Ripple's Effect

"A kid who reads this book can think about how happiness can help him overcome whatever shark he’s facing – whether it’s a bully, a negative person, or a toxic relationship. Happiness is contagious!" Read more in this book review of "Ripple's Effect."

By Momentous Institute | Jun 05, 2015
Book Review

Book Review: Ripple’s Effect
By Shawn Achor and Amy Blankson
 
Have you had an old fashioned laughing contest with someone? You know, the kind where you look into each other’s eyes and try to get the other person to laugh? It always ends the same way – once one person starts laughing, the other inevitably follows, resulting in a full-on giggle session. This is caused by something called mirror neurons. That is when the brain responds the same way when we perform an action as when we witness someone else perform an action. (Think of the cringing feeling you get when you see someone get hit by a ball, or the fast heart rate you feel when you watch someone finish a race, even if you’re just sitting on the couch watching it on TV.)
 
Mirror neurons explain what happens in the delightful children’s bookRipple’s Effect. The book is about a dolphin, Ripple, who gets placed in a pool with other sea creatures, including… a scary shark. All of the other animals are living in constant terror of the shark, but Ripple refuses to live that way. In the end, Ripple decides that she is going to have fun, and finally uses the classic laughing contest to turn the shark into a friend. It’s those mirror neurons at work!
 
We love this book because it’s the simplest concept. The dolphin has nothing special in her toolbox. All she had was a refusal to be miserable. She chose happiness. If we all choose happiness, the effect can be extraordinary. A kid who reads this book can think about how happiness can help him overcome whatever shark he’s facing – whether it’s a bully, a negative person, or a toxic relationship. Happiness is contagious! Just like the laughing contest, when one person chooses happiness, others will surely follow.