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Doing Life Together

happy-face-istockHappiness is a good thing, right?

Yes and no. There is actually a down side to too much happiness.

1)   Happy people tend to be less persuasive. When happy, you can overlook details. Unhappy people can focus more on the details, create stronger arguments and thus do better with persuasion.

2)   Happy people can be too trusting. When happy, you tend to overlook deceit and have more difficulty detecting lies. This means you may not evaluate someone accurately and that can have major implications for hiring, dating and making decisions about people. You can make more errors in judgment.

3)   Happy people are more likely to slack off in their thinking. They don’t remember as many details as unhappy people and often rely on stereotypes rather than searching out the details. A little negativity brings more attention to detail and discernment in crises. A little unhappiness keeps you more alert and focused on problem-solving.

So while happiness feels good, it doesn’t always put us at our best for thinking, trusting and persuading others. I’m not saying you should live an unhappy life. Simply put, a little unhappiness at times may be good for us!

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