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  • Showing only topics with the tag "psychology". Back to normal view
    1. Talk to me about: Impulse control

      What is your personal impulse control like? Do you have good impulse control overall? Do you have an addictive personality? Where does it fail? Anything you’re particularly proud or ashamed of?

      14 votes
    2. Have you ever met a psychopath?

      For the past month, I have been reading "The Wisdom of Psychopaths" by Kevin Dutton which delves into traits, behaviors, and motivations behind psychopaths. This book isn't just about serial...

      For the past month, I have been reading "The Wisdom of Psychopaths" by Kevin Dutton which delves into traits, behaviors, and motivations behind psychopaths. This book isn't just about serial killers but rather also the "successful" functional psychopaths such as stockbrokers, politicians, and business executives. You can read an excerpt from the book here if interested. A few interesting takeaways that I have had from the book so far are the innate cues that some people have on picking up on psychopathic cues. This is like speaking to someone and getting the heebie-jeebies from them for some reason. Apparently, women are more perceptive to this than men.

      So, I'm curious if you have ever met a person that gave off that vibe, and what in particular gave you that vibe?

      18 votes
    3. Are certain message boards like Tildes, Reddit etc. social engineering?

      The active development of Tildes and the feedback/discussions about features and mechanisms had me thinking. Is the conscious design and moderation of forums for public discourse a manner of...

      The active development of Tildes and the feedback/discussions about features and mechanisms had me thinking. Is the conscious design and moderation of forums for public discourse a manner of social engineering?

      I know the connotation of social engineering is usually negative, as in manipulating people for politics. But it's a double edged sword.

      Most recently I was reading this feedback on removing usernames from link topics and while reading the comments I was thinking of how meta this all is. It's meta-meta-cognition in that we (well, by far the actual developers) are designing the space within which we execute our discourse and thinking. To paraphrase the above example: user identification can bias one's own impulse reaction to content, either to a beneficial or detrimental end, so how do we want this?

      The moderation-influenced scenario is a bit more tricky because it can become too top-heavy, as in one prominent example many of us came from recently... But I think with a balance of direction from the overlords (jk, there is also public input as mentioned) and the chaos of natural public discourse, you could obtain an efficient environment for the exchange of ideas.

      I'm not sure what my stimulating question would be for you all, so just tell me what you think.

      33 votes
    4. What is your first-hand experience with the "Dunning–Kruger effect"?

      In the field of psychology, the Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which people of low ability have illusory superiority and mistakenly assess their cognitive ability as greater than it...

      In the field of psychology, the Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which people of low ability have illusory superiority and mistakenly assess their cognitive ability as greater than it is. The cognitive bias of illusory superiority comes from the inability of low-ability people to recognize their lack of ability. Without the self-awareness of metacognition, low-ability people cannot objectively evaluate their competence or incompetence. (Wikipedia)

      Some of my fellow programmers seem to think the world turns around their knowledge as if there was no valid reasoning whatsoever beyond math and computer science. They seem to think logic (a tool with multiple uses which exists since at least 380 BC) is merely an attribute of computer science. It's not uncommon for them to think they can understand the intricacies of every phenomenon under the sun.

      I have to control myself to avoid countering each of their flawed arguments. To my own detriment, I'm not always able to do so. I feel surrounded by arrogance and cognitive bias, and have to silence my better judgment in order to avoid constant conflict.

      To be clear, I'm not looking for advice, as I already know the "solution", which is no solution. You can't use reason to fight something that is not motivated by reason. I'm posting to know your stories and maybe find some solace in the knowledge that I'm not alone.

      Have you ever had to deal directly with people who grossly inflate their own competence, possibly stretching it to an unrelated field? if so, what's your story?

      20 votes
    5. What are the good ways to deal with situations when a generally good person believes in things like astrology and conspiracy theories?

      Probably I'm not alone in such situation when a good person you know believes in something really harmless but still ridiculous in the depth of your mind. For example, that astrological sign...

      Probably I'm not alone in such situation when a good person you know believes in something really harmless but still ridiculous in the depth of your mind.

      For example, that astrological sign seriously defines compatibility of people, or WTC was demolished intentionally in the US, or GMO is bad because in some experiment rats reportedly stopped reproducing and therefore someone wants to shrink certain human populations by popularizing GMO.

