Choose your friends very carefully

Our friends have a huge impact on us. Really huge.

Our friends have an impact on whether we smoke, how much money we earn, our lifestyle… even our happiness itself. For example, an obese friend increases your risk of obesity by 171% – that’s far more powerful than even genetics!

Thank the next happy friend that you think of. Each happy friend increases our chances of being happy by 9%. An extra $5,000 in income only increases our chances by 2% so each happy friend we have is worth about $22,500 🙂

And check your profile picture on Facebook. People who smile for their profile picture have 15% more close friends than the rest. Yep, I’d bet that your social networks has a huge impact on your life.

As my mother says, smile and the world smiles with you, frown and you’ll frown alone…

The research shows that the ‘degrees of separation’ effects weaken to nothing after three or four levels (so your friends, their friends and even the friends of your friend’s friend are likely to have an impact on you) – that’s a whole bunch of people you’ve never even met!

So: Who are your closest friends?

(based on my article on

6 comments on “Choose your friends very carefully

  1. I think there is a distinction with those who are genuine than those who are shallow and artificial which of course exhibits itself either slowly or in time.

  2. for sure, Garry – and I’m mostly talking about what you might call ‘genuine’ friends… not mere acquaintances.
    While it’s hard to make the definitions clear enough to do any solid research, I think you’d find that even acquaintances have an impact, albeit a weaker one.

  3. Hi Dan, I would like to follow your blog on mine but unable to do so. My blog can be found via Facebook website with my webpage on it

  4. Well, smile or frown is just a person’s facial expression. It may show the person’s mood but it’s never gonna tell if this guy is good or bad.
    I agree the point that we need to be careful for making friends, but to be careful of what? your closest friend which you’ve known for 10 years may betray you or set you up! From what i experienced is that some people are really good at pretending, there’s no way for you to know s/he really is till s/he did something which is hurtful.
    what you discussed above is sort of superficial, how do we know a person’s real heart?

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