“Sonic Tonic” (Why Nature Sounds Manage Sleep & Stress) – MotherBoard, December 4, 2017
Millions of people in cities rely on recorded nature sounds to manage sleep and stress. Scientists now understand why it works, and one reason is the fact that sounds of nature have a unique ability to promote our “rest and digest” state – while artificial sounds prompt sympathetic arousal.
“The Consumerist Church of Fitness Classes” – The Atlantic, December 4, 2017
Gyms provide ritual and community, serving as a sort of religion. They also promote values some cultures already worship—capitalism and overwork.
“Nice Brains Finish Last” – Scientific American, November 27, 2017
A new study suggests that “prosocial” brains are more prone to depression, while those who prefer everything for themselves tend to be happier. A bit depressing!
“Can Kindness Be Taught?” – The New York Times, December 14, 2017
Yes it can! Teaching kindness is a global movement. “Kindness Curriculum” is being introduced in more schools, helping children to manage the stress of standardized testing and to cut down on interpersonal conflicts. Academic research shows that children who receive kindness training become more altruistic. It also strengthens their ability to focus and modestly boosts their academic performance.
A Striking Stat:
Nearly half (47%) of young men in the UK had a spa, salon or beauty treatment in the year leading up to June 2017 – up significantly from 33% in the same period in 2015.
Source: Mintel Research, 12/2017