SELFIE MAKEOVER APP: If you haven’t been hitting the gym lately, Photox can add six-pack abs ($3.96), give you skinny legs ($3.96) or bulk-up your arms ($2.97). If it’s a dermatologist you desire, the app can also minimize wrinkles ($2.97), lighten skin ($3.96) and remove acne (99 cents). Photox is connects people with a team of experienced photo editors who can alter images as quickly and naturally as possible.
Developed by a No. Virginia professional, Photox allows users to submit photos for an editing makeover. (Courtesy of Photox)
DIGITAL INFIDELITY: Facebook users in relationships frequently use the site to keep in touch with “back-burners” — exes or platonic friends they know they could connect with romantically, should their current relationships go south.
Men have back-burners at roughly twice the rate of women.
On average, respondents in relationships said they had romantic or sexual conversations with two people (!) besides their current partner.
POWER SUIT: Want to project power? Your clothes have to fit you. To be a power dresser, it has to look like you command the clothes, not that the clothes are commanding or wearing you.
The 1980s was the reign of the floppy bow tie and the suit. And that was the look most women wore in their 20s and 30s when they started in the workplace.
By the ’90s, women began to hang up their broad-shouldered jackets to favor the softer, more luxurious fabrics used by designers like Donna Karan.
The movie Working Girl, which prominently featured the beloved power suit. (NPR)
GOOD JOB MOST IMPORTANT IN A HUSBAND: What ever-married women want in a spouse, more than anything else, is someone with a good job. 78% of women said steady employment was important to them in a partner, more than the 70% who wanted someone with similar ideas about raising children, or the 38% who cared about sharing moral or religious views.
There are no gender differences between the spousal personality traits that helped a woman’s career and the ones that helped a man’s. In both cases, having a conscientious partner is the only trait that had any measurable correlation. What allows someone to lean in is a conscientious partner. It’s something both sexes should think about in their careers.
FAVORITE CHILD: We all know which kid Mom and Dad liked best, and odds are you’re thinking it’s not you. But does that really make a difference?
Many if not most parents do have a favorite child. And though parents usually strive to hide that, it’s not always successful. That differential treatment has been linked to problems with family relationships and risky behavior in teens.
But what matters is not how the parents actually treat the children, but how the kids perceive it.
In families that weren’t particularly close, the child who felt less favored was more likely to be a substance abuser. The more dramatic the difference they perceived in preferential treatment, the more likely they were to be using.
But when family members were more engaged with each other, the perceived favoritism had less impact, at least when it came to substance abuse.
After people learned to sort words while awake, their brains were able to do the same task while asleep. (Current Biology, Kouider et al.)
THINGS YOU DO IN YOUR SLEEP: For those who find themselves sleeping through work — you may one day find yourself working through sleep. People who are fast asleep can correctly respond to simple verbal instructions. This may explain why you might wake if someone calls your name or why your alarm clock is more likely to rouse you than any other noise.
LOVE DESTINY OR JOURNEY? Do you see love as a union of two people who are destined to be together? Or is it more of a journey they undertake, facing obstacles and working together to overcome them? According to new research, how you answer these questions may affect how you handle relationship troubles.
Those who believe in ‘destiny’ put less effort into working through relationship conflict. If they are soul mates, then nothing will go wrong in the relationship, and it will be easy. A conflict makes a destiny-believer question whether the current partner is actually their soul mate, and then they give up on working it out.
There are two mind-sets — a fixed mind-set, which occurs when someone believes that personal qualities like intelligence are immutable, and a growth mind-set, which occurs when someone believes that skills and characteristics can be cultivated through effort.
Love lock (NYTIMES)
LIFE PURPOSE & LONGEVITY: People with a sense of purpose had a 15% lower risk of death, compared with those who said they were more or less aimless. And it didn’t seem to matter when people found their direction. It could be in their 20s, 50s or 70s.
It could be as simple as making sure one’s family is happy. It could be bigger, like contributing to social change. It could be more self-focused, like doing well on the job. Or it could be about creativity: produce something that is appreciated in written or artistic form, whether it’s music, dance or visual arts.
A sense of purpose may protect people against stress with all of its harmful effects, including greater risk of heart disease. And that may explain why people with a sense of purpose live longer.
SPEAKING IN A DEAD DIALECT: Growing up, I could feel the language of my parents wither and die like autumn leaves. They had immigrated to the United States from Calabria in the late 1950s and continued to speak the dialect of their poor southern Italian region, but it was a tongue frozen in time by exile and filled with words that no longer existed in their homeland.
He had only Calabrian words for the plants, procedures and tools. Each of his children had attained some form of higher education and, with it, freedom from the strife and poverty that had chased him from Italy. We now found his background primitive and remote.
I had so much to tell him but no way to say it, a reflection of our relationship during his lifetime. Without his words, I was losing a way to describe the world. Memories suddenly mattered more than ever before, and I didn’t know if I could find the language to keep them alive. Perhaps this Calabrian I now speak with my father is the truly dead dialect, the language that neither changes nor translates.
Social Media Dating (Lou Beach)
SOCIAL MEDIA DATING: 15% had used social media to ask someone out on a date. “Getting to know someone through social media could be much more appealing than using traditional dating sites because it was possible to get a more realistic impression of a person. While profiles on dating sites are often carefully contrived, people tend to let more of their individuality and personalities come through casual interactions on Twitter and Instagram.”