A 2012 study demonstrated an amazing phenomenon. Certain types of green algae, known as Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, are able to draw energy from other plants around them. This ground-breaking study from biologists at Bielefeld University raised interesting questions about how plants survive. It goes against the established knowledge that all plants (including algae) need photosynthesis to survive. The results show that, in the absence of carbon sources and in limited light, plants can still grow.
This fascinating discovery seems to present opportunities in the biofuels industry, and opens the door for further research into how this works and how it can be applied to benefit mankind. However, many people have also speculated on whether humans can also draw energy form one another in a similar way. Do humans feed off of one another’s energy?
Anecdotally, many of us can read a situation or the mood of a room. There are many physical cues that indicate a person’s internal feelings. Yet is it truly possible for us to draw on this energy? In this article we’ll examine how emotions can impact the way we feel towards others, and what this means for certain everyday situations.
Group dynamics are difficult to fully explain. Many of us can relate to the feeling when someone enters a room or a group with a bleak outlook. It can affect our own mood, and alter the way a group interacts. The same is true in the opposite sense; positive people with a lot of energy can lift the feeling of a room. There is plenty of evidence to support the idea of group dynamics being impacted by individuals and their mind-set.
Other research has shown the power of positive thoughts in a measured way. A 1998 study looked at the power of prayer on a small sample of AIDS patients. Using ‘distance healing’ half of the sample had daily prayers said for them, without their knowledge. These patients saw fewer new symptoms and had fewer visits from the doctor than the control group. Intention and the power of positive energy can impact those around us.
So how should we bring a positive energy to our lives? Below are some examples of steps you can take to project positive feelings in your daily life:
Don’t Dwell Negative Thoughts
Life can be tough, for everyone. We all have good days and bad days, but how we deal with the bad days is just as important as how we enjoy the good days. Try not to dwell on the negative thoughts too much. This negative energy will continue to feed itself if you do. It can be very noticeable to others and impact them negatively. Instead of dwelling on the negatives, try to look to the positives of a situation instead. If you’re sharing your problems with someone, you should try to bring any positivity you can. They will be able to feed of this and be better placed to help you.
Don’t Dwell on the Past
This is age-old advice in itself. The past is gone, as are any mistakes you may have made. The past shouldn’t be ignored totally; it’s what’s shaped you after all. But you need to learn from your history and move forward with positivity. A positive, forgiving attitude will make people trust you more as well.
Appreciate the Small Things
Positive energy can be taken from many things in life, big and small. Be sure to appreciate the small things; the little victories and the simple pleasures. This can help you feel a sense of contentment, and others will see this in you and can feed off of it.
Positivity in the Workplace is Key
A positive workplace benefits everyone who works there. Happier employees are more productive, innovative, and help create a better work environment. Studies show the importance of workplace happiness, which is closely related to the energy you and your coworkers give off. Happy people are around 12% more productive at work, according to a recent study from the University of Warwick. This demonstrates how vital happiness is in all settings. And, as we’ve demonstrated above, positive energy can bring this sense of happiness. Group dynamics are impacted by positive people, suggesting that we actively feed off each other in a positive way (whether we are aware of it or not).
Conversely, the same study found that unhappy workers are around 10% less productive. This is the reason why major companies across the world are investing more time and energy into making their employees happier. It all starts with positive thoughts and energy, and the impact can be huge.
Positivity in Relationships Nurtures Both Partners
The psychological importance of positive thinking and energy is clear. We’ve seen above how important it can be for employees to feel happy in their work. Individuals thrive when they’re content with life, and this is also true of relationships. Positivity can bring a number of benefits to relationships of all kinds. Not only does it create feelings of contentment and happiness, this good energy tends to feed further positive feelings. Happy couples tend to value each other more, having higher opinions of their partner. Giving praise and credit to your partner or friend will improve the relationship. This is especially true if the favor is returned. Bonds are strengthened, and feelings of contentment grow.
Much like we saw with positivity in the workplace, and much like the green algae, people thrive on the energy of others. It really can transform relationships, as people feel more inclined towards people who are positive. Research has been conducted that demonstrates the intuitive connection between individuals. The study examined the heart and brain activity of participants being shown emotive and calming pictures. Pre-stimulus heart activity, activity before pictures were shown, was measured. The results showed that co-participant groups experienced a greater sense of intuition.
Can We Draw Energy from Each Other?
From the examples we’ve seen so far, it is clear that we do draw on the energy from others in a very real way. Although it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact mechanism of this, as people we can feel it. It’s clear that on a conscious and subconscious level, we are aware of the feelings and intentions of those around us—as well as their energy. As one expert has discovered, humans and plants emit ‘biophotons,’ light particles that transmit information between cells. Could this be the energy that we draw from each other—or maybe just one detectable aspect of the tremendous energy that gets passed between people? It seems quite obvious.
We can say for certain that positivity breeds positivity. People are more productive when they’re happy, and relationships can be strengthened through this same process. There have been some studies that show the benefits of good intentions and intuition, which perhaps show ways through which we can draw energy. Hopefully, future studies will not only confirm these exchange of this, but allow us to understand precisely how it works and allow us to better harness its true potential.