The Harmful Effects of Workplace Negativity – How it’s Literally Killing You

Recent research has shown that emotions can have a huge impact on your health and your overall performance on a team!

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Leaders within a workplace are responsible for making sure their employees are goal-oriented and hardworking which is incredibly difficult when negative attitudes are pervasive on a team.

Recent studies have shown that emotions can have a huge impact on the overall performance of a team! “We engage in emotional contagion,” says Sigal Barsade, a Wharton management professor who studies the influence of emotions on the workplace. “Emotions travel from person to person like a virus.”Her research on emotional contagion in groups shows that just one person’s thoughts, behaviors, and emotions can spread in a number of surprising and damaging ways.

Scientific research indicates that negativity is contagious, similar to the common cold.

“Feelings circulate in patterns analogous to what’s seen from epidemiological models of disease,” reported Wired.

In 2015, an analysis of almost 300 studies found that harmful workplace practices were as bad for mortality, and as likely to lead to a physician-diagnosed illness, as second-hand smoke, a known — and regulated — carcinogen.

Everybody brings their emotions to work. You bring your brain to work. You bring your emotions to work. Feelings drive performance. They drive behavior and other feelings. Think of people as emotion conductors.

Barsade says research suggests that positive people tend to do better in the workplace, and it isn’t just because people like them more than naysayers. “Positive people cognitively process more efficiently and more appropriately. If you’re in a negative mood, a fair amount of processing is going to that mood. When you’re in a positive mood, you’re more open to taking in information and handling it effectively.”

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