Power and Pronouns

Have you heard that the frequent use of ‘I’ indicates narcissism?  It’s a common misconception rebuffed in recent studies conducted at the University of Texas at Austin by James W. Pennebaker.  Pennebaker found through behavioral experiments and Twitter analysis that the use of ‘I’ can denote duplicity and a sense of inferiority.  Those who used ‘we’ more often in the experiments tended to have the power in the relationships.

>> What Saying ‘I’ Says About You <<

 

– Sandra

A Storm is Brewing

I recently read Dan Brown’s Inferno which revolves around the theme of over-population and the threat it presents to future generations. This article  talks about another future threat–global warming and the increasing number of natural disasters. The facts presented in this article about the increase in natural disasters in the  future are not surprising but it is interesting to see how unprepared we are to face the impending doom.

I think the increase in natural disasters may just be nature’s way of posing its own solution to the aforementioned problem of overpopulation. Take a look at the article to see if you agree, and read Inferno to see how Dan Brown’s characters find a solution to this problem in the novel.

>>Climate Change Could Make Hurricanes Stronger—and More Frequent <<

-Monisha

7 Minutes to a New You

Have you been spending hours on the treadmill to slim down to that bangin’ beach bod?  Are you cutting back on dining out to pay for that gym with every kind of weight machine imaginable?  Good news: research shows that you can change your body with only a chair and a wall in 7 minutes per day.

Scientists at McMaster University in Ontario say the following high-intensity workout (comprised of a steady succession of jumping jacks, wall sits, push ups, crunches, chair steps, squats, tricep dips, planks, high knees, lunges, push up rotations and side planks) causes approximately the same change on a cellular level as hours of running or biking.  Really?!

>> The Scientific 7-Minute Workout <<

I am doing this.

– Sandra

Political Attraction

>> I Love Your Ballot, Baby: Members of Your Own Political Party Are More Beautiful <<

We’ve all been there – we’re hanging out in an otherwise innocuous group, and, suddenly, someone drops the politics card.  And then it all goes INSANE.  Tensions run high, thinly veiled insults are thrown like gang signs in south central LA, friendships are dissolved, etc.  Well, apparently political leanings don’t just influence your views; it can even make potential love interests more or less attractive!  A study conducted by a political economist at Stanford Business School showed that subjects’ attractions to online dating profiles were influenced – in this order – by the following: religion (50%), ethnicity (16.6%%), education (10.6%) and political partisanship (9.5%).  Basically, political affiliation has almost the same weight in determining someone’s appeal as his/her education levels.

– Sandra

Memory and Aging

So it’s common knowledge that the elderly, as they age, are plagued by deteriorating memory.  But this isn’t just because their bodies are failing.  It’s because they’re not able to get adequate amounts of restful sleep!

>> Sleep Deprivation May Be Behind Memory Loss in Elderly << 

Scientists at UC Berkeley conducted surveys where they tested subjects of all ages on memory retention and then tested them again after a night of sleep.  While most of the subjects performed on par with one another before sleeping, the elderly performed much more poorly afterwards.  So seniors aren’t actually worse at remembering; their brains are actually impaired by the inability to process new memories brought on by lack of restful sleep!

So for those of us who are not getting adequate amounts of deep sleep, we’re basically performing at the cognitive level of senior citizens.

– Sandra