From ancient byways to modern highways, glimpses of faith are everywhere...

Friday, October 11, 2013

Psychological contagion: Watch where you sit

Vincent's Chair     (by Vincent Van Gogh)
Whether or not there's really something to it, people seem to "catch" success or failure from objects used by those they perceive to be "winners" or "losers."

Therefore, if you're sitting in a fancy restaurant and the waiter happens to mention that Magic Johnson sat in that very seat just last week, you might suddenly feel far more capable of paying the bill.  Conversely, if he adds that the seat was also once occupied by Charles Manson, you might then find yourself too disgusted to eat.

Markham Heid of Men's Health recently reported on research from Loyola University which indicates that "close contact with someone you see as immoral or unsuccessful can taint how you feel about yourself."  The good news is that it also works in reverse. If someone lends you their "lucky shirt," you might find your own "luck" to be suddenly improved.

The Loyola researchers explained that "dozens of experiments have shown this type of 'magical thinking' is widespread."  So whether or not you think this is all a bunch of hooey, you might want to hesitate before moving into the office (no matter how impressive) of someone who was just fired.


Copyright October 11, 2013 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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