Why it is important
Compassionate behavior strengthens brain circuits for pleasure and reward. It increases happiness and self-esteem. It reduces risk of heart disease and speeds up recovery from disease. Compassionate people become less vulnerable to loneliness which cause stress and harm the immune system. Compassion may even lengthen our lifespan.
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Category: Spiritual healthResearch
-  Klimecki, O. M., Leiberg, S., Lamm, C., & Singer, T. (2013). Functional neural plasticity and associated changes in positive affect after compassion training. Cerebral Cortex, 23(7), 1552-1561. View
-  Mongrain, M, Chin, J, Shapira, LB (2010) Practicing compassion increases happiness and self-esteem. Journal of Happiness Studies 12: pp. 963-981. View
-  Kok, B. E., & Fredrickson, B. L. (2010). Upward spirals of the heart: Autonomic flexibility, as indexed by vagal tone, reciprocally and prospectively predicts positive emotions and social connectedness. Biological Psychology, 85(3), 432-436. doi:10.1016/j.biopsycho.2010.09.005. View
-  The Science of Compassion: Origins, Measures, and Interventions - Steve Cole, Ph.D. YouTube. View
-  Diener, E., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Beyond money: Toward an economy of well-being.Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 5, 1–31.
-  Motives for volunteering are associated with mortality risk in older adults. Konrath, Sara; Fuhrel-Forbis, Andrea; Lou, Alina; Brown, Stephanie. Health Psychology, Vol 31(1), Jan 2012, 87-96. View
-  Sherlyn Jimenez, see article on Compassion, The Encyclopedia of Positive Psychology, Volume I, Editor: Shane Lopez, Wiley-Blackwell, ISBN 978-1-4051-6125-1