3 Smart Things: Work and Creativity

1. A new study suggests that creativity outside of work can enhance job performance

2. Creative activities outside of work seem to directly enhance the ability of employees to problem solve and help others on the job

3. Researchers suggest organizations can encourage employees to pursue creative hobbies outside of work by sponsoring contests and offering discounts for supplies

Reference:Kevin J. Eschleman, Jamie Madsen, Gene Alarcon, Alex Barelka. Benefiting from activity:  positive relationships between creative activity,recovery experiences, and performance-related outcomes. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 2014

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Sleep Position & Relationships

1. Forty-two percent of couples sleep back to back while 31% sleep facing the same direction and only 4% spend the night facing each other

2. Ninety-four percent of couples who physically touch during sleeping are happy in their relationship while only 68% of couples who don’t touch are happy

3. Eighty-six percent of couples who sleep less than an inch apart from each other are happy, while only 66% of those who sleep more than 30 inches apart are happy

Source: University of Hertfordshire

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Eye Contact & Trust

1. Consumers are 16% more likely to trust a brand of cereal when the characters on the boxes look them straight in the eye, according to researchers from Cornell University

2. Interestingly, the gaze of characters on children’s cereal boxes is at a downward angle, correcting for their height

3. Characters on adult cereal boxes look straight ahead

Source: Cornell University

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Smoking and Motivation

1. New research suggests ads with messages about “why” to stop smoking can influence a smoker to quit within a month

2. However, there is no evidence that ads with messages about “how” to stop smoking influence behavior

3. Researchers argue that “why” ads are more effective because they show graphic portrayals of the health consequences of smoking

Source: The Impact of Cessation Media Messages on Cessation-Related Outcomes: Results From a National Experiment of Smokers. American Journal of Health Promotion, 2014

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Laughter and Perception

 1. A new study suggests brains can tell the difference between genuine and fake laughter

2. When people hear a fake laugh, they activate a part of their brain associated with trying to understand the emotional and mental state of others

3. The people who are best able to tell the difference between a genuine and fake laugh also activate parts of their brain engaged in movement and sensation—suggesting that people “try out” how a laugh would feel to them to understand its meaning

Source: Individual Differences in Laughter Perception Reveal Roles for Mentalizing and Sensorimotor Systems in the Evaluation of Emotional Authenticity. Cerebral Cortex, 2013

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Performance and Work Environment

1. Attempts to change the social or physical workplace environment do have positive effects on work-related outcomes

2. Changes to the social environment seem to lead to better work performance

3. Changes in the physical environment seem to help workers concentrate

Source: Effectiveness of a Combined Social and Physical Environmental Intervention on Presenteeism, Absenteeism, Work Performance, and Work Engagement in Office Employees. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 2014

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Parenting and Money

1. A new study suggests that when parents think about money, they feel like their parenting is less meaningful

2. Research suggests that to increase levels of fulfillment, parents should keep parenting activities and money-making activities as separate as possible

3. This is one of a series of recent findings about parenting and happiness. For instance, recent research has shown that fathers tend to be happier than men without children, but mothers are not happier than women without children

Source: Society for Personality and Social Psychology. “Another reason to not mix work, family: Money makes parenting less meaningful, study suggests.”

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Matchmaking and Happiness

1. According to researchers at Harvard and Duke, matchmaking may make the matchmaker happier than the person he or she matches

2. Matchmakers are happiest when they match people who likely would not have met otherwise

3. Matchmakers may gain satisfaction from having the social acumen to recognize a social link that others have not

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

3 Smart Things: Intuition and Ability

1. New research suggests that very simple numerical exercises (like determining how many pencils are in each pile of pencils) can significantly improve children’s math solving ability

2. In the study, first graders who estimated the amount of objects in a pile did approximately a grade better on a subsequent test than the control group

3. The study is one of the first to demonstrate how cultivating intuition in children can lead to enhanced mathematical performance

Source: Daniel C. Hyde, Saeeda Khanum, Elizabeth S. Spelke. Brief non-symbolic, approximate number practice enhances subsequent exact symbolic arithmetic in children. Cognition, 2014

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay

Some rules of thumb I live by

1. People are the key to professional, personal and social success
2. Relationships are a choice
3. Articulate what you want
4. Engage with people in mutual support for mutual success
5. Generosity and service to others is the starting point of outreach
6. Keep a lifeline group to hold you accountable
7. Be willing to regularly take a vulnerable look at yourself
8. Make a plan to reach out to others
9. Relationships aren’t a set of activities; they are a lifestyle
10. You have a duty to be a teacher, not just a pupil

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Mixx
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Blogplay