People who feel they deserve success are among those most likely to fail when challenges arise, research from New Zealand has revealed.
“People who believe that they don’t need to work for good grades – that they are just entitled to them by right – are annoying, but there wasn’t any evidence before now that it’s actually a self-destructive strategy,” says study co-author Professor Jamin Halberstadt, at the University of Ontago in New Zealand.
The study also supports the notion that people who feel excessively entitled believe that others are responsible for their success or failure, and are less motivated to put in extra effort when required.
“When an entitled person encounters obstacles to achieving an outcome, they feel like they shouldn’t have to work for it,” Jamin says. “In fact, you should see a challenge as evidence that you need to work harder.”
Nowadays, we lavish praise on our children. Praise, self-confidence and academic performance, it is commonly believed, rise and fall together. But current research suggests otherwise — over the past decade, a number of studies on self-esteem have come to the conclusion that praising a child as ‘clever’ may not help her at school. In fact, it might cause her to under-perform. Often a child will react to praise by quitting — why make a new drawing if you have already made ‘the best’? Or a child may simply repeat the same work — why draw something new, or in a new way, if the old way always gets applause?
Where the inspirational figure is selected for us, and the gap between their life and ours is too great, the effect is not one of encouragement but of disillusionment - especially if their story is told in terms of personal qualities like bravery or persistence.
Knowing a famous person has the same impairment as you can be reassuring, but only in the vague way that hearing of a successful distant relative is reassuring.
Most of us will never scale Everest, compete for our country at sports or have a showbiz career. This doesn’t mean we’ve failed.
For BBC’s Mental Health Awareness Week, Mark Brownquestions the value of glorifying role models who share our own disabilities and pathologies.
A flipside of the same coin to consider is the perilous “tortured genius” myth of creativity, which implies that depression, addiction, and other mental health issues that plagued some successful creators were central to their genius. The human antidotes to this mythology are worthy role models.
Short sleep duration and decreased sleep quality are emerging risk factors for obesity and its associated morbidities. Chronotype, an attribute that reflects individual preferences in the timing of sleep and other behaviors, is a continuum from morningness to eveningness. The importance of chronotype in relation to obesity is mostly unknown. Evening types tend to have unhealthy eating habits and suffer from psychological problems more frequently than Morning types, thus we hypothesized that eveningness may affect health parameters in a cohort of obese individuals reporting sleeping less than 6.5 hours per night.
Scientists have another name for failure: data. Expecting that your first stab at a big project will succeed is not only unrealistic, but a bit lazy. We should consider ourselves “tinkering scientists” on our quest to create, with each failure just another data point.
Price is a public matter — a negotiation between supply and demand. A thing’s price is set in competition. So the price of a car is determined by how much some people want it, how much they are willing to pay, and how ready the manufacturer is to sell. It’s a public activity: lots of people are involved in the process, but your voice is almost never important in setting the price.
Value, on the other hand, is a personal, ethical and aesthetic judgment — assigned finally by individuals, and founded on their perceptiveness, wisdom and character.
Troubles are urgent. They ask for direct action. … By contrast, worries often say more about the worrier than about the world. … So, addressing money worries should be quite different from dealing with money troubles. To address our worries we have to give attention to the pattern of thinking (ideology) and to the scheme of values (culture) as these are played out in our own individual, private existences.
The best use of money as a motivator is to pay people enough to take the issue of money off the table: Pay people enough so that they’re not thinking about money and they’re thinking about the work. Once you do that, it turns out there are three factors that the science shows lead to better performance, not to mention personal satisfaction: autonomy, mastery, and purpose.
What the Internet is doing to our brains – a charming animation based on Nicholas Carr’s rather reductionist, techno-dystopian book The Shallows. For a more dimensional look at how digital culture is affecting cognition, see this.