Psychology Around the Net: August 5, 2017

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I have lots of goodies for you today, sweet readers!

This week’s Psychology Around the Net takes a look at how smartphones negatively impact the “iGen” mental health, why marijuana users have a more dampened stress response than do non-users, how your name can mold your physical appearance (say what?!), and more.

Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation? According to Jean M. Twenge, who’s researched generational differences for more than two decades, members of the “iGen” (those born between 1995 and 2012 and who don’t remember a time before the internet existed) are being shaped by smartphones and social media and it’s not boding well for their mental health. Says Twenge, “It’s not an exaggeration to describe iGen as being on the brink of the worst mental-health crisis in decades. Much of this deterioration can be traced to their phones.”

Psychology Magazines Are Full of Nonsense: Yikes.

The Science and Psychology of Why Videos Go Viral: Psychologists have been trying to figure out what makes something “go viral,” but according to marketing professor Jonah Berger it all boils down to STEPPS, a mnemonic that breaks down the six reasons why something takes off like wildfire.

Believing the Future Will Be Favorable May Prevent Action: According to findings from a recent series of six studies, people tend to believe others will eventually come around to their point of view, a belief that can shed light on political polarization — and its causes and consequences — we’re experiencing today.

Long-Term Marijuana Users Show Dampened Stress Response: By measuring salivary levels of cortisol (the stress hormone), researchers from Washington State University in Pullman have found that long-term marijuana users have a blunted stress response when compared with non-users.

Your Name May Literally Change Your Physical Appearance: A recent study describes how people can match can match names to the faces of strangers with “surprising accuracy,” and that a child’s first name can influence their self-perception and even the development of their physical appearance due to the positive or negative stereotypes associated with that name.

August 5, 2017 at 06:36AM

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