Talking to strangers leads to more wellbeing—for yourself and others

It is surprising how little inter-human contact is made in the densely populated city centers. We seem to behave like crowds of isolated individuals. Most people think that talking to a stranger during their commute will be a negative experience. However, a study published in The Journal of Experimental Psychology, shows that people report a greater sense of well-being after talking to a stranger on the bus. Commuting is consistently reported to be one of the least pleasant experiences in the average worker’s day.  “This experiment suggests that a surprising antidote for an otherwise unpleasant experience could be sitting very close by,” says study researcher Nicholas Epley. The message of the study is clear: People can improve the experience of their own day—as well as that of others—by being more social with strangers.

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Talking to strangers leads to more wellbeing—for yourself and others

It is surprising how little inter-human contact is made in the densely populated city centers. We seem to behave like crowds of isolated individuals. Most people think that talking to a stranger during their commute will be a negative experience. However, a study published in The Journal of Experimental Psychology, shows that people report a greater sense of well-being after talking to a stranger on the bus. Commuting is consistently reported to be one of the least pleasant experiences in the average worker’s day.  “This experiment suggests that a surprising antidote for an otherwise unpleasant experience could be sitting very close by,” says study researcher Nicholas Epley. The message of the study is clear: People can improve the experience of their own day—as well as that of others—by being more social with strangers.

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