This unsuspected habit could have a positive impact on your well-being, according to scientists

The start of a new year is often a time for making good resolutions. One of them is often to feel better. And according to recent discoveries, this simple habit has an unsuspected beneficial impact.

habit positive impact well-being mental health study
© Priscilla du Preez / Unsplash
habit positive impact well-being mental health study

'Stop talking for nothing'. Raise your hand if you've never heard the phrase! Supposed to silence those who talk too much, it implies that to engage in a discussion with your fellow human beings, you need to have something exciting to say. But a recent study refutes this prejudice. Far from being harmful, small talk is actually excellent for people's overall well-being.

Discover our latest podcast

The benefits of small talk

Papotage in the language of Molière, small talk in the language of Shakespeare, whatever you want to call it, a recent study published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, highlights the benefits to people's well-being of exchanging small talk.

By surveying 60,000 people in Turkey and the UK, the researchers realized that it's not always better to wait until you have something interesting to say. Exchanging banalities, a type of connection that seems to be lost in the age of screens and social networks, can bring self-satisfaction and greater well-being, by exchanging with other human beings.

Mastering the art of platitudes

But to be really effective, small talk needs to follow certain rules, so that it doesn't turn into a source of tension and frustration. To this end, the discussion must be kept light and deliberate. The aim is to create an initial connection that will act as a bridge to something deeper, if appropriate.

The experts recommend avoiding debates, intrusions into private life, negative viewpoints and heated topics such as politics or religion. Instead, it's best to talk about the weather, food, passions and so on. While for some this is easy to do, for others it can be a daunting task.

This article has been translated from Gentside FR.

Read more:

Talking in your sleep: Here's what it could mean for your health

These 5 habits are extremely harmful to your health on the long run

Science reveals this common habit could make your insomnia worse

Sources used:

American Psychology Association: Getting beyond small talk: Study finds people enjoy deep conversations with strangers

TalkShop: The Negative Impacts of Social Media on Face-to-Face Interactions

Social prescribing: What is it, and how does it impact mental health? Social prescribing: What is it, and how does it impact mental health?