This week, reach out to an old friend
Plus, the drawbacks of discipline
“Our perceptions, our beliefs, our experiences are always an interpretation. They're always filtered through the lens of the mindsets that we have.” –psychologist Alia Crum
Reach out. Have you thought about contacting an old friend recently? New research suggests you should go ahead and do it – the people we’ve lost touch with are happy to hear from us. In a series of experiments with nearly 6,000 volunteers, Peggy Liu and her colleagues looked at interactions between old friends. For example, in one experiment, researchers asked people to write a note to someone they hadn’t talked to in a while. Then the researchers asked both the writer and recipient how much they appreciated the message. On a seven-point scale, the writers rated the recipients’ appreciation at 5.57 on average. Turns out, the recipients rated their actual appreciation at 6.17. “Many people have lost touch with others in their lives, including many friends. Despite wanting to reconnect, I think many people are hesitant about doing so,” Liu told the Guardian. She added that her team started the research because they felt like people have been increasingly disconnected. “We wondered why that might be,” she said. So go ahead – reach out and say hello.
Workin’ it. We all have that quiet, list-making, deadline-hitting colleague in our office. In a new study, researchers found that highly disciplined people tend to be viewed as more robotic and therefore less warm and sociable than others. As a result, people are less interested in spending time with them. There’s an added problem for these folks: highly-disciplined workers are often given more work than others because they’re reliable. This means “they could be more vulnerable to health problems such as exhaustion and burnout,” said study co-author Samantha Lapka. The study is a good reminder to give the office workhorse a break. Oh, and invite that person out to lunch sometime.
What we gain from pain. We’ve all heard the saying, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” But is there any truth to this idea? We explore the concept of post-traumatic growth. Listen to learn more.
ON THE HIDDEN BRAIN PODCAST
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ON THE MY UNSUNG HERO PODCAST
July 26: In 2009, Ayanna Thomas was walking through Tokyo, without an umbrella, when it started to rain. Then a stranger appeared by her side.
Don’t forget to send us the story of your unsung hero! Record a voice memo on your phone and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The day before two days after the day before tomorrow is Saturday. What day is it today?
LAST WEEK’S PUZZLE
First, I threw away the outside and cooked the inside. Then I ate the outside and threw away the inside. What did I eat?
The answer: Corn on the cob.
FROM THE TWITTERATI…
A MOMENT OF JOY
Penguins go on field trips, too.
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