Essential Reads

Seven Tips for Kissing Like You Mean It

How to make the most of making out.

How to Pray for an Atheist

The etiquette of unsolicited prayers

Why Narcissists Try to Make You Feel Bad About Yourself

A narcissist’s insults can get to you until you consider the source

The Secret to Controlling Other People

What do you really want? And what will you do to get it?

Recent Posts on Social Life

9 Things Only Passive-Aggressive People Do

While most people take the passive-aggressive approach once in a while, for some people manipulation and indirect communication become a way of life.

8 Tips for Helping Kids Cope with Friendship Disappointments

How do you help your child learn from a friendship disappointment?

Deal or No Deal? Exploring Relationship Deal Breakers

What are the turn-ons and what are the turn-offs when you scan the personal ads? What happens when the "dream date" turns into a "worst case scenario"?

Getting Along With Others: Parenting for Social Intelligence

Children and teens can experience social challenges at any point during the school year. Social context—including opportunities for interaction and collaboration with others—makes an enormous difference in what and how much children learn, and how quickly that happens. Here are eight practical tips for parents to help kids build positive relationships.

What Would YOU Have Done in Milgram’s Experiment?

When Stanley Milgram studied the nature of human obedience, he shocked the world. Most people today say that they personally would never have obeyed an authority figure to the point of danger. But what they say may bear little resemblance to what they would actually do.

Avoiding Ashley Madison

By Wendy L. Patrick Ph.D. on September 02, 2015 in Why Bad Looks Good
You cannot "spot" a cheater, but you may be able to "detect" one if you know what to look for and where to look.

Political Correctness Is Bad, When Applied Incorrectly

By Noam Shpancer Ph.D. on September 02, 2015 in Insight Therapy
Trigger Warning: This piece may deeply frustrate those who feast on political correctness hysteria

How to Spot When Someone is Lying to You

But before we are too quick to judge those in the headlines who find themselves accused of lying, the psychological research indicates that ordinary people tell an average of 1.5 lies a day, but this rate can climb dramatically because how likely you are to deceive depends a lot on the situation you find yourself in.

Insight Into Bias

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on September 01, 2015 in One Among Many
Psychologists (and you) love a tale of two minds. Here’s one about how people self-enhance (or efface) and how they know that they do.

Which Hair Color Induces the Strongest Physical Attraction?

Startling new psychological research challenges previous thinking that hair color is merely about personal preference. Instead a massive consensus appears to exist on which hair color is preferred, and there also appears to be such severe prejudice associated with the tint of your locks, this is possibly as harsh as racial discrimination.

How Do People’s Values Change as They Get Older?

By Art Markman Ph.D. on September 01, 2015 in Ulterior Motives
At any given moment in your life, you have a set of values that guide your actions at an abstract level. As an academic psychologist, for example, I value knowledge, and spend a lot of time pursuing it. Success has also been a value for me, and so I have devoted time to my career. My values are not shared by everyone.

Making Your Labor Day Party a Success

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on September 01, 2015 in How To Do Life
Your party will be more successful if you consider psychological as well as logistical matters.

4 Ways to Use Your Words to Build Romance

It is often hard to know how to talk to a potential romantic partner, date, or sexy stranger. What can you say to help build an emotional connection and get them to pick you? According to speed dating research, there are a few tips that can make even four minutes of conversation enough time to get someone to bond, connect, and click. Read on to find out how...

Seven Tips for Kissing Like You Mean It

By Jennifer Haupt on August 31, 2015 in One True Thing
My husband of 25 years and I recently attended Kissing School, the brainchild of Seattle psychotherapist Cherie Byrd. Here's what we learned after seven hours of smoothing.

3 Ways Your Beliefs Can Shape Your Reality

By Juliana Breines Ph.D. on August 30, 2015 in In Love and War
Beliefs may not single-handedly determine your physical health, financial status, and chances at finding love, as some claim, but they are powerful nonetheless.

How to Pray for an Atheist

By David Niose on August 30, 2015 in Our Humanity, Naturally
Nonbelievers don't want prayers, but they often get them anyway. What's the etiquette of unsolicited prayers? And is it changing as the nonreligious demographic grows?

The Psychology of Gestures

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on August 29, 2015 in A Sideways View
Think of a rude gesture, and when you last used it. Think of a famous TV star and their peculiar and very personal gestures. What information are these gestures conveying? What can we read into head, hand and foot movements?

Sleep, Dreams, and Income Inequality

Low-income people tend to have worse sleep, and fewer lucid dreams, than do high-income people. Those are some of the findings from a new demographic survey of the sleep and dream patterns of American adults.

Mapping Your Position in Cultural Space

This blog offers a way to get a larger perspective on one's position in social space.

We need a folksy free will

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on August 27, 2015 in One Among Many
Andrew Monroe, who is an expert on moral psychology and folk beliefs about free will responds to an earlier post on 'Free Will Depletion.'

Who Do You Find Attractive? It All Depends on This.

Take a look at your standards for a potential partner. Now look again: they might be less stable than you think.

Stereotypical Gender Differences in Sexuality Are Crumbling

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on August 27, 2015 in The Human Beast
Marked differences between male and female sexuality used to be supported by solid evidence around the globe. The trouble is that such distinctions are getting blurred in developed countries.

Making Sense of Common Sense

By Alain Samson Ph.D. on August 27, 2015 in Consumed
How understanding the taken-for-granted can enrich behavioral science

Killing Academia: The Death of America's Colleges

Wake up, America! Your children are no longer being taught by professors.

A Game of Cards: A Gateway to Social Literacy

By Bernard L. De Koven on August 27, 2015 in On Having Fun
It becomes a better game, not because of the particular rules that you’re playing it by, but because you’ve played it so many different ways that it becomes a celebration of a growing bond between each and all members of the community.

Loving Competition

By Bernard L. De Koven on August 26, 2015 in On Having Fun
Of all the spaces in which we find each other, this space, the space between, the moment lightly held, where we face each other freely, is where the play is deepest.

Language Learning in a Multilingual Country

What is everyday interaction like in communities where everyone speaks several languages? What language learning strategies do they use? What assumptions do they make about language learning? Dr. Leslie C. Moore answers questions about the two multilingual communities in northern Cameroon where she did her research and about her own language learning in the field.

Why Narcissists Try to Make You Feel Bad About Yourself

It’s never pleasant to be the target of an insult. However, before you let an insulting remark get the better of you, stop and consider who’s doing the insulting. It’s likely that it’s just a narcissist, trying to feel better by making you feel bad.

When Working Shifts Works Against You

By Shelby Harris Psy.D. on August 25, 2015 in The Land of Nod
A discussion of Shift Work Sleep Disorder

Who Is Living with Whom?

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on August 25, 2015 in Living Single
Alongside the well-known increase in the number of people living alone is another very different and less heralded trend – people who are living with all sorts of other people who are not their spouse or romantic partner.