Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston found that people with a bigger amygdala have more friends. This almond-shaped area is more than twice the size in people who are more social.
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Perhaps the most striking part of this research was the difference between the two groups:
- Less social people had less than 15 people with whom they had regular contact
- People with a bigger amygdala had as many as 50 acquaintances
The researchers aren’t sure of the direction of the relationship. Does a bigger amygdala lead to more friends or do more friends lead to a bigger amygdala?
The lead researcher said that the brain is a “use it or lose it organ.” So she postulated that it expands with the number and the nature of your relationships.
A simple way to have more friends
The thing we found most interesting was a BIGG tip about how to get more friends: People with more friends tended to have more complex relationships.
In other words, they mix business with pleasure!
And yet we’ve heard our whole lives – don’t mix business and pleasure. Wrong! You should mix the two.
It’s consistent with the BIGG idea behind BIGG success – synergy. We used to think it was essential to separate people into two camps – professional and personal.
However, many people miss a lot of opportunities by drawing this line between work and play. You can have better relationships with more people if you erase that line.
The relational power of social media
While the researchers didn’t look at online connections, we think this actually highlights one of the best things about social media. We get to see the whole person now.
We may meet someone in a business setting. But once we connect online, we can learn about their families, their hobbies, their interests and more.
Social media will help you keep track of what’s going on in the lives of more people. By watching status updates in your stream, you can pull something personal up with business colleagues.
It deepens the relationship instantly. The people in your life know you’re paying attention to them.
It helps create synergy which leads to more fun AND better results. Now that’s BIGG success.
Have you found that social media helps you keep up with more people?
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