For questions relating to mechanisms that modulates behavior, either as an initiator, limiting influence, or sustainer.

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1answer
288 views

The Ben Franklin effect and cognitive dissonance

The Ben Franklin effect is the phenomena that if a person does a favor toward another person, there is an increased likelihood that the person will do another favor for that person. The same is true ...
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2answers
1k views

Why don't people read instructions?

Some people are very careless when reading instruction on a work task they've been given or in reading any other kind of text. They would skip some of the sentences, not get deep into other and ...
5
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1answer
737 views

What motivates individuals to engage in cyberbullying?

With the advent and proliferation of social media, forums and q&a sites, there has been a matching increase in the incidents of online-bullying, or 'cyber-bullying, that goes beyond trolling. All ...
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5answers
5k views

Why do people want what they don't have now?

There are many examples of people wanting what they don't have. For example, a single man may want to have a girlfriend, but after some time of having a girlfriend, he may want to be single again. Or ...
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0answers
52 views

What are other methods to induce ego depletion besides using emotional videos and thought suppression?

Muraven and Baumeister (2000) proposed that self-control is a limited resource akin to strength or a muscle, to deplete this limited resource leads to subsequent self-regulatory failure. Ego ...
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4answers
228 views

What is a good book for studying incentives?

I am looking for a book, which gives a broad overview of all the main theories regarding incentives. Using this book, I would like to further my understanding of things like: Why slot machines ...
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1answer
74 views

Term for incentives working without conscious awareness

Is there a term that captures the idea that incentives work even when people deny their choices have been swayed by them? For example, an individual amazon book reviewer may deny that a recent ...
4
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1answer
212 views

How strong is the need to belong?

Are there any studies that measure the need to belong? Does this need vary greatly from person to person or is there a tight deviation? What would explain why some have very little need to belong ...
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1answer
267 views

What are the key predictive traits of therapeutic success?

In my answer here, to this question : Does hypnosis in any form for any type of disorder work? It brought up the valid question of why people quit therapy. Obviously, if the therapy is not helpful, ...
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1answer
662 views

How can motivation be increased by improving brain chemistry with nutrition and activities?

I'm reading some material about motivation and brain chemistry. One of the interesting articles is "7 Ways to Increase Motivation by Improving your Brain Chemistry". I'm interested in a more ...
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1answer
126 views

What positive techniques can be used to motivate individuals resistant to common gamification techniques?

A previous question I asked dealt with Gamification techniques to encourage people to perform online workplace training. We are hoping that we can introduce some game techniques to lift the ...
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2answers
88 views

Is it good to take playful breaks at work?

I read this Washingon Post article about groups that are trying to encourage play in "workaholic" adults. I'm curious if anything is known on the psychological effects of taking playful breaks at ...
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1answer
104 views

Learned dyslexia? adult predicament from childhood teacher´s incompetence?

I have a friend, over 30, who is convinced she cannot really read. Of course; she can read, but she struggles so much with sorting letters into words that she cannot absorb the content. Playing - say ...
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24 views

Is it sufficient to say self control eliciting the reduced ERN (error-related negativity) in cognitive control tasks?

The limited resource model of self control suggests that the exertion of self control can impair performance in subsequent cognitive control tasks (for details on the model, check this question. Most ...
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0answers
29 views

What is the effect of income on an adolescent's reward response to monetary vs. social reward?

I am asking a question related to adolescents and their response to either monetary or social reward. What is the effect of income levels on monetary vs. social reward? Do higher income children ...
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0answers
113 views

Theories of Hunter/Gatherers in the 21st Century

Are there any theories or schools of thought that assume most humans still act as if they are still hunters/gatherers? Hunter/gatherer societies of today would still prefer to sit around and talk ...
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0answers
46 views

How does motivation relate to performance and to fun and to recognition?

Many studies indicate that for tasks that require cognitive skills and creative thinking, monetary reward does not work to improve performance. Rather, we should give people purpose, autonomy and ...
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0answers
71 views

Does winning the Fields medal decrease subsequent research achievement?

I just stumbled on this summary in Slate of a study by Borjas and Doran (2012, FULL TEXT PDF). To quote the summary: According to a new study by Harvard's George Borjas and Notre Dame's Kirk ...
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0answers
78 views

Why does a clock counting down generate more pressure than a clock counting up?

Why does it seem that people feel more pressure with a clock counting down as opposed to counting up? Is there a specific term for this? Maybe counting down signifies some sort of loss whereas ...
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0answers
335 views

What is the cognitive basis for a sudden loss of confidence in social/professional interactions?

This question is similar to this earlier question, but from a very different viewpoint - what I am asking here is, what is the cognitive basis for a sudden loss of confidence? For example, if a ...
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0answers
92 views

When one activity makes you less distracted doing another activity? [closed]

Background: When I'm coding, I sometimes make tea, and as long as I'm drinking the tea, I find myself more focused. Drinking tea seems to make me focus more. Thus, it seems that while doing something ...
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1answer
164 views

What causes lack of energy? The relative importance of testosterone versus emotional, genetic, and environmental factors

Some people assume that males lack of energy because of low testosterone. I would think that lack of energy could be due to esteem levels, emotional abuse, low self-worth, and even genetics to some ...
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1answer
81 views

Are you more successful if you publicly commit to pursuing a difficult goal?

If you have an ambitious goal, does it help to publicly commit to that goal? For example, if someone is training for a long distance triathlon but doesn't know whether he/she will be able to pull it ...
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1answer
143 views

Why does it seems in similar cases sometimes classic conditioning happens and in others habituation?

I'm slightly confused and was hoping you guys could correct me. In classic conditioning as with Pavlov's dogs if we ring a bell just before a dog is given food, the bell will give the same response ...
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1answer
41 views

What is the relation between fun and motivation? Are they the same?

