Sign up FAST! Login

Spend time with people you want to be like. Not only do your friends affect your behavior, so do their friends. And their friends’ friends

Stashed in: #TED, Influence!, @bakadesuyo, Awesome, Becoming, Relationships, Relationships, Introductions

To save this post, select a stash from drop-down menu or type in a new one:

Tons of research (and common sense) shows that the people around you influence your behavior. 

In fact, they influence it a lot more than you might think and probably more than you’re comfortable with admitting.

But here’s the really crazy part: not only do your friends affect your behavior, so do their friends. And their friends’ friends. Here’s Nicholas:

Across many different kinds of behavior: voting, cooperation, smoking, weight loss and weight gain, happiness, cooperative behavior, public health behaviors, we and others have been able to show that people are very meaningfully affected by the behaviors of other people to whom they’re connected. And here’s the kicker: they are also affected by the behaviors of people to whom they’re not directly connected. When your friend’s friends quit smoking or your friend’s friends friend become nicer and more cooperative, this ripples through the network and affects you. Similarly, when you make a positive change in your life, when you start running for example, or you participate in our democracy and you vote, it ripples outward from you and can affect dozens, hundreds, perhaps even thousands of other people.

So if you spend time with different people, could you become a different person? YES. 

Want the laziest way to improve your life? The prescription is simple…

1) Hang Around The People You Want To Be

We become like the people we spend time with. Choose wisely:

Here are the three main points of Eric's article:

  • Hang out with the people you want to be: Behaviors spread like a virus. Make sure it’s one you want to be infected with.
  • Make more friends. Time spent making friends has a higher happiness ROI than time spent making money.
  • Introduce friends to friends. Friends becoming happy increases your chance of happiness by 45%. Keeping the network happy protects you against unhappiness.

Wow! That is a powerful prescription for happiness

I don't know how powerful it is, but it's some good rules of thumb. 

I enjoyed the accompanying TED Talk on the influence of social networks.

You May Also Like: