What do podcasts say about who we are?
Plus, a quick tip for being more creative
“Receiving flowers on a birthday is great. Receiving flowers on Valentine's Day, that's great too. But receiving flowers from a partner on a random Tuesday? That's amazing.” – Psychologist Jeff Galak
Listen up! Are podcasts good for you? In a new study, researchers looked at the motivations and outcomes of people who frequently listen to podcasts. They found podcast listeners have a few things in common: openness to experience, interest-based curiosity, and a need to understand and make sense of the world. There were also positive outcomes associated with listening to podcasts, including higher social engagement with other people. That may be because when we listen to podcasts, we love to talk about them. Additionally, the researchers reported that “presence of meaning was higher among those who listened to more podcasts per month and were more socially engaged with podcasts.” In other words, it seemed people felt a greater sense of meaning in life the more they listened to podcasts. What an interesting study! Of course, we might be a little biased.
Walk this way. Lots of activities can spark your creativity – walking is one of them. In a series of experiments, researchers gave volunteers two creativity tests: Guilford’s alternate uses test, which asks the participant to come up with as many uses for a single object as possible; and the remote associations test, which is a word association test of sorts. People scored higher on both tests when they were walking outside or on a treadmill. “Whether one is outdoors or on a treadmill, walking improves the generation of novel yet appropriate ideas,” the researchers write, “and the effect even extends to when people sit down to do their creative work shortly after.” They acknowledged that more research is needed to see how this effect translates to people with limited mobility. But it’s not just walking. Other research has found that creativity is sparked by everything from getting enough rest to taking a shower. Creativity can strike in many different ways, as long as we create the space for it.
Small talk. As you go about your day, you likely interact with family, friends, and coworkers. These relationships can help you feel cared for and connected. But what if there’s a whole category of people in your life whose impact is overlooked? Listen to learn more.
ON THE HIDDEN BRAIN PODCAST
Dec 5: When big holidays roll around, many of us find ourselves awash in bad gifts. We may smile and say 'Thank you,' but inside we ask, 'What made you think I would want something so hideous?' This week, we explore new research on why the presents we offer for birthdays and holidays often miss their mark — and learn some tips on how to do it better.
ON THE MY UNSUNG HERO PODCAST
Dec 6: Kate Baker recalls the three women who offered comfort after her toddler had a medical emergency on a plane.
Don’t forget to send us the story of your unsung hero! Record a voice memo on your phone and email it to email@example.com.
A dealer bought an item for $7, sold it for $8, bought it back for $9, and sold it for $10. How much profit did she make?
LAST WEEK’S PUZZLE
Stephen was looking at a photo. Someone asked him, "Whose picture are you looking at?" He replied: "I don't have any brother or sister, but this man's father is my father's son." So, whose picture was Stephen looking at?
The answer: The man in the photo is Stephen's son.
FROM THE TWITTERATI…
A MOMENT OF JOY
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