wondered by Joana Galhardo Tags , ,

Yep. Scientists have discovered that when we perform synchronized activities such as singing songs, reciting chants or even just walking together, we end up feeling more connected to the people we're performing these activities with. Although, it turns out it's not exactly what you're saying or singing that matters, it's just the fact that you're performing these activities in unison with other people.

Researchers at Stanford University found that when volunteers were instructed to walk around campus together, the simple difference between letting them walk normally versus instructing them to walk in step with each other increased the volunteers willingness to cooperate with each other afterward.
Even more surprisingly, how harmonious the participants felt had nothing to do with any positive emotions created by the synchronized activities themselves. Whether or not they enjoyed performing the activities, they simply became more cooperative with each other!

The researchers concluded that "synchronized rituals" may therefore have evolved as a way for societies to get individuals to work together and be willing to make personal sacrifices for the benefit of the group.

So, the next time you and your friends are singing your lungs out when you're a bit tipsy (or just cheerful, 'cause we are respectful people over here!), remember that you are not making a fool of yourself; in fact, you are helping the cohesion of your group!

Wonder about that!