Essential Reads

Gossip in Your Workplace Probably Does More Good Than Harm

Gossip is a social skill, NOT a character flaw; it is essential to work life.

Hate Small Talk? It’s a Skill Worth Learning

5 Ways to Make Conversation about Unimportant Things

How We Frame Emotions Through Facial Expressions

In art and in real life, our faces tell stories that we reveal to others.

I'm Having An Impossible Time With A Break-Up

Break-Ups Are Harder In The Age of Social Media

Recent Posts on Social Life

The Advantages of Being an Outsider

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on April 26, 2015 in A Sideways View
Most people are members of some minority group. Rather than seeing this as a disadvantage there are reasons to believe it can give people valuable insights and skills.

What Explains the Apparent Increase in Bad Manners?

By Gad Saad Ph.D. on April 25, 2015 in Homo Consumericus
Many people lament the apparent rise of bad manners in contemporary online and offline settings. In her latest book "Good Manners for Nice People Who Sometimes Say F*uck" Amy Alkon offers some practical solutions to the onslaught of daily boorish behaviors.

Gossip in Your Workplace Probably Does More Good Than Harm

By Frank T McAndrew Ph.D. on April 25, 2015 in Out of the Ooze
Campaigns to stamp out workplace gossip overlook the fact that gossip is part of who we are and an essential part of what makes work groups function as well as they do. It is more productive to think of gossip as a social skill rather than as a character flaw, because it is only when we do not do it well that we get into trouble.

Spinster is the New Black

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on April 25, 2015 in Living Single
Single people are having a moment. Articles are popping up everywhere about ways of living fully and joyfully outside of marriage and nuclear families. Suddenly, spinster is the new black. The question is, who gets to wear it?

The Social Layers of TV and Film Fandom

How is watching your favorite show a form of "social media"?

Hate Small Talk? It’s a Skill Worth Learning

By F. Diane Barth L.C.S.W. on April 24, 2015 in Off the Couch
Do you hate small talk? You’re not alone, of course. Maybe you’re shy, or introverted, or maybe you’re bored by it. Or do you get irritated by the apparently endless and meaningless chatter? Here are 5 reasons to change your mind. And 5 techniques for getting better at it.

Love Is a Roller Coaster

Freefalling into love is most thrilling when we've made a climb.

The Decline of Violence

You might not know it by watching TV, but violence in the modern world is at a historic low. This fact may well be the silver lining of evolutionary mismatch!

Verde Primaverile

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on April 21, 2015 in One Among Many
As in previous, Italian-titled posts, I put together some fragments for your enjoyment and mulling. Two of today’s chips are on happiness.

Technology May Be Ruining Your Ability to Read Emotions

Research shows how our digital world may be taking a toll on our emotional intelligence.

How We Frame Emotions Through Facial Expressions

How our faces express emotions is a moving window into our minds.

Homework: An Hour a Day Is All the Experts Say

How much time does your teen spend doing busy school work each night? According to a recent study, if it's more than one hour…then it's too much.

Backward America

By Ken Eisold Ph.D. on April 20, 2015 in Hidden Motives
Do we just take it for granted that the U.S. is the best at everything? We don’t seem to notice how bad things really are or how much better off other countries are in ways we used to excel.

Being a Book Lover

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on April 20, 2015 in Media Spotlight
Being a heavy reader is far less common than it used to be. European surveys suggest that leisure reading has dropped significantly in favour of watching television, for example. Still, books can have a powerful influence on readers. A new research study shows there are far more benefits to reading than you might think.

Alien Landing in Sindelfingen

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on April 19, 2015 in One Among Many
Imagine a world in which “learning” is easy. Believe anything! Such a world exists. It was recently put on display in Sindelfingen, Germany.

I'm Having An Impossible Time With A Break-Up

Breaking Up in The Age of Social Media

All Kids Lie To Their Parents. But When? How Much?

Respecting children's boundaries while staying strict and engaged is the best way to encourage them to share information and to keep them from lying.

3 Tips for Seeking Compassion When Emotionally Distressed

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on April 19, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
When you want to reach out after an emotionally distressing event, which person is more likely to be compassionate and supportive, someone who has been through a similar experience or someone who has not? Read on to find out...

The Art and Science of Haggling

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on April 18, 2015 in A Sideways View
Often the most popular skills based courses are those on negotiation. They teach among other things the gentle but very important arts of haggling and persuasion: in short how to get a good deal. Why is it so important and what is the fundamental psychology of haggling?

Fifty Shades of Gay

By Rick Miller LICSW on April 17, 2015 in Unwrapped
An ever-widening spectrum of choices and possibilities means that the gay community is truly taking on all of the colors of the rainbow, every shade and hue.

What Your Facebook Use Reveals About Your Personality

Research shows the way you interact on social media says a lot about your personality and your self-esteem.

The Upside of Jealousy

Simply put, jealousy is motivated by fear. When fear is driving your behaviors, it is essential to tune into the cognitive components that accompany the fear to help you break it down and make it containable.

Putting the Happiness Back in “Young and Happy”

By Ran Zilca on April 17, 2015 in Confessions of a Techie
Happiness is a by-product of the pursuit of success, rather than successful accomplishments. Individuals who are actively engaged in the pursuit of goals that are meaningful to them, experience a range of positive emotions and become happier.

Expanding the Self

We should reciprocate the gift of our own lives..... To be focused narrowly - worrying excessively about our personal skills and accomplishments and about the public's regards of these - is to remain forever a child.

The 4 Styles of Humor

What do you find funny, and what sort of humor appeals to you? Research has focused on different humor styles, and distinguishes four types.

7 Online Dating Tips for Introverts

By Sophia Dembling on April 14, 2015 in The Introvert's Corner
Online dating can be great for introverts, but it's easy to get overwhelmed and discouraged. A few tips to help master the learning curve.

Is There an Epidemic of Fake Service Dogs?

In order to gain access to public places such as restaurants and hotels with their pets a number of people are purchasing service dog vests and meaningless assistance dog identification cards and certificates from commercial online service dog registries. These do not require that the dog be trained nor that the person have a disability.

When Friends Take Sides After a Breakup

After a breakup—whether it’s one between friends or lovers—it’s not unusual for friends of the twosome to take sides.

Net Losses

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on April 14, 2015 in In Excess
A number of market research reports have indicated that many office employees spend at least one hour of their day at work on various non-work activities (e.g., booking holidays, shopping online, posting messages on social networking sites, playing online games, etc.) and costs businesses millions of dollars a year. But what can be done to prevent it?

Heisenberg Capacitor

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on April 13, 2015 in One Among Many
Here’s Part III of my effort to strike a blow for hedonism by nullifying Nozick’s experience machine. Reality as it is is good enough. Enjoy it.