Adults who struggle as kids often turn out smarter than those who had stable, privileged upbringings and a private education. It’s a fact of life – some kids come from dysfunctional families or broken homes. Some of them played truant from school, they got into bad ways, they shoplifted and they committed crime to get…MORE

The window to the soul

Forget body language – the real key to communication is in the eyes. Your eyes give away information about mental states such as attention, boredom, attraction and intention. But your pupils give away more. Pupil dilation varies according to the amount of light entering the eye – the less light, the more the pupil dilates…MORE

Birds of a feather…

They say that like attracts like. That’s why cliques form at school, at university, at work, and at parties. Psychologists from the University of Georgia have found this unwritten rule also applies to people with personality disorders, and that includes psychopaths and narcissists. Dysfunctional people are more likely to make friends with, or even get…MORE

Food and sensory perception

Music can enhance – or ruin – the dining experience… But choosing the right music can also enhance sales! Researchers from HUI Research, a research-based consulting firm in Stockholm, have conducted the largest ever study of the influence of background music in restaurants. Led by Professor Sven-Olov Daunfeldt, the researchers found that the right ambient…MORE

Slot machine hypnosis

Welcome to the Slot Machine Zone… It’s like the Twilight Zone where space-time is suspended and it’s impossible to escape. Gamblers can fall into a hypnotic state without realising it. The problem is especially acute with problem gamblers who may be susceptible to suggestion. The tricks that Casino operators use to encourage people to gamble…MORE

Them bones, them bones, them lazy bones…

Why our brains make us follow the path of least resistance. The urge to find the easiest way of doing things with the least amount of effort is one of the reasons human beings have been so inventive. Take the wheel for instance – how much backbreaking work has that simple invention made easier? The…MORE

Creative people are better connected

The way our brains are wired could provide the key to understanding the way we think. A talent for innovation, creativity, imagination, originality, and ingenuity is the result of how the two sides of your brain are able to talk to each other. If you can think outside the box, then you’re very likely to…MORE

Do leopards change their spots?

Scientists at the University of Edinburgh have just completed the longest-ever study of human personality. Guess what… you’re a completely different person in your seventies than you were in your teens. It’s always been thought that your personality is fixed by the time you reach your late teens. But scientists at the University of Edinburgh…MORE

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Franklin D. Roosevelt. All phobias are just tricks of the imagination. While it’s good to have a healthy respect for dangerous animals or threatening situations, you have a right not to be frightened. If you suffer from a phobia, you will no doubt recognise the…MORE

No more Mr nice guy

Does being nice to people really make us happier? Not always. Most companies train their staff to smile and be polite to customers, even when customers are rude, ungrateful, surly, demanding and awkward. But a two-year research programme carried out by the University of Frankfurt am Main proved beyond doubt that when people suppress their…MORE