Study Finds Looking At Adorable Animals Improves ProductivityFirstly: You have to be fucking kidding me? Secondly this study is legit and was conducted at Japan’s Hiroshima University to see the effects of seeing cute animals on productivity, because you know, why not?The study itself consisted of two groups of people who had to conduct a task (specifically playing a game of Operation, because science!). One group was exposed to regular “pleasant” images such as food while the other was exposed to pictures of adorable animals. Interestingly the performance of the second group increased by 44%, although it also took them %12 longer. The researchers went on to conclude, and I quote: “Kawaii things not only make us happier, but also affect our behavior”.You cannot make this stuff up.Source

Study Finds Looking At Adorable Animals Improves Productivity

Firstly: You have to be fucking kidding me? Secondly this study is legit and was conducted at Japan’s Hiroshima University to see the effects of seeing cute animals on productivity, because you know, why not?

The study itself consisted of two groups of people who had to conduct a task (specifically playing a game of Operation, because science!). One group was exposed to regular “pleasant” images such as food while the other was exposed to pictures of adorable animals. Interestingly the performance of the second group increased by 44%, although it also took them %12 longer. The researchers went on to conclude, and I quote: “Kawaii things not only make us happier, but also affect our behavior”.

You cannot make this stuff up.

Source

Spiders Are Bigger Than They SeemArachnophobia, or the irrational fear of spiders, is something that affects 50% of women and 10% of men. But it seems this isn’t the only thing blown out of proportion. A recent study has shown that people who are afraid of spiders actually rate spiders as much bigger than they really are, even trebling the length. The study was conducted by taking arachnophobes who have undergone therapy and getting them to interact with a range of spiders for a few minutes. After this session the human participants were made to fill out a questionnaire rating their level of distress and also asked to draw a line indicated how long they perceived the spider. The results showed a strong correlation between level of distress and exaggerated length of their 8 legged friend with on average the most fearful drawing lines 50% longer than those of the least fearful.Image

Spiders Are Bigger Than They Seem

Arachnophobia, or the irrational fear of spiders, is something that affects 50% of women and 10% of men. But it seems this isn’t the only thing blown out of proportion. A recent study has shown that people who are afraid of spiders actually rate spiders as much bigger than they really are, even trebling the length. The study was conducted by taking arachnophobes who have undergone therapy and getting them to interact with a range of spiders for a few minutes. After this session the human participants were made to fill out a questionnaire rating their level of distress and also asked to draw a line indicated how long they perceived the spider. The results showed a strong correlation between level of distress and exaggerated length of their 8 legged friend with on average the most fearful drawing lines 50% longer than those of the least fearful.

Image

SynesthesiaFirst off, let me dedicate this post to all the synesthetes that follow me and who I follow (it seems a rather high proportion).
Synesthesia comes from the Greek words syn and aisthēsis which mean together and perception respectively. Synesthesia is characterized by having multiple, unusual sensations in response to stimuli. A person with synesthesia may associate a number or a letter with a specific colour. This type of synesthesia is called grapheme-color synesthesia and is the most common. For example the letter 7 may be dark red or L could be teal. However other forms of synesthesia exist such as having sound perceived as a smell or even visual cues given personality traits. 1 in 23 people are thought to have synesthesia, with a strong (but not yet understood) link within families.

Synesthesia

First off, let me dedicate this post to all the synesthetes that follow me and who I follow (it seems a rather high proportion).

Synesthesia comes from the Greek words syn and aisthēsis which mean together and perception respectively. Synesthesia is characterized by having multiple, unusual sensations in response to stimuli. A person with synesthesia may associate a number or a letter with a specific colour. This type of synesthesia is called grapheme-color synesthesia and is the most common. For example the letter 7 may be dark red or L could be teal. However other forms of synesthesia exist such as having sound perceived as a smell or even visual cues given personality traits. 1 in 23 people are thought to have synesthesia, with a strong (but not yet understood) link within families.

