“You make a life by what you give.” – Winston Churchill
Could you use a happy boost? Use the Motee app to send a friend a Motee message. It’s a fun, easy (and free!) way to show your appreciation or respect for something someone did. Here’s some of the science behind why Team Motee wanted to create a way to easily send a friend a compliment. You might think it’s for your friend, but actually, you both reap the benefits.
Helping others has always been something that brought about good feelings. On the surface level, that’s true! Helping others brings on a positive wave of emotions because we know it’s the right, good thing to do. But there’s something a little more beneath the surface of this common phenomenon. Helping others releases natural doses of oxytocin. It’s the best mojo booster of all time.
You may have heard of it in your high school biology class. It’s one of our big neurotransmitter hormones. It occurs naturally and plays a big role in romance and reproduction. With the help of research and testing by scientists, we’ve discovered that oxytocin is responsible for much more than just baby making.
A top expert in oxytocin named Dr. Paul Zak, has dubbed it the “moral molecule“. He and others have found that oxytocin is responsible for working as a “social glue that keeps society together.” It’s the neurotransmitter that helps humans feel trust, virtue, affection, and love. Dr. Zak has done tests on the natural and artificial release of oxytocin in the bloodstream. He discovered that humans under the effects of oxytocin are more generous and trusting, with little difference in the results between natural or artificial sources.
According to Dr. Zak’s research, helping others will trigger the release of oxytocin. When your body gets a dose from something that triggers the release, it becomes habitual and easier to release a second time. Happiness builds happiness! A wave of good feelings isn’t the only trend ocytocin creates.
Oxytocin boosts radiate from one person to another. It’s a cascade of happiness. This creates a cycle of positive behavior and good feelings. For example, if you help someone study, there is a positive effect on the giver and receiver. The emotions feed and reinforce into a bloom of happy.
There are other ways, too, that helping another person can benefit the helper. Getting out there and helping someone (even a friend!) can reap benefits. Scientists in Canada found that the chemical can help promote extroversion. The Research Chair in Developmental Psychopathology at Concordia University, Mark Ellenbogen, reports that “our study shows oxytocin can change how people see themselves, which could in turn make people more sociable. Under the effects of oxytocin, people can perceive themselves as more extraverted, more open to new ideas and more trusting.”