Leading by Nick Verron
In a recent blog post, I recognised the “social reflection” phenomenon. After watching the next documentary instalment from David Eagleman, I now know why this happens.
I’m sure everybody reading this has been in the following situation: a stranger smiles at you, and you can’t help but smile back. After finding out the reason behind this, I am absolutely fascinated!
This is because the human brain is always trying to understand what is around it. It is quite common that brains find their selves surrounded by like-minded creatures; the brain’s quest for understanding is no different when it comes to intricate social comprehension. To undertake this complex task, mirror neurons within the brain cause it to mimic expressions, “trying them on”. This is so you can experience this specific configuration of subtle facial expressions for yourself and better understand what they are intended to project. The same underlying principle relates to when we see people experience other emotions, and is why we flinch, cry and smile etc at movies. Even though you know the people on the screen in front of you are acting, you can’t help but simulate what they’re feeling to understand them. This is empathy.
Continue reading by clicking the link: Mirror, mirror, on them all | Nick Verron