pronoid

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Credit John Lund – Getty Images

As covered in my earlier post on Green Comet, Pronoid, altruism is good for you. This article in Scientific American adds to the evidence. While pronoia promotes the survival of individuals, groups and species, this article concentrates on the health and longevity benefits of altruism.

The benefits of giving rather than receiving are more than just spiritual.

Most people still seem to be ignorant about the impact such other-oriented behavior can have on their own well-being. Fortunately, several researchers have already stepped in to investigate this important question …

A few weeks afterward the researchers measured the blood pressure of both groups. It turned out the blood pressure (systolic and diastolic) of those participants who had spent money on others had significantly decreased as compared with the subjects who spent the money on themselves. Moreover, the decrease in blood pressure was similar in size to the effect of starting high-frequency exercise or a healthier diet.

The article goes on to describe several studies and experiments that give results supporting the fact that helping others helps ourselves. However, it also cautions that it is not true in all cases.

Of course, even here too much of a good thing can be detrimental. If people only concentrate on the well-being of others, they can ignore their own needs.

“There’s a big difference between pleasing people and helping them.” One should choose when and how to help, instead of being pushed to assist whomever happens to ask.

So, if you are truly giving and not being coerced into it, altruism is good for you. It makes you feel better and it might even make you live longer. But if you are coerced, if you feel that you should do it or must do it, then it can be bad for you. Help whom you choose to help, not necessarily whom someone tells you you should, and you will be happier and healthier.

via Exercise, Eat Well, Help Others: Altruism’s Surprisingly Strong Health Impact – Scientific American Blog Network

rjb

Image credit - Helgi Halldórsson - CC-BY-SA

Image credit – Helgi Halldórsson – CC-BY-SA – Click for larger image

It’s time to see if my stalker has given up. On July 22, 2014, I changed the settings on this blog to require users to log in before they can vote on the thumbs up/thumbs down. I didn’t want to do that but my stalker forced my hand. He was coming to Green Comet and systematically giving my posts thumbs down. That was okay. Everyone should be allowed to express their honest opinion here. But my stalker went too far. He showed that he is either simply crass, or he was giving the thumbs down votes without reading the posts. On July 12 I put up a tribute post to Pery Burge, and my stalker immediately gave it his usual thumbs down. Who does that to a lovely tribute to a deceased person? My disgust meant it was time to act.

Image credit - Szilas - Public domain

Image credit – Szilas – Public domain – Click for larger

It was successful. My stalker was either too afraid or too lazy to register to continue his campaign. This site has been free of his distasteful contributions for over a month. Now it’s time to remove the barrier to voting and see whether we’ve shaken him off for good. The voting on thumbs up/thumbs down is again open to all without the requirement to register.

Click at will, and wish me luck.

rjb

Pronoid

Photo credit: Eileen Delhi / Foter.com / CC BY-NC

Photo credit: Eileen Delhi / Foter.com / CC BY-NC

Just because you’re paranoid, that doesn’t mean no one’s out to get you. That old saying is true for some people. Paranoia can be a useful trait for a spy, say. Or a despot. But for most people it’s just a problem. Paranoia, loosely defined as a psychological disorder involving delusions of persecution or grandeur, can cause intellectual impairment, hallucinations and just plain crotchetiness. At the extreme it can lead to homicidal tendencies or the need to rule the world. It causes suspicion of other people and can make for a very difficult social life. Paranoia is not a viable survival trait outside of a few very specific situations. It’s not a good evolutionary trait either. The human species wouldn’t be successful if everyone was paranoid. Still, it would be just as bad for us if we were completely free of suspicion. If the tiger didn’t get us the loan shark would. Continue Reading