Paradox: A good mood is the enemy of sober thinking

A man with long hair, a striped t-shirt and dark pants and a woman with long hair, a blue denim jacket, a white blouse and gray pants have jumped up and are in the air with their backs to the camera on a long paved street with tall buildings and trees.

Scientists have discovered a strange harm - elation interferes with rational reasoning

Everyone wants to always be in a good mood, but that turns out not to be such a good thing. In a state of elation and optimism, a person does not think rationally and their judgments are strongly influenced by emotions.

The more cheerful and positive we are, the easier it is to form an opinion based on the first impression, excluding common sense and analytical abilities, and this threatens to lead to problems at a later stage. The Daily Mail writes about this and refers to a study by the Australian psychologist Joseph Forgas, focused on the extent to which a good mood affects thought processes.

Participants in the study had to read a short philosophical essay accompanied by a picture of a young woman or an elderly man. People in a more cheerful mood preferred to read the essay they were told was written by an older man, while those in a bad mood perceived the essay written by the older man and the young girl equally. The same smile that seemed friendly and sympathetic to those in a positive mood seemed strange and even threatening to those in a negative mood, the study authors added.

Three girls smiling in a sunflower field.
Photo: Unsplash

Keep calm

The results suggest that for people who rely on the stability of their own reasoning and analytical abilities, such as company directors, managers, judges and lawyers, it is important to be calm and in a normal state, rather than depressed or highly emotional. Mood, of course, is of great importance for all people, regardless of what their professions are, and especially for those who are responsible for human life: doctors, drivers, pilots, machinists, the publication adds.

A woman in the back is seated on a high rock, wearing a beige shirt, her arms are at her sides, her palms are crossed, and she is looking at the opposite mountains and a blue sky with clouds.
Photo: Unsplash


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