Category Archives: Cognitive Psychology

Study: Feel Bad to Feel Great (Relief Boosts Positive Emotions)

Relief is one of the most common emotions, and it is one of our few basic emotions. Most of our emotions have clear emotional valences. For example, happiness is considered to have a positive emotional valence; anger is considered to have a negative valence; and arousal is considered to have a neutral valence.

Continue reading

The Temporal Doppler Effect: Why the Future Feels so Close and the Past so Distant

time

The Temporal Doppler Effect was illustrated in a recent study by Caruso and colleagues (2013). The Temporal Doppler Effect suggests that the future feels closer than the past.

In their study, they proved that Valentine’s Day seemed closer when it was one week in the future than when it was one week in the past. Continue reading

The Focusing-Effect: Why We End Up Making the Wrong Decisions

the focusing-effect

Making the right decisions is difficult for many reasons. The focusing-effect is one of them.

When we make decisions, we often get very focused on certain aspects of the decision. This article describes this tendency (=the focusing-effect) in detail and the research surrounding it. Continue reading

The Halo Effect: Why We Judge People From First Hand Impressions

The halo effect is a cognitive bias, and it represents the idea that overall impressions dominate the way we perceive others.

Continue reading

Do We Have Free Will? People Believe They Have More Free Will Than Others

The discussion whether we have free will or not is endless. Some people like to attribute all happenings to environmental or social influences, which reflects a deterministic point of view. Others prefer to look at people as having their own free will, and this implies that we choose our own destinies, not influenced by anything or anyone else than ourselves. Continue reading

Actor-Observer Bias: Why We Blame Other People Instead of Ourselves

actor-observer bias

The actor-observer bias is the tendency that people view their own actions as caused by the situational context, while others’ actions are seen as caused by personality or stable dispositions. Continue reading

How Your Mood Influences Your Cognitive Functioning

mood

A literature review by Mitchell & Phillips (2007) examined how positive and negative moods influence people’s cognitive functioning, or more specifically, executive functions

Continue reading

How People Pick Up Anxiety Through Classical Conditioning

anxiety

This post gives an account of the processes that are involved in the learning of anxiety. More specifically, it will consider the theory of classical conditioning. Continue reading