Have you ever noticed that you can be feeling down in the dumps and a hug or some kind of contact from someone you know or are close to can immediately give you a boost? This isn’t really in our mind it’s actually a chemical we naturally produce called oxytocin.
Oxytocin is produced by our hypothalamus. In the past we only thought about oxytocin’s role when it came to women and the onset of labor. Now we know there is another big role and that is about our social connections.
Having adequate amounts of oxytocin can help mood elevation as well as social areas of our life. Not having enough oxytocin can affect our personal relationships with family and friends.
Reason Why We Feel Bonded to People
Although they say opposites attract each other, it is hardly the case in real life. Truth is that we feel much more comfortable with people who are similar to us. We instantly project ourselves and our opinion about ourselves on them, making them much more likable in our eyes. In a manner of speaking, arrogance plays a big part in the entire process. There is a similar pattern with our children. Each parent would love if he and the child are alike. Furthermore, many of them would like to correct their own mistakes through child, not giving it an option to make own decisions. In many cases, all of these things are mental. These are all creations of our mind which are helping us accept reality and people around us. But there is a biological component in the entire story. One of our hormones, called oxytocin, plays a big part in the entire process.
Some people refer to this hormone as bonding hormone. To be honest, it describes it perfectly. Have you ever asked yourself why do you like some person or why do you always befriend those similar to you? The answer is really simple; it is because of oxytocin and its influence on our organism. This particular hormone is responsible for certain positive, human traits such as trust and loyalty, but given the situation, it can also have a big impact on behavior like dishonesty and fear. When we first meet a person, our basic instinct awakens within us. First glance can tell us some basic information and as we start talking, we decide whether to trust the individual or not. In most cases, when we talk about friendly relationship or romantic ones, we prefer people who are similar to us. This is because their traits are familiar; we can connect to them on a certain level. All those similarities reduce the fear factor produced by oxytocin and increase trust factor produced by the same hormone. This is precisely why some people go to extremes when it comes to new contacts, and they can befriend or hate many different individuals. The level of oxytocin hormone regulates this, making us feel more or less comfortable in a new company.
As mentioned, oxytocin regulates different types of behavior, usually extreme ones. Similarly to individual relationships, it regulates group behavior. It makes us integrate easier within a group of people with similar interests such as ours. It is one of the most important, if not crucial, biological element for formation of different groups. Those who have similar goal often feel comfortable in each other’s company, bonded by a feeling of mutual purpose. This mindset is the main reason why extremist groups are ready for such sacrifices. Loyalties go so far, that the individuals are willing to put interest of the group in front of their own.
Although oxytocin has its positives and negatives, it is an important hormone that assists us with bonding with other people and forming long-lasting relationships. Those who lack oxytocin should adequately replenish it through use of supplements such as oxytocin nasal spray or oxytocin sublingual drops. This way you can make sure that you will have a good social life and good interaction with those that are close to you.
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