The Stranger The Better now on BizCatalyst360

Dennis Pitocco and BizCatalyst360 published The Stranger The Better, one of the chapters in my soon-to-be-released non-fiction The Th!nk You Do.

 

A fascinating piece of social research has made it to my desk. It deals with males’ success rate with females in typical mating situations.
To readers outside of social anthropology, this means “What can guys do to make sure girls notice them in bars, at clubs, in the mall, in the hall, in the cafeteria, at the dance, …?”
The research points out one of those things that’s obvious. So obvious, one might ask, “Somebody had to do research on this?”
Well, yes. Because when you think about it, it’s not what most guys do in typical mating situations and that’s probably why few males have the kind of success they want.

The Trick Is…

Let me know what you think.

Enjoy!

That Th!nk You Do Chapter 6 – Guys Can’t Help Themselves

For those who didn’t know, I’ve signed with a new publisher and my first book out with them, The Think You Do, should be available late Nov-Dec ’22.

Read:

As always, let me know what you think.


Guys Can’t Help Themselves

 
I have never accepted “Boys will be boys” as an excuse for socially unacceptable behavior. But have you noticed that the vast number of “acting out” news items involve males? Consider DUIs, fights, shouting matches, anything you care to recognize as “bad behavior” and the involvement of males greatly over shadows the involvement of females.

Why is that?

Well, to a certain degree it’s because guys can’t help themselves.

No, this is not an apologetic for bad behavior and I’m definitely not providing men a carte blanche. What I’m recognizing is that the wiring of the male brain makes it easier for them to behave badly. Women don’t have the same wiring.

And no, I’m not kidding. Research performed at John Hopkins and elsewhere is verifying yet another difference between males and females, another evolutionary difference in addition to the obvious sexual traits.

It works like this: cause humans to do something pleasurable and their brains release dopamine (the “pleasure molecule”). Well, duh!, right? But male brains release up to three times as much pleasure for a given stimulus as female brains do.

Three times as much? Well, heck. Sign me up right now, please.
Continue readingThat Th!nk You Do Chapter 6 – Guys Can’t Help Themselves”

That Th!nk You Do Chapter 5 – Rules of Competition

For those who didn’t know, I’ve signed with a new publisher and my first book out with them, The Think You Do, should be available late Nov-Dec ’22.

Read:

As always, let me know what you think.


Rules of Competition

 
NextStage did a bunch of political research during the ’08 Presidential race, and some of which appeared on my BizMediaScience blog. One of the questions that we still get with regularity involves the public’s perception of Senator Clinton versus Governor Palin.

The question being asked was asked about politics and the answer has little to do with politics. It really has to do with how people perceive another person’s hard work, ambition, drive, steadfastness, …, in a word, competitiveness, and especially how these traits are gender-biased. Thousands of years ago when I was in college a fellow told me that I was steadfast. “And that is a quality of the Lord,” he added. I responded, “I’m steadfast, you’re stubborn, and he’s too stupid to know any better.”

My response beyond being glib is a statement of psychological distance.

Let me give you an example. Steadfast, as in “holding to one’s beliefs”, is great when people share your beliefs. But if you don’t share my beliefs and I’m somehow stopping you from achieving your goals? Then perhaps my steadfastness is, to you, stubbornness. What if you have no opinions about my beliefs per se but believe I have no idea what I’m doing? Then perhaps I’m too stupid to know any better.

The above is a demonstration of a given trait being considered as a plus or minus based on psychological distance — how far one person’s beliefs are from another’s.

Competitiveness is interesting because it comes in two forms. Goal-directed competitiveness — where you compete against yourself to achieve a goal — has no psychological distance component. Interpersonal competitiveness — when you want to beat someone else — has a strong psychological distance component attached. Psychological distance comes into play when there’s recognizable winners and losers.

Public perception of an individual’s competitiveness is what gets votes. Both men and women think highly of people who are goal-directed, not so highly of people who are interpersonally competitive (probably because we don’t know when that competitive nature will be directed against us). And both men and women will create extreme psychological distance between an interpersonally competitive female but not so much towards an interpersonally competitive male, which is where gender-bias comes in.

Politicians get votes by demonstrating a balance between goal-directed and interpersonal competitiveness. Both Senator Clinton and Governor Palin are competitive — they are politicians, after all. Senator Clinton’s staff had a difficult task (whether they realized it or not) that they executed well (whether they realized it or not); Senator Clinton had to compete against her Democratic rivals and convince the public that she was goal-directed. Specifically, that her goal wasn’t the Presidency, her goal was to benefit the voters.

Governor Palin’s staff never managed to get her image out of the interpersonal side of competition. People who were undecided knew she was against the Democrats, but once you got past that, what were her goals? There was no goal-direction to balance her interpersonal competitiveness.

