Is the taboo of love in the workplace dead?

If your workplace is like many others, the mention of love between co-workers is grounds to go and get HR. Having spent almost 20 years in HR leadership, this would often mean coming to see me. Normally this was due to corporate policies regarding romance in the workplace and an opportunity to make a bit of a joke. None of these instances ever amounted to anything.

Having said this, I find it quite common for co-workers to get a bit uncomfortable when talking openly about love at work. This is an absolute shame because as a workplace happiness consultant, I am acutely aware of how powerful positive emotions can be on the dynamic of successful teams.

So, maybe there is a better way to frame up what love is?

Well, one of my favorite thought leaders in the field of positive psychology, Dr. Barbara Fredrickson, has done just that in her talk: ‘Love – a new lens on the science of thriving’

Dr. Fredrickson puts forward some great science that stretches the boundaries of how love is viewed. She defines “micro-moments of love” where we have positive emotions, maintain good eye contact, engage in dialogue, and then…wait for it…our brain’s sync!

Brain scan images of two people visiting together reveal a perfect match “There is one pattern being experienced across two brains.” This is fascinating enough as it is, but it gets even better. Those who brain-sync more thrive more by benefiting from things like mutual oxytocin release and improved heart regulation and function.

I have been a part of sessions at Happywork where ‘micro-moments love’ produced a real breakthrough. This is one of the most energizing and positive work environments I have been a part of and it motivates me to create them again and again. Dr. Fredrickson points out how these brain sync moments are so critical for our survival.

I wonder if the world is ready for ‘micro moments of love’ or if it is fine just calling it collaboration?

What do you think?
Are workplaces ready for love?

Dr Barbara Fredrickson

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