      None of such beliefs actually do something directly harmful but sometimes just the fact people you know believe that is almost disgusting. Any proof would be discarded as an "official", biased one, profitable for those who have money and power.

      What should be done in such a situation? What would you do if your otherwise perfect friend seriously considered Earth flat?

      27 votes
    6. Experiences with aphantasia or what does visualizing look/feel like?

      Aphantasia is a condition where a person is unable to visualize images in their minds eye. If I tell you to think of a red apple, several people will visualize this apple and 'see' it. But those...

      Aphantasia is a condition where a person is unable to visualize images in their minds eye. If I tell you to think of a red apple, several people will visualize this apple and 'see' it. But those (like me) with aphantasia simply can't. Some of us have access to other senses within our mind (hearing, touch, smell, etc), some don't.

      Do you have aphantasia? There's a simple test here.

      In a similar vein, is anybody able to explain what visualizing looks like? Is it just like the sight I get from my eyes? Different?

      17 votes
    7. Lets take a personality test!

      One of my favorite topics in Psychology is personality and there happens to be a very good Five Factor test that is free to the public domain with all 3,000+ items available for download. Some...

      One of my favorite topics in Psychology is personality and there happens to be a very good Five Factor test that is free to the public domain with all 3,000+ items available for download. Some notes about the IPIP NEO-PI:

      Purpose of this On-Line Inventory

      • The primary purpose of this on line inventory is to educate the public about the five factor model of personality.
      • More specifically, the report explains the likely consequences of one's standing on five broad personality domains.
      • These broad domains cover normal differences in personality that should be obvious to people who know you well.
      • Secondarily, this inventory estimates your standing on the 5 broad domains and 30 subdomains of personality.
      • The inventory does not reveal hidden, secret information about you nor does it assess serious psychological disorders.
      • The report is designed to be objective, not pleasing or flattering.
      • Measurement error, misunderstandings, carelessness, and mischievous responding can invalidate the report.
      • If knowledgeable acquaintances disagree with the test results, then the results are wrong.

      Link to the questionnaire:
      https://www.personal.psu.edu/~j5j/IPIP/

      More about the International Personality Item Pool:

      https://ipip.ori.org/

      24 votes
    8. When is euthanasia acceptable? Where do we draw the line ethically?

      I recall recently seeing an article posted that was related to euthanasia, and I started thinking about the subject. I see both potential pros and potential cons associated with it. For example,...

      I recall recently seeing an article posted that was related to euthanasia, and I started thinking about the subject. I see both potential pros and potential cons associated with it. For example, there's the concern about family members or authority pressuring an ill person to opt for doctor-assisted suicide to ease financial burdens, for instance. There's also the benefit, on the other hand, of allowing someone who is terminally ill or guaranteed to live the rest of their life in excruciating pain the option to go out on their own terms. With proper oversight and ethical considerations, it generally seems to be an all-around ideal to provide an "opt-out" for those who would only continue to suffer and would rather not prolong it, as a merciful alternative to forcing them to live it out.

      But then there are some trickier questions.

      As a disclaimer, I spent nearly a couple of decades struggling through depression and have been surrounded (and still am surrounded) by people who struggle with their own mental illnesses. Because of this, I'm perfectly aware of the stigma and subpar treatment of mental illness in general. With that in mind, I completely recognize that there are certain conditions which are, at this time, completely untreatable and result in peoples' quality of life deteriorating to the point that they become perpetually miserable, particularly with certain neurodegenerative diseases.

      Thus, the question occurred to me: wouldn't such a condition be the mental health equivalent of a terminal illness? Would it not be unethical to force someone to continue living under conditions in which their quality of life will only diminish? Shouldn't someone who has such a condition, and is either of sound enough mind or with a written statement of their wishes from a time when they were of sound enough mind, be able to make the same decision about whether or not to opt to go out on their own terms?

      And yet, as reasonable as it sounds, for some reason the thought of it feels wrong.

      Is there something fundamentally more wrong about euthanasia for mental health vs. euthanasia for physical health? Is it just a culturally-learned ideal?

      More importantly, what makes euthanasia acceptable in some cases and not others? Which cases do you think exemplify the divide? Is there something more fundamental that we can latch onto? Is there a clear line we can draw? Is psychology itself just too young a field for us to be drawing that ethical line?

