Emotional Contagion is Catchy!

Emotional Contagion is infectious – emotional states are transmitted from person to person at astonishing speeds. As a performance hypnotist I know that one volunteer giggling uncontrollably can, and in a matter of seconds, infect the entire group, rendering the induction sterile. Infectious giggling I thought I had left behind at school, although I can…MORE

How TV Influences Our Emotions

Good news for anyone who feels guilty about binge-watching box sets! Watching TV dramas can boost your emotional intelligence. Researchers from the University of Oklahoma have discovered that watching well made and well-written high quality fictional shows like Mad Men or Boston Legal can improve our ability to read other’s emotions. In these days of…MORE

Yawn, and the world yawns with you!

Yawn, cough, sneeze, itch – all these things are contagious. The imitation game is part of the human condition. The information in our genetic code is designed to copy itself, as is every cell in our bodies. New-born babies copy their mother’s smile, children copy their parents, teenagers mimic their role-models, NLP aficionados model their…MORE

It’s All About the Image

When I was a lad, I remember the days when all comedians wore evening dress. Actually, most of them wore velvet jackets and frilly shirts with unfeasibly large purple velvet bow ties.  Strange but true! Then came the age of the alternative stand-up. Jeans and t-shirts became the rage. Comedians decided that they were no…MORE

Subliminal Messaging

September 12 1957, Fort Lee, New Jersey: a market researcher by the name of James M. Vicary decides to carry out a unique and ground-breaking experiment in which an unsuspecting cinema audience is bombarded with subliminal messages: “Eat popcorn, drink Coca Cola” appears on the screen for three milliseconds. The result was that sales of…MORE

Good News for the Placebo

The placebo effect is as old as the healing professions themselves. The idea that you will get better because you believe you will get better is a very powerful one, and one that doubtless the pharmaceutical companies would like to have suppressed if they had the chance. But there is powerful new research that seems…MORE