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Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Lost contact with someone? reach out – your friend will appreciate it more than you think

Research Briefs are brief information about interesting academic work.

big idea

The next time you’re wondering whether to approach a friend, family member, classmate or other person who has been out of touch for a long time, go ahead and do it. According to our recently published research, it’s likely that they’ll appreciate it more than you think.

In a series of 13 experiments involving more than 5,900 participants, we – along with colleagues from Seon Rim and Kate Min – wanted to test whether people accurately predicted how much they appreciated reaching out to their social contacts. Is performed.

In an experiment we conducted, college students wrote a note to “check in and say hello” to a classmate with whom they hadn’t interacted for a while. Then we asked him how much he thought his classmates would appreciate receiving this note.

Next, we passed these notes to their classmates and asked the recipients how much they appreciated receiving them.

We found that the students who received the notes were more appreciative of the gesture than the students who wrote them down.

Other experiments included older adults instead of college students as participants, turning the written message into a small gift – such as cookies or coffee – and comparing whether the sender underestimated the praise that was emotionally charged. will feel compared to distant contact. close contact.

Overall they obtained the same basic finding: People tended to underestimate how much others appreciated hearing from them.

What drives this underestimation? Our results suggest that this is related to how little is reaching factors in the surprise felt by the people being contacted. When we asked recipients what they focused on, indicating how appreciative they felt, they reported paying a lot of attention to their positive feelings of wonder, which was related to how appreciative they felt.

By comparison, potential senders did not report focusing more on the recipients’ positive feelings of surprise.

It also mattered whether the two sides were already in a close relationship. Underestimation of people was even greater when their contact was a distant acquaintance because these recipients were particularly surprised when contacted.

why it matters

Many people can name at least one person they want to reconnect with. Taking on a new job, moving to another city, becoming a parent, or the busyness of everyday life – these are just some of the life events and situations that can cause people to lose touch. Then, if one side creates a desire to reconnect, doubts can arise about whether the other person might appreciate being approached out of the blue.

When people consider taking the initiative to make contact, especially after being without contact for a long time, they may worry about being rejected. This worry can keep them from getting there in the first place.

Our research mitigates this challenge by showing that often, these gestures will be appreciated much more than expected.

What other research is being done

Our findings fit within a growing stream of research examining the tendency to underestimate others’ appreciation of various social interactions. For example, other researchers have found that people underestimate how much others appreciate receiving praise or expressions of gratitude.

Our work connects this field by broadening the range of contexts in which people underestimate how much social exchange is appreciated. Reaching out may not require giving praise or expressing gratitude – gestures can be as simple as checking in with someone to show that someone is thinking of them.

World Nation News Desk
World Nation News Deskhttps://worldnationnews.com/
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