Archive for the ‘Cognitive Psychology’ Category

Success is Not Measured by Results

As we get educated, we realize that jealousy is ignorance and any sort of imitation is suicide. We come to the understanding that for better or worse even though the world is full of good, picking someone’s knowledge and understanding will leave us dissatisfied. We have to do our own internal work. Don’t rely on an earthly authority or society to tell you what is right for you to do. Your destiny is unique to you. The power in you is new, and no one but you know what you can do, and one will not know what one is endowed innately until one has tried. Each of us has been made the way we are so that we can see our own truth. Each of us will receive the truth that is right for us. Do not strive for perfection. Let us only try to commit all our effort and attention to the goals we are trying to accomplish. Genuinely, put time, hard work, and dedication into your craft, whatever task you are doing. It does not matter how minuscule the task is, do it with all your effort. Success is not measured by results. Success is you attempting something with intentions of doing your best. This is something that we continually should try to live by.


What Purpose Sleep Serves?




Sleep lets brain to reset its synapses or memory-storing connections that send signals between neurons. In waking hours, synapses grow to let information gathered through the day’s experiences to travel throughout the brain. During sleep, the synapses shrink. Without the sleep, the brain gets overwhelmed with irrelevant information and memories, which certainly would not help brain’s function.

Posted February 4, 2017 by dranilj1 in Cognitive Psychology

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Psychology of Communication

Communication involves an exchange of information, feelings, and meanings by the verbal and non-verbal message between 2 or more individuals. Interpersonal relationship is vital for creating a learning environment. No matter how hard you work or how brilliant you are, if you cannot connect with those around you, you are a professional failure. There is no ‘I’ in interpersonal interaction.

To work effectively, relating and communication with others is a must. Empathy and respect for feelings and views of others are a necessity. Accurate self-evaluation of our performance, the relationship with our surroundings, managing conflicts using active listening skills and exercising empathy is essential for productive communication. A healthy communication skill, maintaining a cordial relationship, and avoiding competition is a requisite for good interpersonal interaction.

It takes a combination of self-awareness, self-confidence, positive personal impact, outstanding performance skill, communication skills, and personal competence to dare to establish a successful relationship in life.

Our behavior is natural for us, but we are not aware of the impact of our behavior on others around us. This creates a blind spot in us that we do not want others to mention to us our behavior which seems so natural to us is doing to others. We do not want to be hurt and we just do not care for others reactions to our natural behavior. Through self-awareness we learn what impact our behavior; both positive and negative, have on others around us. This knowledge helps us become effective in our interaction with others.

Certainly, one’s self-worth and capabilities must be effectively and scientifically evaluated. We impact on others through our opinions. It is an altogether different issue if someone is allergic to even a good or positive opinion about them. Silence when intelligently incorporated is more eloquent, but being silent as the grave, leads others to grave.

Whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability and might, outstanding performance is a key to success in life. Active listening, giving and receiving criticism, interacting with different personalities competently is a hallmark of perfect communication. A competent individual is self-aware, uses this awareness to better understand others and adapt to their behavior, build and nurture strong, lasting, mutually beneficial relationship, and will resolve a conflict in a positive way.

You just require a few interpersonal skills to handle any situations. Firstly, analyze the situation, establish a realistic objective, select a correct social way of behaving, control your own natural behavioral tendencies to shape other people’s behavior, and finally monitor your own and other people’s behavior.

All of us want to be understood and accepted. This is achieved when you listen and acknowledge other people’s thoughts and feelings, and finally, you express your own thoughts and feelings openly and directly in a comprehensible way.

Our communication styles can be passive, aggressive, passive-aggressive and assertive. Passive communication is an inability or unwillingness to express thoughts and feelings. In this style of communication, we either do something we do not want to do or make up an excuse rather than do things in the way we want to do. An aggressive communication entails overreaction, blaming and criticizing. This sort of communication intimidates and may even be physically violent. This style will not pay any heed to consider the right of others. The passive-aggressive style of communication avoids confrontations but will manipulate to get things done their own way. This sort of communication often resorts to smiling when they are boiling and angry inside. The assertive way of communication entails saying what they want to say and stand up to substantiate what they believe without hurting others.

Any conflict occurs when there is opposition. Opposition occurs when a solution cannot be found about the disagreement. A conflict is a disagreement through which we perceive a threat to our needs, well-beings, interests, or concerns. The main cause of conflict is miscommunication and conflict is healthy and a normal part of the human relationship. To resolve a conflict, identify areas of agreement and areas of compromise so that a solution to the prevailing conflict can come through.

