Children Can Learn Aggressive Behavior by Watching and Imitating It

blue boxing gloves
Image by Pixabay / CC 0

It’s no secret that children don’t just do what they’re told to. And instead, they learn a lot by watching and imitating others.

That’s where the whole ideal of a “role model” stems from. The term was originally coined by the late sociologist Robert Merton. (Incidentally, Merton also coined the term “self-fulfilling prophecy”  » Read more

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Going Vigilante: When You’re Fully Convinced Your Beliefs Are Vastly Superior to Everyone Else’s

the car from Dukes of Hazzard
Image by Engyles / CC BY

Have you ever known someone who really seemed fully convinced that their beliefs were vastly superior to everyone around them? And who not only felt that way but also felt a need to run around making sure to correct everyone?

Someone who seemed completely unable to tolerate the reality that it might be acceptable for other people to have different beliefs than them?  » Read more

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Parents Who Lie to Their Children Raise Children Who Lie to Them

"LIAR!" written backward on a window
Image by Satish Krishnamurthy / CC BY

“Do as I say, not as I do.”

It’s been shown countless times that children learn a lot by observing what those around them do and imitating that.

Even if those same examples caution them against performing the behaviors, actions speak louder than words. And they’re more likely to mimic what they see than to follow instructions that conflict with the actions of those cautioning them.  » Read more

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Huh. Apparently Optimists Live Longer.

a picture of a smiling sun drawn on a blackboard
Image by Pixabay / CC 0

As I’ve written before, research has shown that the most resilient people aren’t always positive. “Always” is the key term here. A generally positive outlook is helpful in responding well to life’s challenges; the important point is that while resilient people are generally optimistic they also acknowledge reality.

There’s no amount of positive thinking that’ll let you just gloss over the bad parts and have you rebounding easily from them in a meaningful way.  » Read more

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The IKEA Effect: We Love Things More That We Personally Built

the outside of an IKEA store viewed from the parking lot. A parking lot marker reading "A" can also be seen in the shot.
Image by Sam Greenhalgh / CC BY

By now, practically everyone has heard of IKEA, thanks to their increasingly expanding set of stores as well as Jonathan Coulton’s excellent tribute song to them. (“Billy the bookcase says hello” by the way.) And anyone who has any firsthand experience with IKEA knows that while they offer timeless modernist style at scandalous prices, it also comes with a time commitment.  » Read more

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