People Will Misjudge You Unless You Manipulate Them
Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson talks about inaccurate perceptions, and how we view ourselves is often not how we come across to others.
Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson is a social psychologist who researches, writes, and speaks about the science of motivation. She is the Associate Director of the Motivation Science Center at the Columbia Business School, Senior Consultant for the Neuroleadership Institute, and author of the best-selling books:
Succeed: How We Can All Reach Our Goals, Nine Things Successful People Do Differently, Focus: Use Different Ways of Seeing The World for Success and Influence (co-written with E. Tory Higgins), and The 8 Motivational Challenges.
Halvorson is also a contributor to the Harvard Business Review, 99u, Fast Company, WSJ.com, Forbes, The Huffington Post, and Psychology Today.
In addition to her work as author and co-editor of the highly-regarded academic book The Psychology of Goals (Guilford, 2009), she has authored papers in her field’s most prestigious journals, including the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, European Journal of Social Psychology, and Judgment and Decision Making. She has received numerous grants from the National Science Foundation for her research on goals and achievement.
HGH is a member of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, and the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, and was recently elected to the highly selective Society for Experimental Social Psychology. She gives frequent invited addresses and speaks regularly at national conferences, and is available for speaking and consulting engagements, primarily in education, marketing, and management. She received her PhD in social psychology from Columbia University.
Heidi Grant Halvorson: One of the challenges I think that we need to face head on when we think about how we come across to other people is really understanding that perception is tricky and that for your perceiver, the person who’s trying to understand you, it’s really kind of an uphill battle. They’re operating on very little information trying to get the right, accurate image of you. But the good news is that the kinds of mistakes that perceivers make are very predictable. It’s not random. We know a lot about the kinds of signals a person sends and how they tend to be perceived by other people. President Obama, when he was running for reelection, had his first debate with Mitt Romney and he went into it, according to everything that was said afterwards, he had gone into it really trying to seem presidential and not wanting to rise to debate, kind of trying to take advantage of the fact that he was coming in as an incumbent president. And it turned out that at the end of it people who were in the audience, even people who were fans of President Obama, thought that he had come across as lethargic, as disengaged, wondering if he had had enough sleep that night. And afterwards he was really quite surprised when he spoke to his aides to find out how poorly he had done because he really thought he was very successfully coming across as above the fray and presidential when, in fact, he was actually seeming sort of out of it. And so you can think if someone like President Obama who’s really a gifted orator and has a lot of experience trying to come across to other people in a particular way, if he can be so wrong about how he’s coming across, then it’s obviously pretty easy for the rest of us to make the same mistake.
We tend to think that other people are really paying attention, really trying to understand us. I mean most of the time they’re happy to just get the gist of you and the gist can be totally wrong. The first phase of perception, what Kahneman calls system one thinking, is really the part that’s very automatic. It happens completely below your awareness and that’s where the perceiver is really trying to figure out, you know, the basics of you. Are you an anxious person or an honest person or a smart person or a warm person? And we use — the brain uses sort of basic trait terms to understand you, kind of just the gist of who you are. When we go into phase two, we take a more nuanced view of who you are. So then that’s the phase where you start to do things like take the context of someone’s behavior into account, take into account what you know of them outside this one situation. Really try to get a more nuanced view of what this person is like. Now the problem is phase one is automatic. It’s content to just get the gist. It uses shortcuts and rules of thumb in order to really kind of get a sense of who you are in that thin slice sort of way. Phase two is not automatic. It is labor-intensive. It requires a lot of effort and energy to get a more nuanced view of another person. So what happens is that much of the time people are never going past phase one. When they’re trying to understand you, they’re just getting the gist and they’re either not motivated to go into phase two and try to really get a more nuanced view of you or they’re just unable to go into phase two because they’re so busy with all the other things we have to pay attention to. So the point of the book was really to give people that research, that science that shows: Look, if you want to come across as trustworthy, if you want to come across as friendly, if you want to come across as competent or caring, these are the signals, right. This is the body language. These are the kinds of things you can say in order to really clearly convey that intent and come across the way you intend to. So it’s definitely a challenge coming across the way you intend to, but it’s definitely a challenge that, with the right tools, you can master.
"Perception is tricky," explains Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson, an associate director of the Motivation Science Center at the Columbia Business School. There's this notion that the way we see ourselves is the way others see us as well — not true. In her book No One Understands You and What to Do About It, she talks about the two phases of perception: automatic and thoughtful. People rarely try to move past that first phase where people have a "gist" of who you are as a person — most of the time, that's all they want. Halvorson explains some of the barriers that hinder people from going into that second phase and looking at you as a more nuanced person.
These thought leaders, founders, and entrepreneurs are propelling the kind of future we want to be a part of.
- The tech industry may be dominated by men in terms of numbers, but there are lots of brilliant women in leadership positions that are changing the landscape.
- The women on this list are founders of companies dedicated to teaching girls to code, innovators in the fields of AI, VR, and machine learning, leading tech writers and podcasters, and CEOs of companies like YouTube and Project Include.
- This list is by no means all-encompassing. There are many more influential women in tech that you should seek out and follow.
The results of this study showed depressive symptoms being highest in adolescence, declining in early adulthood and then climbing back up again into one's early 30s.
- A 2020 Michigan State University study examined the link between teen social networks and the levels of depression later in life.
- This study used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, specifically targeting social network data. The results showed depressive symptoms being highest in adolescence and declining in early adulthood, then climbing back up again into one's early 30s.