Please remember, aggression breeds aggression. To handle any conflict, you can run away from the conflict, oblige to the one you are in conflict, defeat the opposite party, or cooperate.

If you want to resolve conflict stay calm, speak non-provocatively, quietly, slowly, and very calmly. Listen carefully without interruption and prejudice. Respect the other person when voicing your opinion or point of view. Try to use humor if possible. Let the other person know that you understand fully their opinion by asking pertinent questions for better understanding of the prevailing conflict. Just say what you want to say in a clear, direct, and simple way. Do not take it as an insult on the self of what the angry person is saying, probably they do not mean what they are saying. When resolving conflicts, make sure you are not alone. Save emotions and opinions for another place and time, if you become argumentative. Make sure to convey you do not want a fight, but desperately want a solution to the prevailing conflict in a friendly way. If you have offended the other, do not hesitate to apologize sincerely.

Improve interpersonal competence, reduce conflict, and increase productivity by acquiring fantastic communication skills!

Posted January 21, 2017 by dranilj1 in Cognitive Psychology

Live Life from a place of Inspiration Instead of Motivation

There is difference between inspiration and motivation, and we will know which one is in charge by the way we feel about something. When inspiration is still present, we are naturally motivated and can achieve all things required. But when we resort to using our will to motivate ourselves despite the writing on the wall; we will feel exhausted, worried, and overwhelmed. Be mindful of these two in all areas of life. Motivation is of the ego and inspiration is of the soul.

When something has run its course and served its purpose, the soul begins to withdraw its energy and focus. This can be confusing. The inspiration felt in the beginning disappears and motivation enters the scene. The soul is the giver of inspiration and it permeates everything that we do. There is ease and effortless flow. Things feel good and feel right. However, we tend to forget that things are not permanent and believe it will last forever, so when inspiration is gone we resort to using our will to motivate ourselves.

Culturally, we are motivated but not inspired. We live our lives by motivation and wonder why we are so unhappy. Motivation forces us to keep up with others, compete against others, and measure ourselves to others. This kind of living is a testament of a collective who use will or motivation to achieve their ends in life. When they do, they realize they are not better off for it; misery is still sitting at the dinner table. Despite achieving objectives, the soul is left unfulfilled and therefore the achievements are not imbued with the soul’s light. It all feels empty. Rather than investigating this state of being, we rush off to the next motivational adventure.

Motivation compels us to act, to do, give, expend, push past limits, and push the envelope. We all need to take certain actions in the world to get things done. I am not in any way saying passivity is a good thing. We need to learn to distinguish between the two. Many of us have been guilty of using motivation when we should have been waiting upon the soul to inspire our course of action. We had to keep the momentum going. We were not willing to just sit and wait for that moment; we have too much to do and no time to waste. This kind of urgency is not really being productive. In fact, it is depleting. When motivation is running the show, the very thing that we are so desperate to accomplish becomes distorted in the process. We lose our passion and begin to question if we are doing the right thing or even if we are on the right path. Self doubt creeps in and infects our plans, our intentions, and eventually the outcome.

That is why stepping back before any new undertaking to assess; who is in the driver seat is crucial. Be mindful as we embark on a new adventure whether it is love, career, or starting a business. Always remain conscious of how one feel before, during and after. Our feelings will let us know if inspiration or motivation is dictating the execution of our plans. If inspiration is guiding, our steps then continue on and can rest assured that the outcome will be magnificent. If on the other hand, motivation has become our compass then we need to stop, get quiet and wait upon the whisperings of the soul to spur and inspire us on. Living our life from a place of inspiration instead of motivation will enrich us beyond measure.

Significance of Letting Go

You’ve got to let go. We all do it. It’s quite common. We hold on to something because it feels important to us. Sometimes, it is a relationship that ended a long time ago, but we just can’t let go. We’re not ready. We hold on to this crazy belief that somehow, some way, we can get it back. We can put a new spark in it. The other person will come to their senses. Past is over and if you live in past, you’re future will never improve. Sometimes it is tragedy or an untimely death. We pine for what could have been… What should have been… What we were entitled to!

First and foremost, it’s not healthy to focus your thoughts on the negative. Sometimes it is a dream, a desire, a hope, a wish. Something we have wanted for years but has never happened. Something that always seems to be just ahead, but is actually further away than it has ever been. What seems like something in the future is actually just a reflection of a past desire that never came to fruition. Sometimes we hold on to grudge. We were wronged. We want justice. To move on with life, you must live in the present! We are waiting for the world to correct the egregious error it imposed upon us without our consent.

