This is a legacy website for the Behavioural Design Lab. It is no longer updated.
Behavioural Design Lab Subscribe Bird Contact

Great Vacation? Don’t Brag to Your Friends

Psychology, Technology, social, wellbeing

Your friends don’t want to hear about your excellent adventures.

While you may have gotten great pleasure from an epic event — sipping a rare wine in Burgundy, watching a Himalayan sunrise — that pleasure is all your own.

A recent study in Psychological Science says that despite the thrills people receive from an extraordinary experience, few anticipate its potential social cost: exclusion by friends who would really rather not hear about it.

Harvard researchers found that when people socialize, those who had the same experience, no matter how mundane, enjoyed chatting about it together. Those same people might well exclude the person who thought others couldn’t wait to hear all about his or her most unusual one.

“It’s a timely question, given how much people are sharing and bragging about their experiences through social media,” said Cassie Mogilner, an assistant professor of marketing at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, who looks at the happiness that people derive from ordinary and extraordinary events. “This suggests that people may be rolling their eyes at all those posts about amazing vacations.”

Read the rest of the article...

Related content

The Four Sources of Happiness

Social network targeting to maximise population behaviour change: a cluster randomised controlled tr...

Let’s quit together: health kicks are easier if your partner signs up too

© 2015 Warwick Business School and the Design Council
jQuery UI Datepicker - Default functionality