- There are several ways you can attempt to stay active and socially connected while battling depression, according to experts.
The study suggested that teenagers who have a smaller social circle showed higher rated of depression later on in life.
Credit: asiandelight/Shutterstock<p><a href="https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-09/msu-tsn093020.php" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">A 2020 Michigan State University study</a> examined the link between teen social networks and the levels of depression later in life. The results of this study suggested teens who have a larger number of friends in adolescent years may be less likely to suffer from depression later in life. These findings were especially prominent in women.</p><p>This study used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, specifically targeting social network data. This data asks students to select up to 5 male and 5 female friends and indicate how often they felt depressive symptoms. </p><p>MSU Sociology Assistant Professor Molly Copeland and lead author Christina Kamis (Sociology doctoral candidate at Duke University) published the study in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior in September. </p><p><strong>Female teenagers may struggle more with depression during their teen years but show fewer depressive symptoms later in life.</strong> </p><p>For female adolescents, popularity can lead to increased depression during their teen years. However, this ultimately may lead to lasting benefits of fewer depressive symptoms later in life. "Adolescence (is) a sensitive period of early life when structural facets of social relationships can have lasting mental health consequences," Copeland wrote, adding that "compared to boys, girls face additional risks from how others view their social position in adolescence."</p><p>Throughout this study, men showed no association between popularity and depressive symptoms, however, they did show benefits from naming more friends. As for why this is, Copeland has a theory: perhaps the expectations on young girls (compared to young boys) as well as the roles that lead to popularity can create a kind of stress and strain felt more prominently by girls than boys. </p><p>While this does create more difficult teen years for young girls, the stress and strain may lead to giving these girls a psychological skillset that benefits them later in life, allowing them to deal with stressful situations more easily.</p><p>The study also suggested that teenagers who have a smaller social circle showed higher rates of depression later on in life. </p><p><strong>Results from both men and women followed a U-shaped trajectory of depressive symptoms.</strong></p><p>The results showed depressive symptoms being highest in adolescence and declining in early adulthood, then climbing back up again into one's early 30s. This was particularly more noticeable in women, who showed a steeper decline in symptoms between the ages of 18-26, followed by a more rapid increase in symptoms in their early 30s. </p>
How to stay social while battling depression<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNDQ1MjA3MC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxNDMyNDY1N30.e1ULIJ5QYXh4H1SGUPUTJqYBCnX2XWp6InjPRr-2Bdw/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C22%2C0%2C22&height=700" id="832fd" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="b360bb24fb8d6025680bfffb52fd5982" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="depression support group illustration" />
Attending support groups, planning activities with family or even just a weekly phone call to a friend can help alleviate depression.
Credit: Mascha Tace/Shutterstock<p>Although maintaining relationships can help you cope, it can also be one of the most difficult things to do when you're experiencing depression.</p><p>As Dr. Jennifer L. Payne (an assistant professor/co-director of the Women's Mood Disorders Center at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore) <a href="https://www.everydayhealth.com/hs/major-depression/staying-socially-active-with-depression/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">tells Everyday Health</a>: "One of the common symptoms of depression is social isolation." </p><p>Payne goes on to explain that you can "soak up some energy" by simply being around other people, moving around, and staying active.</p><p><strong>Creating a daily schedule and planning activities ensures action. </strong></p><p>While it may be easy to turn down last-minute plans, it's more difficult to cancel plans you've already committed to with friends and family. While it's important not to overwhelm yourself with a packed schedule, creating a minimal daily schedule that involves seeing friends and family or doing activities that you've previously enjoyed can ensure you stay active and often makes you feel more accomplished at the end of each day. </p><p><strong>Support groups and social networking with people who understand. </strong></p><p>While depression can very easily make you feel isolated and alone, surrounding yourself with others who may be struggling with depression as well can help in multiple ways. You will have peer support from people who relate to how you're feeling plus the added benefit of being around people, which can raise your spirits. </p><p><strong>Keeping a journal (and setting goals) can help you feel accomplished. </strong></p><p>Keep a thought journal and detail certain daily or weekly goals (such as a plan to call a friend on Monday or to visit your local coffee shop for a change of scenery on Thursday). These small, achievable goals not only get you out of the house and/or interacting with others, but they also provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction once they are complete. </p><p><strong>Random acts of kindness, such as volunteering, will make you feel good. </strong></p><p><a href="https://bigthink.com/mind-brain/kindness-benefits-james-doty?utm_term=Autofeed&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1596517476" target="_self">Being kind is good for your health</a> in many different ways. Doing something nice for others can boost your serotonin levels. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is responsible for feelings of satisfaction and well-being. Similar to exercise, kindness, and altruism can also release endorphins, creating a <a href="https://www.quietrev.com/6-science-backed-ways-being-kind-is-good-for-your-health/#:~:text=Kindness%20releases%20feel%2Dgood%20hormones&text=Doing%20nice%20things%20for%20others,as%20a%20%E2%80%9Chelper's%20high.%E2%80%9D" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">temporary sense of euphoria</a> that can help combat depressive symptoms. </p>
Researchers have just discovered the remains of a hybrid human.
90,000 years ago, a young girl lived in a cave in the Altai mountains in southern Siberia. Her life was short; she died in her early teens, but she stands at a unique point in human evolution. She is the first known hybrid of two different kinds of ancient humans: the Neanderthals and the Denisovans.
Physicists create quantum entanglement, making two distant objects behave as one.