You’ve got to let it go, because it’s dead weight. If you think something’s going to happen, you subconsciously make it happen! The longer you hold on to the past, the longer it takes to move forward. You can’t attract something new when your energetic space is filled with too much of the old and the old doesn’t serve you. All that we hold on to is an anchor, holding us in place, certainly every so often pulling us down into the oceanic depths where there is no air, nothing to breathe. The future is no place to live either. You can anticipate what will happen; you must deal with what is happening.

Sometimes, we don’t realize we are holding on to the old until we make a conscious effort to let it go and see what happens. Think of something that is holding you back right now like a relationship, dream, grudge, debt, beliefs, and fears. You’ll know it is dead weight if, when you think about it, you feel yourself slip into a lower vibration of fear, shame, guilt, anger, or sadness.

Decide to let it go. We all must learn how to deal with rejection, pain. It’s part of life. The sooner we realize that, the better we will be at bouncing back when things don’t go our way. Breathe in, hold it, breathe out, and let it go. Write it on a piece of paper and burn it. Tell a friend you are letting something go. Decide you will let it go and do something tangible or symbolic to show your commitment to this release. Clear the space. Let it just sit empty for a minute. Resist the urge to fill it, just for now.

Everything that happens to us is a learning experience, life is not easy, but it is worth it in the end. Happiness is a choice. Take a look at that space and decide intentionally what you want to be there. Just as you would consciously decorate a room in your home, allow yourself to consciously decorate your life. Only allow into it what you want to be there. Tell everything else no, it is not welcome. Be the one in command of your energetic space. Keep it clean and free of clutter. Free of proverbial mold. No one gets to sit in your space unless you allow it. Make sure everything in your space is there by your design and with your permission.

Do your best, forget the rest. Learn from these things, but don’t let them control you! Take some alone time, go for a drive, listen to music, read a book. Get your mind off of what is keeping you down. Find what works for you and do it. There comes a time and place when it is okay to be selfish. Worry about yourself for once, get your act together, and the rest will fall into place.

Basically, we all have our moments. It’s important, in order to grow and succeed as a person, to learn to let go. No one is perfect, and if we didn’t make mistakes, we would never learn. Think of the positives of every situation. Don’t have regrets, because at one time, everything you did was exactly what you wanted, and everything happens for a reason.

The Universal Nature Of Woman’s Facial Beauty

Humans prefer attractive faces over unattractive ones. Our preference for attractive faces exists from early infancy and is robust across age, gender and ethnicity. The quest to define facial beauty either by the size or shape of isolated facial features, for example, eyes or lips or by the spatial relations between facial features dates back to antiquity, when the Ancient Greeks believed beauty was represented by a golden ratio of 1:1.618. Although there is little support for the golden ratio, studies have shown that averaging a group of faces results in a synthetic face more attractive than any of the originals. Furthermore, a sufficiently large increase in the distance between the eyes and mouth of an individual face can make the face appear grotesque. Any individual’s facial attractiveness can be optimized when the spatial relations between facial features approximate those of the average face. However, no evidence to date has confirmed this suggestion.

Two types of alterations can be made to the spatial relations between facial features of any individual face. One may alter the vertical distance between the eyes and the mouth; this alteration results in a change in the ratio of this distance to the face length, which is measured by the distance between the hairline and the chin. The ratio is henceforth referred to as the length ratio. The other alteration is to change the horizontal distance between the pupils; this change alters the ratio between this distance and the face width, which is measured between the inner edges of the ears. This ratio is henceforth referred to as the width ratio.

Using a regression analysis to determine the exact relation between the attractiveness score and length ratio, it is found that facial attractiveness follows a curvilinear function with length ratio. Face with an average length ratio is rated as more attractive than faces with other length ratios. This is further supported by the finding that attractiveness scores for faces without an average length ratio were significantly less than the mean attractiveness score for the faces with an average length ratio.

When an optimally attractive state for an individual face in terms of both length and width ratios is examined, it is found that facial attractiveness follows a curvilinear function with the width ratio. When an individual face’s length ratio is already optimal, the optimal width ratio maximizing its attractiveness is 46. Attractiveness scores for faces without an average width ratio were significantly less than the mean attractiveness score for the faces with an average width ratio. Attractiveness scores for faces without an average length ratio were significantly less than the mean attractiveness score for the faces with an average length ratio indicating preference for an ideal length ratio is independent of the width ratio.

