Learning! Roundup: Laugh at Yourself and Have Better Sex, Wealthy Altruists, Hooking Up With Your Ex, and More!

A roundup of research and learning for the week, including the fact that people who like to laugh at themselves have better sex and relationships.
Photo by Natasha Kasim.

Laughing Your Way to Better Sex (and Relationships)

It looks like people who are comfortable laughing at themselves (and being teased by others) have better relationships and sex. This seems to be especially true for women, and conversely, men who enjoy laughing at others report lower enjoyment of their own relationships and sex lives. Also, here are some fun terms for you: gelotophobe (someone who is afraid of being laughed at), gelotophile (someone who enjoys being laughed at and may spur it on by telling embarrassing stories), and katagelasticists (people who enjoy laughing at others, even if it hurts their feelings).

Altruism For the Win

A new study gives credence to some of those hippy-dippy beliefs about the universe being generous to those who are generous: altruists tend to have more money, more children, and be happier than their more selfish counterparts.

Ex Hook Ups

We all know that hooking up with your ex is a bad idea, right? Well, new science says that it's pretty much fine. A study looking at couples who have recently broken up found that those who had sex after breaking up recovered from the relationship ending at a normal rate (measured as the same rate as those in the study who did not get it on with their exes). The sex even made them feel more positive about life overall.

Compassion and Chronic Pain

For those dealing with chronic pain, it looks like there could be benefits from having more compassion for themselves. In this case, self-compassion looks like accepting that the pain is a part of your life, that suffering in general is part of a shared human experience, and then avoiding over-identification with the suffering, pursuing desired activities in spite of it.

Living the Good Life with the Gender Gap

File this one under "subtly troubling and curious": when times are good in a society, the gender gap between men and women grows. Essentially, given the option and greater financial freedom, men and women make different career types of career choices. Of course, there are a number of factors that could explain this, beginning with and certainly not limited to the kind of values that are baked into men and women from birth.


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