A Positive Attitude May Protect You from Heart Problems and Even Stroke

first_imgSeattle Post Intelligencer:It’s not far-fetched to think that optimistic people are not only happier but also healthier. Some scientists now believe that keeping a positive attitude may even reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.“Past research has linked optimism with a range of health benefits, including cardiovascular outcome,” said Eric Kim, a doctoral student in clinical psychology at the University of Michigan and lead author of a study that was recently published in the medical journal, “Stroke,” a publication of the American Heart Association. What always remained a mystery is exactly how a sunny temperament affects a person’s health.Read more: Seattle Post Intelligencer More of our Members in the Media >last_img

Brand-conscious consumers see brand failure as a threat to their self-image

first_imgThe Economic Times:WASHINGTON: A new study by a University of Illinois marketing expert has indicated that consumers with close ties to a brand respond to negative information about the beloved brand as they do to personal failure – they experience it as a threat to their self-image.Tiffany Barnett White, a professor of business administration, said consumers with a high self-brand connection maintained favourable brand evaluations even when presented with negative brand information, suggesting that the reluctance of brand-conscious consumers to lower their opinion of a brand might be driven more by a motivation to protect the self.“When companies get consumers motivated about their products, they are just as motivated to protect the brand as they are themselves,” White said. Read the whole story: The Economic Times More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

Surprise! Guys want commitment, women want sex

first_imgToday Health:The difference in men’s and women’s attitudes toward sex are often taken for granted. Men want sex, women want commitment; men look for attractive mates and women go after social status.But not all psychologists are on board with these gender-essentialist statements.In a new review, University of Michigan psychologist Terri Conley and colleagues sift through psychology studies and find gender differences aren’t always as black-and-white (or pink-and-blue) as they seem. Here are six gender differences that may not be innate after all.Read the whole story: Today Healthlast_img

You’re not my type, but sure

first_imgThe Boston Globe:HAVE YOU EVER found yourself on a date with someone who, on paper, isn’t what you were looking for at all? It turns out that daters’ preferences in principle can get blindsided by another factor: compassion. In an experiment, single, heterosexual college students were shown dating profiles of other students. The researchers told some of the participants that these profiles represented actually available fellow students, while other participants were told that these profiles represented unavailable students. Read the whole story: The Boston Globelast_img

To Thine Own Self: The Psychology of Authenticity

first_imgThe Huffington Post:One of the core principles of Alcoholics Anonymous, the 12-step addiction-recovery program, is authenticity. At least two of the steps emphasize the importance of honest moral inventory, and the AA “chip” — the medallion handed out to commemorate periods of continued sobriety — reads, “To thine own self be true.”The people who created AA back in the 1930s were not scientists or philosophers, but the early literature contains many insights that scientists have verified in intervening years. The link between authenticity and morality and psychological health is not intuitively obvious. Some philosophers have indeed argued that the desire to be authentic — to act in a way that is consistent with one’s values and sense of self — is linked to well-being. But others have just as forcefully argued the opposite: that learning to express thoughts and feelings that obscure one’s true inner state is an important adaptation for successful living.A team of psychological scientists has been working to resolve this issue empirically. Francesca Gino, Maryam Kouchaki and Adam Galinsky — from the business schools at Harvard, Northwestern and Columbia, respectively — are not interested in addiction recovery as such, but they are interested in the psychological consequences of being true to oneself. Authenticity means not only owning one’s actions but acting in accordance with one’s thoughts, desires and needs. This commitment is essential for self-regulation, and violating this commitment leads to feelings of inauthenticity, which taint one’s moral self-concept and lead to emotional dysregulation. In short, being an imposter to oneself leads to moral and psychological distress.Read the whole story: The Huffington PostWray Herbert is an author and award-winning journalist who writes two popular blogs for APS, We’re Only Human and Full Frontal Psychology. Follow Wray on Twitter @wrayherbert. More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

Why Virginia Basketball Will Make You Yawn

first_imgThe Wall Street Journal:Everyone in the NCAA tournament has a pre-game routine, and they’re willing to entertain almost anything if it has the right psychological effects. Virginia guard Malcolm Brogdon, though, prepares for the opening tip in what may be the strangest way possible.“I’ve never met a player,” said teammate Marial Shayok, “who yawns on a consistent basis.”This is how one of college basketball’s best players gets ready for games: He yawns. It’s a habit that Virginia fans have begun anticipating and some of Brogdon’s teammates have seen so often that they barely notice anymore. The first time Shayok witnessed it, however, he couldn’t believe his eyes. “I thought it was an accident, and then I kept seeing him do it,” he said. “I thought he wasn’t napping before games.”…Almost anything related to yawning causes yawning, says Robert Provine, a University of Maryland, Baltimore County neuroscientist and esteemed yawnologist. His research shows that 55% of people yawn when they see someone else yawn—which may be why you want to yawn while reading about Brogdon yawning.The way yawning spreads would suggest that Brogdon is the patient zero in a yawning epidemic on Virginia’s basketball team, but his teammates say they’re immune. “It never catches on,” Shayok said.Read the whole story: The Wall Street Journal More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

The American Dream Is Alive and Well, Just Not So Much in America

first_imgTIME:Millions of immigrants have flocked to the United States in the hopes of making better lives for themselves. Nowadays, however, people hoping to achieve the iconic “American Dream” could be better off heading to Australia or Germany.That’s the central finding according to a recent study published in Psychological Science, which examined the influence of genetic factors on intelligence measures like aptitude and achievement, which are used to predict success at school and work. The researchers specifically wondered whether how these genetic influencers would differ between low and high levels of socioeconomic status, and whether the results would differ across countries.Read the whole story: TIMElast_img