In each individual face, there exists an optimally attractive state in terms of both length and width ratios. When the face’s eye-to-mouth distance is 36 percent of the face length and interocular distance is 46 percent of the face width, the face reaches its optimal attractiveness given its unique facial features. Further, although the absolute level of attractiveness may vary with differences in facial features, the optimal length and width ratios remain constant. These optimal, golden ratios correspond with those of an average face. Critically, this preference for average ratios reflects a true preference for the average and not a regression toward the mean. These results may explain some basic daily observations, such as why some hairstyles can make an unattractive face appear more attractive or vice versa. Changing one’s hairstyle may alter the perceived face length or face width, as well as their related length and width ratios, therefore affecting the perceived attractiveness of the face.

Many experiments on attractiveness involve comparing faces that differ in both facial features and spatial relations, but the presence of features that vary in attractiveness could obscure any effect of variation in feature spatial relation on attractiveness. Also, prior research comparing an average face to individual faces failed to discover the ideal length and width ratios for any individual face because the averaging process tends to not only average the spatial relations between facial features but also smoothes the facial features and skin texture. This smoothing effect could artificially increase the attractiveness of the average face, obscuring the effect of average spatial relations on facial attractiveness.

Identifying the optimal length and width ratios for individual facial beauty have attracted a tremendous amount of pursuit, but yet eluded discovery for centuries. Furthermore, the present findings suggest that although different faces vary greatly in absolute attractiveness, for any particular face, there is an optimal spatial relation between facial features that will reveal its intrinsic beauty.

It should be noted that the optimal spatial relations found can also coexist with preferences for sexually dimorphic features. A woman who has large lips, suggesting a strong mating potential, with average length and width ratios will always be more attractive than a woman with narrow lips and average length and width ratios. It is unknown, however, whether the preference for average length and width ratios is stronger than the desire for a pronounced sexually dimorphic trait. In other words, a woman with large lips and unattractive length and width ratios may or may not be preferred to a woman with narrow lips and ideal length and width ratios. Future research is necessary to assess the nature of this trade-off.

By definition, eye-mouth-eye angle involves both horizontal and vertical components. The preference for an average length ratio is independent of the width ratio. Therefore, it is important to note that despite the similarity between the two measures, they may actually measure two very different aspects of the face. While eye-mouth-eye angle provides information on the spatial relations between internal facial features, it also assesses the relation between the internal features and the external facial contour. Since faces are perceived holistically, it is important to consider the facial elements in the context of the whole face. It is possible for the length and width ratios to vary, while eye-mouth-eye angle stays the same, and vice versa. In the context of the whole face length ratios and width ratios appear independent, but within the localized area of the eyes and mouth, there may be an interaction between length and width.

Why should we find a face with an average length and width ratio attractive? Two existing theories provide explanations at two different levels. At the evolutionary level, it has been suggested that humans prefer to reproduce with other healthy mates. Generations of healthy mate selection may act as an evolutionary averaging process. This process leads to the propagation of healthy individuals with physical characteristics, including faces that approximate the population average. As a result, we are biologically predisposed to find average faces attractive. At the cognitive level, it is well established that after exposure to a series of exemplars from one object category, we form a prototype, that is to say, an average for this category. One robust consequence of prototype formation is that we find the prototype more attractive than any individual category members because the prototype is easier to process. Due to this same cognitive averaging mechanism, the average face is perceived as more attractive than any individual face. It is suggested that while the two theories provide different levels of explanation, they may work together to account for our preferences for the optimal length and width ratios for facial beauty. The evolutionary process predisposes us to find average length and width ratios attractive. The cognitive process prescribes what the average length and width ratios are by averaging the ratios of individual faces we have encountered to date.

Credits: NIH


Happiness is a slippery concept. Sometimes it seems to us like mythical, wonderful, but probably unobtainable, but happiness is more than obtainable. It is the natural result of building up our well-being and satisfaction with life. The building blocks of well-being constitute positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning and accomplishment. Each of these elements is essential to our well-being and satisfaction with life. Together, they form the solid foundation upon which we can build a happy and flourishing life.

When someone asks you whether you are satisfied with your life, your answer depends heavily on the mood you are in. When you are feeling positive, you can look back on the past with gladness; look into the future with hope; and enjoy and cherish the present. Positive emotions have an impact that goes far beyond bringing a smile to our faces. Feeling good helps us to perform better at work and study, it boosts our physical health, it strengthens our relationships, and it inspires us to be creative, take chances, and look to the future with optimism and hope. Feeling good is contagious. Seeing smiles makes us want to smile. Hearing laughter makes us feel like laughing and when we share our good feelings with others, they appreciate and enjoy our company. We have all experienced highs and lows in life, but we are doing ourselves harm when we dwell on the lows. If we look back on the past with pain and regret, we will become depressed. If we think of the future and worry about danger and risk, we become anxious and pessimistic. So it is incredibly important to recognize the positive emotions we feel, so that we are able to enjoy the present without worry and regret.

