Scaring, for both fun and profit abound this time of year. And, if the proliferation of ways in which to indulge this fondness for being scared to death is an indicator, we love it.
Now, if you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time you might pause here and ask yourself, what does being scared have to do with gratitude? Amazingly, there is a strong correlation due to the boost in oxytocin we get from both.
Ends up, one of the reasons we like being scared is that it produces a strong emotional response. And when we have strong emotional responses we release powerful hormones like oxytocin. This, in turn, helps us remember these experiences and the people we are with. Medical science calls this “pair bonding.” I call it connection.
We build strong bonds when we are in an excited state.
Fear is one such excited state. Hence the love of Halloween and all things scary.
Experiencing something unexpected is another one of those states. So, when we hand or send someone an unexpected note of gratitude or positively acknowledge him or her in an unexpected way both of us release more oxytocin and hence, feel good.
So whether you call it pair bonding or connection, go ahead. Share a scary experience this week and perhaps a grateful one too.