Does it seem like some of your friends share way too much about their personal lives on their Facebook pages, everything from bad breakups, to bathroom updates, to how much bacon they can eat in one sitting? Well, according to scientists, they don’t do it to annoy you, they do it because it makes them feel good.
In a study at Harvard University, volunteers were given brain scans while offering their opinion on several topics. The result: Talking about themselves and giving their opinion lit up the pleasure centers of the brain, the same “feel good” areas that are triggered by food, intimacy, and winning the lottery. And when people shared things about themselves in front of others, that area of the brain lit up even more. And the more feedback they got from their audience, the more activity there was.
So, next time your friend Larry over-shares by posting comments like, “Cutting my toenails” or “Uh-oh, ran out of toilet paper,” you’ll know he’s actually looking for a mood boost, and it’ll make him feel even better if you toss a “Like” his way.