Oops.
Continue readingThat Th!nk You Do Chapter 5 – Rules of Competition”

That Th!nk You Do Chapter 4 – Change (which is Constant) and Managing the Work-Life Balance

For those who didn’t know, I’ve signed with a new publisher and my first book out with them, That Think You Do, should be available late Nov-Dec ’22.

Read:

As always, let me know what you think.


Change (which is Constant) and Managing the Work-Life Balance

 
Susan (wife, partner, all things known and unknown) and I are coming on our 25th wedding anniversary (note to readers: we just celebrated out 38th). We’ve been together for 31 years (now 44). I wrote our wedding vows:

I can not promise you fidelity, sanity, health, hope, love, comfort or joy. All I can promise is that I will change. Not all my changes will be good. I ask God’s help that not all will be bad.
I ask you today to be with me in my changes, to tell me when I am foolish, to heal me when I am sick, to love me when I forget to love, to give me hope when I have none to give, to give me comfort when I am cold and alone, to give me joy when all I know is sadness.
Stand with me the rest of my days. I have asked you to do this. I ask you again, here, before our friends and families. It is said before others, but the words are for you. I love you.

Nobody in the audience knew what the vows would be, not even the minister. People knew I’d written them and everyone assumed they’d be whimsical if not funny. I can’t tell you the number of people who’ve asked for copies of our vows since then.
Continue readingThat Th!nk You Do Chapter 4 – Change (which is Constant) and Managing the Work-Life Balance”

That Th!nk You Do Chapter 3 – Romancing Real Women … and I don’t have to write more because I’ve already got everybody’s attention

For those who didn’t know, I’ve signed with a new publisher and my first book out with them, That Think You Do, should be available late Nov-Dec ’22.

Read:

As always, let me know what you think.


Romancing Real Women … and I don’t have to write more because I’ve already got everybody’s attention

 
Men, pay attention:

Taunus swung the axe effortlessly, almost gracefully for a man his size. Up, over, down and the wood split evenly, almost willingly, cleaving cleanly in two and falling to either side of the stump he used as a brace. He took a neckerchief from his backpocket and wiped the sweat from his brow. Catching Raina staring at him, one hand raised to block the setting sun from blinding her, he smiled and pantomimed his circus-strongman origins at her until they both laughed.
Suddenly she screamed. A bear reared over Greya.
Greya, sitting in front of the cabin playing with the cornstalk doll Taunus made for her, turned.
The bear waived its forepaws over the child. Greya held her doll up towards the monster as if offering her toy to a friend.
Suddenly there was a silent blur and Taunus stood between Greya and the bear. Just stood. Unmoving. Calmly breathing. His dark eyes smiling at the bear. Raina heard his voice, low, soothing.
Greya giggled.
What was he saying, Raina wondered.
The bear lowered itself to all fours. It sniffed in Taunus’ direction, growled something — or said something, Raina couldn’t be sure — and trundled off.
Taunus turned and lifted Greya in his arms, tickled her until she laughed, kissed her, lowered her to her feet and nudged her in Raina’s direction. The child waddled off towards her mother.
Greya safely beside Raina, Taunus walked back to the woodpile. The sun glistened off his back, the old wounds receding as they realized today there would be no battle.

Or:

Taunus moved quietly but not so quietly Raina wasn’t warned of his approach as he left the surrounding wood.
What game today, she wondered. She kept her eyes closed and stretched on the blanket, enjoying the tickles of sunlight on her face. Behind her Greya cooed as she played with the cornstalk doll Taunus made for her.
Suddenly Raina felt her face in shadow. Small flowers gently took over the sunlight’s tickling role. She looked up to find Taunus kneeling beside her, showering her with petals of rose, oleander, and orange blossom.
His eyes echoed his words, “Every morning I wake and know there’s one more day of memories I have of you.”
He bent over her and she welcomed his soft, hesitant kiss. She pulled him closer, returning his kiss, letting them linger for a moment in the warmth of the setting sun, the warmth of their many years together.
Greya’s doll fell between them and the child giggled. They pulled away from each other, laughing and smiling.
Suddenly another shadow engulfed them all. A bear, rearing, waived its paws over them.
Taunus threw what petals remained in his hand at the bear. “Argos, old friend. Have you lost your honey?”
The bear fell to all fours, sneezed at the sun and trundled off.
“Greya,” said Raina. “Go find some honey for your pet. Father and I have things to discuss.”
Greya picked up her doll and waddled to where the bear waited, then the two of them went deeper into the surrounding wood.

Pick one that you think will get a woman’s attention.
Continue readingThat Th!nk You Do Chapter 3 – Romancing Real Women … and I don’t have to write more because I’ve already got everybody’s attention”