Can social networking really mimic an in-person connection in our brain? It seems science has now shown, at least in this experiment, that oxytocin levels spiked and cortisol was reduced while tweeting.
Below is an excerpt from Fast Company’s “Social Networking Affects Brains Like Falling in Love”. The article goes on to say that should these experiments (by Neuroeconomist Paul Zak) prove to be the norm, this should serve as a wake up call for every business …
While tweeting … my oxytocin levels spiked 13.2%. That’s equivalent to the hormonal spike experienced by the groom at the wedding Zak attended. Meanwhile, stress hormones cortisol and ACTH went down 10.8% and 14.9%, respectively.
Zak explains that the results are linked, that the release of oxytocin I experienced while tweeting reduced my stress hormones. If that’s the case, says Zak, social networking might reduce cardiovascular risks, like heart attack and stroke, associated with lack of social support. But there’s even more to our findings.
“Your brain interpreted tweeting as if you were directly interacting with people you cared about or had empathy for,” Zak says. “E-connection is processed in the brain like an in-person connection.”
Read the entire, very interesting, article.