Are 'having fun in doing something' and 'being motivated to do something' the same thing? If not, how are fun and motivation related? Is there any formal definition on this? Would it be possible to ...
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0answers
89 views

Why does clickbait use numbers?

Around the Internet, especially in social media, we see examples of hyperlinks in a common format that has been cynically dubbed "click bait" or "link bait". The idea is that authors publish these ...
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0answers
73 views

Why do certain activities seem to co-occur with well learnt skills?

I have found that when I do certain activities, while engaged with them, I am inclined to do other activities, as well, which come naturally and do not seem to break productivity of the first ones, ...
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0answers
42 views

What kinds of long - term cognition/motivation tracking tools are there? [closed]

I'm aware that there are dozens of personal "activity trackers"/ pedometers like fitbit that are aimed for mass consumer and can log activity over extended periods of time. Are there equivalent ...
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2answers
327 views

Does law of attraction have psychological basis? [closed]

A common claim in business and self-help seminars is that optimists are luckier. Is it true that optimism leads to greater success in life? If so, what part of the brain support this so called ...
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2answers
74 views

How to apply different motivational theories to understand career orientation?

"What motivates you towards choosing the career/job orientation you have chosen? Discuss and explain with reference to three of the motivational theories discussed during the course". I'm used to ...
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3answers
89 views

Does stopping hard tasks midway through negatively affect your chances of success?

When a person has embarked on an undertaking that is both unpleasant and important (a good example could be a 12 step drug treatment program), lets say they make progress, and then stall before ...
2
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3answers
81 views

IQ and Performance in Different Fields

Suppose a person is considered intelligent based on his IQ score. For example, suppose Bob has a high IQ score and is very interested in pure mathematics. He would most probably excel in this field. ...
2
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1answer
63 views

Are there already models for planning and goal-directed behaviour?

I'm interested in planning and how one is able to take action and plan ahead at the same time. I could imagine one could make observations and project these into the future using past experiences. The ...
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2answers
196 views

What exactly is meant when it is said that only you can make yourself happy?

From Lifehack: Thinking that having a significant other will complete you. If you are not a whole person already, then having a romantic partner will not make you whole. Plus, it puts a ...
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1answer
72 views

How to achieve homeostasis and cognitive closure, while living with more infinite unanswered questions and concrete explanations?

In this question we learn, curiosity (and scientific research in general) is a cycle that arises when one connects dots when analyzing new answers, which most of the time leads to more unanswered ...
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1answer
353 views

Can motivation for sex be transformed into productive motivation?

Sex seems to be a fundamental drive. To satisfy sexual desire, a person will often masturbate or have sex. What happens if a person abstains from anything sexual? Can this drive be "transferred" ...
2
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1answer
49 views

Is there a name for the psychology behind lowering your bets?

I'm having a hard time phrasing my question into words, so I'll provide an example: Imagine you ask someone how much it'll take to eat a worm. The person says they would eat a worm for \$20. Instead ...
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1answer
92 views

How to get out of the habit of eating junk food?

What causes habitual eating of junk food? How can one get out of the habit of eating junk food?
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0answers
16 views

Pleasure and reward [closed]

What exactly is pleasure? Is pleasure in some sense 'thoughts'? If you are given opiates, you will feel some sort of pleasure, even if you don't think about anything, but perhaps you are having some ...
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0answers
27 views

Are there any legitimate, and reasonable circumstances, where self-delusion is acceptable and/or required? [closed]

Can anyone point out a situation, based in real world events, or an entirely hypothetical situation, where it would be ok/right for someone to delude themselves into believing something false? For ...
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0answers
13 views

Could motivational interviewing techniques be used without engaging with a counselor?

I've found lots of info on motivational interviewing for strengthening a person's own motivation and commitment to change, but I'm wondering if this technique has been adapted to help people who won't ...
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0answers
30 views

What does current research tell us about addictive behaviors in games?

I'm creating a game, and I would like to know what research I can consult to make it more "addicting". The game is a casual one, like Candy Crush, Angry Birds, etc
2
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1answer
166 views

Why do people tend to reply to only one topic when multiple topics are brought up simultaneously?

This is a situation more frequent in online conversations, where you can type many things before the other person has a chance to reply. Perhaps cognitive load, multi-tasking ability, have something ...
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5answers
1k views

What is the difference between (and importance of) extrinsic vs. intrinsic rewards in gamification?

What is the definition of extrinsic and intrinsic rewards? Why are they important to, and what is their role in, gamification?
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2answers
377 views

Is the “fear of death” the most powerful impulse of the spirit?

Here is an iconic dialogue from The Dark Knight Rises: ...
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2answers
81 views

Why do we find things fun?

One may cause to argue that Fun activities are solely based off psychological and physical identification with certain activities, but surely there is a deeper analysis on why we find things fun. ...
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1answer
60 views

What is the psychological function of nostalgically reenacting activities from before we were born?

I'm asking specifically about nostalgia for a time before you were born, e.g. the Blitz parties / 40s tea dances that have big in the UK for the past decade, or the popularity of Speakeasy-themed bars ...
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1answer
77 views

Could the basis of love be the expectation of a future benefit?

Say you meet an attractive person of the opposite gender (or of the same gender, as the case may be). You are attracted to this person because of one or more salient qualities, intelligence, ...
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2answers
110 views

What causes students not to be interested in problem solving?

Sometimes students lack the drive for problem solving. One might say that they are bored. However, is there a scientific account on what causes ignorance of problem solving, when they simply are not ...
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1answer
54 views

How many sparring partners should I choose for the most effective motivation in the gym?

Question is simple. Will I be more motivated with one good friend or with a group of the same interested people during group exercise? Does group size affect our internal motivation? (starting by ...