Ever Forget Why You Walked Into A Room?Turns out the culprit to blame is in fact doorways. It’s thought that the brain associates various thoughts and activities with the environment they were thought in and as soon as you pass through a threshold that all goes out the window as your brain files that information in relation to the previous room. At least these are the findings in a recent study that got participants to pick an item on one table and exchange it with an item on another table. The experiment was divided into two groups, one with a doorway in the way and one without. Funnily enough it was found that participants were more likely to forget what they were doing with only the addition of a doorway.

Ever Forget Why You Walked Into A Room?

Turns out the culprit to blame is in fact doorways. It’s thought that the brain associates various thoughts and activities with the environment they were thought in and as soon as you pass through a threshold that all goes out the window as your brain files that information in relation to the previous room. At least these are the findings in a recent study that got participants to pick an item on one table and exchange it with an item on another table. The experiment was divided into two groups, one with a doorway in the way and one without. Funnily enough it was found that participants were more likely to forget what they were doing with only the addition of a doorway.

Serotonin: The Happiness ChemicalIf there’s one thing you enjoy (and really there is) it’s a good dose of serotonin right between your synapses. Serotonin is typically known as the chemical that keeps you happy and is the target for most antidepressants whose role is to keep it lingering in your brain for longer. As such it’s a good idea to eat lots foods such as bananas are turkey which are rich in tryptophan, the precursor molecule for serotonin.
However serotonin has a few other roles to play, in fact 90% of serotonin present in your body is found in intestinal cells and regulates intestinal movements. A quality that is exploited by harmful bacteria (and many seeds) who secrete serotonin to trigger diarrhea. Serotonin is also the component of insect bites that causes pain but thankfully is also key in blood clotting.

Serotonin: The Happiness Chemical

If there’s one thing you enjoy (and really there is) it’s a good dose of serotonin right between your synapses. Serotonin is typically known as the chemical that keeps you happy and is the target for most antidepressants whose role is to keep it lingering in your brain for longer. As such it’s a good idea to eat lots foods such as bananas are turkey which are rich in tryptophan, the precursor molecule for serotonin.

However serotonin has a few other roles to play, in fact 90% of serotonin present in your body is found in intestinal cells and regulates intestinal movements. A quality that is exploited by harmful bacteria (and many seeds) who secrete serotonin to trigger diarrhea. Serotonin is also the component of insect bites that causes pain but thankfully is also key in blood clotting.

This graph is showing the relationship between perceived levels of pain (of electric shock) when women are exposed to three sets of images, pictures of long-term relationship partners, pictures of strangers and finally pictures of inanimate objects.

This graph is showing the relationship between perceived levels of pain (of electric shock) when women are exposed to three sets of images, pictures of long-term relationship partners, pictures of strangers and finally pictures of inanimate objects.

Do you think that autism could be a result of certain environmental factors?

Or at the very least autistic symptoms. It’s my understanding (Limited understanding) that stresses can result in severe introversion, but those stresses are often very potent stimuli. Perhaps less severe environmental and social factors could contribute to mannerisms that could fall into the less severe end of the autism spectrum.

Help me psychologists!

The mirror test is a psychological experiment designed to detect self awareness. The rules are fairly basic: an animal is simply placed in front of a mirror and the results are recorded. A “pass” may simply include making faces at the mirror, such as many humans typically do and orangutans. A more definite experiment includes marking an animal’s body with two spots, one as the actual experiment and one as a control. Ideally it is done so that the experimental spot can only be viewed with a mirror, therefore if the animal reacts to the spot when seeing it on it’s reflection it can be determined that the animal has some self-awareness. Animals that have passed the test are great apes, bottle-nose dolphins, elephants, orcas and European magpies. Animals that have failed include human children under the age of 18 months and dogs.

The mirror test is a psychological experiment designed to detect self awareness. The rules are fairly basic: an animal is simply placed in front of a mirror and the results are recorded. A “pass” may simply include making faces at the mirror, such as many humans typically do and orangutans. A more definite experiment includes marking an animal’s body with two spots, one as the actual experiment and one as a control. Ideally it is done so that the experimental spot can only be viewed with a mirror, therefore if the animal reacts to the spot when seeing it on it’s reflection it can be determined that the animal has some self-awareness. Animals that have passed the test are great apes, bottle-nose dolphins, elephants, orcas and European magpies. Animals that have failed include human children under the age of 18 months and dogs.