Thursday, May 28, 2015

Clothes for cognition

Clothing makes the person... read on, this is not 1950 stuff

Now comes a study (with real data and observations, of course) that cognition -- our ability to think, innovate, understand, and present our ideas -- is a function of our clothing.
Cognition = f(clothing), in calculus terminology
(There may be a functional discontinuity when Clothing = 0, but that's a matter of context.)

Did you see this coming? I did not
We learn this about that here
“Putting on formal clothes makes us feel powerful, and that changes the basic way we see the world,” says Abraham Rutchick, an author of the study and a professor of psychology at California State University, Northridge. Rutchick and his co-authors found that wearing clothing that’s more formal than usual makes people think more broadly and holistically, rather than narrowly and about fine-grained details. In psychological parlance, wearing a suit encourages people to use abstract processing more readily than concrete processing.

And, there's more:
As casual attire becomes the norm in a growing number of workplaces, it would seem that the symbolic power of the suit will erode in coming years. [Co-author Michael] Slepian thinks the opposite. “You could even predict the effect could get stronger if formal clothing is only reserved for the most formal of situations,” he says. “It takes a long time for symbols and our agreed interpretations of those symbols to change, and I wouldn't expect the suit as a symbol of power to be leaving us anytime soon.”

Ok! I guess it's off to buy a suit, something I've not done in some years. I guess this means a tie (for men) also?
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