Spending time with friends and family, engaging in hobbies, exercising, getting out in nature, or eating great food makes us feel good. We need to make sure there is always room in our lives for these things. Cultivating positive emotions makes it easier to experience them naturally. Many of us have an automatic tendency to expect the worst, see the downside, and avoid taking risks. If we learn to cultivate positive feelings about life, we begin to hope for the best, see the upside, and learn to take great opportunities when they come along.

We don’t thrive when we are doing nothing. We get bored and feel useless, but when we engage with our life and work, we become absorbed. We gain momentum and focus, and we can enter the state of being known as ‘flow’. Flow is a state of utter, blissful immersion in the present moment. When you are lying in bed, it is often hard to convince yourself to throw off the covers and plant your feet on the ground. You worry about the cold. You feel tired and sluggish. You lie in bed, thinking but not getting anywhere, but when you are running, you don’t question anything. You are flying through space; one foot goes in front of the other, and again, and again, because it must. You are absorbed entirely in the present moment.

Not everyone enjoys running, but perhaps you feel this way when you are playing music, painting, dancing or cooking. If you have a job you love, you probably feel this way at work. We are most likely to fulfill our own unique potential when we are engaged in activities that absorb and inspire us. When we identify our own greatest strengths, we can consciously engage in work and activities that make us feel most confident, productive and valuable. We can also learn skills for cultivating joy and focus on the present. Mindfulness is a valuable skill. Using mindfulness, you can learn to develop clear awareness of the present, both physically and mentally.

Humans are social animals. We have a need for connection, love, physical and emotional contact with others. We enhance our own well-being by building strong networks of relationships around us, with family, friends, coworkers, neighbors and all the other people in our lives. A problem shared is a problem halved. Happiness shared is happiness squared. When we share our joy with those we love, we feel even more joy, and when we love, we become more loveable.

We depend on the people around us to help us maintain balance in our lives. When we are alone, we lose perspective on the world, and we forget that others may be bearing greater burdens than our own, but when we let other people into our lives, we remember to give as well as take. When you belong to a community, you have a network of support around you, and you are part of it.

It is important to build and maintain relationships with the people in your life, but it is equally important to recognize the difference between a healthy relationship and a damaging one. Some relationships are dangerous because they are one-sided or co-dependent. Other relationships struggle because people take each other for granted, don’t make time for each other, or can’t seem to communicate. The key to relationships is balance. It is not enough to surround ourselves with friends; we must also listen and share, make an effort to maintain our connections, and work to make those connections strong.

We are at our best when we dedicate our time to something greater than ourselves. This could be religious faith, community work, family, a political cause, charity, professional or creative goal. People who belong to a community and pursue shared goals are happier than people who don’t. It is also very important to feel that the work we do is consistent with our personal values and beliefs. From day to day, if we believe our work is worthwhile, we feel a general sense of well-being and confidence that we are using our time and our abilities for good.

It might be family, or learning, or our faith we value most in this world. Perhaps, you feel strongly about helping disadvantaged children, or protecting the environment. Once you have identified what matters most to you, find some like-minded people and begin working together for the things you care about. You can find meaning in your professional life as well as your personal one. If you see a deeper mission in the work you do, you are better placed to apply your talents and strengths in the service of this mission.

We have all been taught that winning isn’t everything. We should strive for success, but it’s more important to enjoy the game. However, people need to win sometimes. What use are goals and ambitions if we never reach them? For well-being and happiness, we must look back on our lives with a sense of accomplishment like, ‘I did it, and I did it well’. Creating and working toward goals helps us anticipate and build hope for the future. Past successes make us feel more confident and optimistic about future attempts. There is nothing bad or selfish about being proud of your accomplishments. When you feel good about yourself, you are more likely to share your skills and secrets with others. You will be motivated to work harder and achieve more next time. You inspire people around you to achieve their own goals.

It is important to set tangible goals, and keep them in sight. Identify your ambitions and cultivate the strengths you need in order to reach them. It is a great way to keep focused on your long-term goals and acknowledge the little successes along with the big ones. It is vital to cultivate resilience against failure and setbacks. Success doesn’t always come easy, but if we stay positive and focused, we don’t give up when adversity strikes.

All Credits goes to Martin Seligman.

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