Simple embodied cognition hacks

by curiousepic1 min read23rd Mar 20117 comments


Human BodiesProductivityPractical

I've known that the mind can be affected by the body's actions, but I often forget this when sitting at my computer chair for long stretches, and when standing and interacting in social situations I've subconciously cultivated a passive, non-confrontational but minimally interactive posture.  But simple physical actions can act as a mild nootropic for certain situations.

Article with citations: 10 Simple Postures that Boost Performance

Article summary:

1. Take a powerful pose to feel powerful

2. Tense muscles for willpower

3. Cross arms for persistence

4. Lie down for insight

5. Nap for cognitive performance, vigour and wakefulness

6. Hand gestures for persuasion

7. Gesture to self for comprehension and memory

8. Smile for happiness

9. Mimic to empathize

10. Imitate for comprehension and prediction

6 comments, sorted by Highlighting new comments since Today at 3:07 AM
New Comment

Overall the concept of embodied cognition makes a lot of sense. Yoga and particularly martial arts give a lot of tools for embodied cognition. Particularly martial arts - these are all telegraphed gestures, in an adversarial mode it's not useful to advertise weaknesses. Changing weight balance and the subtle foot motions involved in shifting into a martial arts stance is less obvious and communicates strength to anyone able to notice.

Wow! 19 upvotes on the article and no comments!

Somehow I have this feeling like these two statistics should be correlated somehow. Does anyone have a theory as to why some things have many many comments and few upvotes while others have many upvotes and a miniscule number of comments? It confuses me and this post is a particularly dramatic example.

When one gives an oral presentation in an academic setting, if there are no questions at the end, it was either a perfect presentation or a perfectly awful one. In this case the post had no comments, but unlike in the case of an oral presentation, we don't have to guess how it was received. Kudos to curiousepic.

I can't speak for anyone else, but I upvote when I see something I want more of, and I comment when I have something to say. The two are not particularly well correlated, as far as I can tell, nor would I expect them to be.

The variable that links them is having read the post. I suspect that JenniferRM's confusion, which I share, stems from the belief that comment numbers and upvote numbers both indicate how much interest there is in the post, but in a case like this those two metrics conflict with each other.

[-][anonymous]10y 3

The former case makes a lot of sense if the issue is controversial or contentious, but I don't have a good hypothesis for the latter case. My guess is that people found the post useful or amusing but did not see (a) anything they wanted to argue with, or (b) anything they could expand upon. However, I don't have much confidence in this explanation because I am generalizing from one example (myself).

On a related note, I have noticed that making the first comment on a post generally nets you more upvotes than if you made the comment after many others have commented, probably because most people don't read every comment or get tired of upvoting by the time they get to the bottom.