthcare and academic organizations address and eliminate bullying behavior. To find out how you can bring Renee to YOUR organization or nursing event, click here.

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