Successful People’s Struggles Can Motivate You

What do Galileo, Newton, and Einstein have in common? No, not that they were brilliant scientists with ridiculously long lists of achievements. If you are a struggling physics student, this fact will probably discourage you further. However, research has shown that if you focus on another commonality among them—that they have struggled to make important discoveries—you will soon realise that even geniuses work hard and will eventually understand their previously impenetrable theories. So, start reading biographies and learn how your heroes have struggled. Continue reading


Why What You Wear Matters So Much

Want to be more meticulous instantly? Slip on a lab coat. Research has found that what you wear can have subtle effects on how you think and behave. Lab coats are often associated with scientists and doctors who are noted for their attentiveness and carefulness, and putting on such a coat will almost magically endow you with these positive qualities. Next time, beware of what you wear and the positive or negative attributes associated with your clothes—don’t try to study for a test in your pyjamas. Continue reading

Travelling In The Same Direction Increases Liking

Not too satisfied with your relationship with your spouse? The direction of travel when commuting to work could be the culprit. Research has found that couples were more satisfied with their relationship when they travelled to work in the same direction, and this was regardless of whether they left for work at the same time. So consider this when buying a house with your partner in the future. Continue reading

Self-Distancing Reduces Aggression

Someone has just boiled your blood. How do you regain composure? We tend to dwell on and imagine everything happening to ourselves again. Unfortunately, this will only intensify negative feelings. But luckily, psychologists have found a simple trick to help you regain self-control in the heat of the moment—imagine yourself as a fly on the wall, visualise and replay the conflict unfold from a distance from a third-person perspective. Continue reading

Music Preferences Can Reveal Personalities

A new friend of yours likes jazz and you think that he or she is intellectual as a result. Sometimes, this could be a stereotype, but this is generally an accurate inference. Research has found that newly acquainted people like to talk about music because the type of music we like say a lot about ourselves. Most importantly, we are fairly competent at inferring other people’s personalities from their music preferences. So what music do you like? Continue reading

Train Self-Control Like A Muscle

Self-control is a muscle, and this more than a metaphor. Studies have consistently demonstrated that practising the right kinds of self-control tasks for merely two weeks can increase your overall self-control, like the way strength training increases the size of your muscles. Seemingly trivial tasks like opening the door with your non-dominant hand and telling yourself to maintain a good posture can actually help tackle more daunting willpower challenges! Continue reading

Sweet Foods Really Make Us Sweeter

Need help? You’ll probably find it in a Häagen-Dazs store. Research has found that eating sweet foods makes us more agreeable and helpful. Also, agreeable people tend to prefer sweet foods more. These suggest that sweet-toothed people in that store, especially those already savouring their ice creams, must be especially sweet and helpful. Continue reading