      I'm genuinely not sure how to feel about this subject. I would be interested in hearing some other thoughts on the subject. The questions above don't necessarily have to be answered, but I thought they could be good priming points.

      24 votes
    9. Defining Triggers

      There was a discussion yesterday about if adding "Trigger warnings" was something we should do on Tildes. One of the things that I noted is that we don't have a general consensus on what actually...

      There was a discussion yesterday about if adding "Trigger warnings" was something we should do on Tildes. One of the things that I noted is that we don't have a general consensus on what actually constitutes a trigger. I thought it might be a good idea to have some discussions on what triggers are, so that we can have an effective discussion on the matter.

      I'm attempting to refrain from editorializing, and I'm open to revising how this is presented to meet that goal. I will editorialize in the comments, though.

      Accepted Psychological Definition. From Psychcentral.com, a generally accepted psychological definition of a trigger. The article I linked is a quick read, and I recommend you check it out, but if it's too lengthy:

      A trigger is something that sets off a memory tape or flashback transporting the person back to the event of her/his original trauma.

      Tumblr Definition. Some people are using a softer version of what a "trigger" is, and the definition is something more like this one, from mashable, discussing Tumblr

      ... a trigger is defined as content that could make someone upset, uncomfortable, or forced to remember or relive a past trauma.

      Another definition direct from Trigger Warning Guide on Tumblr:

      trigger or content warning, or TW and CW for short, is used to warn people of content that might illicit a strong or potentially harmful emotional response.

      Meme Definition. Other people didn't even understand that "trigger" actually has a real, psychology definition; they seemed to be more in line with an Urban Dictionary-esque definition (this is unpleasant, but important):

      A word used often by idiots on Tumblr to justify their bitchy attitudes, most of whom don't know what a real traumatic experience is.

      18 votes
    10. How malleable are personality traits, if at all?

      Under the right inputs opinions and worldviews can be changed relatively easily, but what about the more subtle stuff underneath? Can a workaholic with a strong drive later in life become...

      Under the right inputs opinions and worldviews can be changed relatively easily, but what about the more subtle stuff underneath? Can a workaholic with a strong drive later in life become lethargic? Can an innately introverted person later in life become innately extroverted?

      Those aren't the best examples, but that said my intuition would be that these tendencies are too deep rooted to be significantly altered and can only be superficially mitigated against one way or another.

      If this is to a degree incorrect I'd love to hear some anecdotes.

      10 votes
    11. The loneliness thread

      There is a tendency nowadays for public officials to characterise loneliness as a public health crisis. I agree that it's a pervasive condition. However, the human condition is not fully...

      There is a tendency nowadays for public officials to characterise loneliness as a public health crisis. I agree that it's a pervasive condition. However, the human condition is not fully medicalizable. I believe we can speak about it just as who we are, according to our full experience, in our capacity as first-person narrator, as witness, as who are the closest to their own struggles.

      But it can be really hard to be open, and hence vulnerable, to difficult emotions. In times of distress, our own internal communication can get jammed, and it natural that opening up to the external world may feel as if an insurmountable difficulty.

      Nevertheless, the great force of nature, evolution, has given us the ability to listen and be listened to. Its greatest strength may be manifest at the time of greatest need.

      Which is why I'd like to have this thread. This thread is for you, if you're feeling lonely at the time, or if you want to share your experience with loneliness, or if you would like to give support to our community members, or just to speak up, or just to listen.

      Let us tune in to each other's expressions in caring consideration. We don't have to be perfect in self-expression or empathy -- this is not a contest. This is a fireside chat, a place to rest, reflect, and understand, before moving on.

      Are you willing to join the conversation?

      38 votes
    12. How to gauge the degree of someone's self-awareness?

      It's common in my job - and likely many jobs - to require learning and correction. I've noticed that people who have stronger self awareness are more likely to improve and learn from...

      It's common in my job - and likely many jobs - to require learning and correction. I've noticed that people who have stronger self awareness are more likely to improve and learn from projects/mistakes/correction etc. I can say a lot more about the value of introspection, but I'll get to the point: I'd like to gauge someone's ability to do this by having a conversation with them.

      If you were interviewing a candidate to work for you, what would you ask them to find out how self-aware they are? I figure if you asked: "how self aware are you?", each candidate would respond "in addition to my strong organizational skills and quick learning, I am also incredibly self aware." So I'll need to sneak up on the idea a bit.

      12 votes