Improve your work and life through science! Behavioral Grooves is a discussion of the positive application of behavioral science to work and life. It's the WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO podcast. Kurt Nelson, Ph.D., and Tim Houlihan interview leading researchers, academics, practitioners, and accidental behavioral scientists. Our conversations are lively, spontaneous, full of laughs, and insights into the science behind why we do what we do. We conclude each podcast with a grooving session, recorded after the interview, where we explore the science and reflect on the key takeaways from the interview and the topics we discussed.
How Do You Become Influential? Jon Levy Reveals His Surprising Secrets
Our guest, Jon Levy, is arguably one of the most influential behavioral scientists in the world. Over 10 years ago, Jon founded The Influencers Dinner, a secret dining experience for industry leaders ranging from Olympians, Nobel laureates, executives, to musicians. Over the course of the last decade, these dinners have developed into a wide community of influential people.
Our opening speed round with Jon did not disappoint. We learn his unique perspective on which Star Trek Captains was the best, and the surprising answer to who his dream guest was at one of his dinners.
In our discussion with Jon, he shares the secrets behind his influential approach: what motivated him to start this novel idea, how he developed it and the key steps behind the ongoing success of the community that he has curated.
Jon’s second book, “You’re Invited: The Art and Science of Cultivating Influence” https://amzn.to/2RmlUlA is released on May 11, 2021. Which follows his hugely successful first book: “The 2 AM Principle: Discover the Science of Adventure” https://amzn.to/3eS3p0m. We had the privilege of previewing his latest book for this interview and we were blown away by Jon’s unique approach to cultivating human connections through trust and community.
Of course, we discuss what music Jon has been listening to at home and we are surprised to learn what has recently sparked his musical interest. Jon has found that through his Influence Dinners, he has hosted a lot of his childhood pop idols, which he still enjoys listening to.
Thanks for listening and thank you for taking a minute to join the others who have already left us a review.
© 2021 Behavioral Grooves
Jon Levy's Books
You're Invited: The Art and Science of Cultivating Influence https://amzn.to/2RmlUlA
The 2 AM Principle: Discover the Science of Adventure https://amzn.to/3eS3p0m
Jon Levy https://www.jonlevytlb.com/
Peter Cullen (voice of Optimus Prime) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Cullen
James T. Kirk https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_T._Kirk
Jean-Luc Picard https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Luc_Picard
Neil deGrasse Tyson https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neil_deGrasse_Tyson
Sir Richard Branson https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Branson
Stephen Hawking https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Hawking
Mark Zuckerberg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Zuckerberg
Nicholas Christakis https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicholas_Christakis
James H. Fowler https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_H._Fowler
The Spread of Obesity in a Large Social Network over 32 Years
Christakis and Fowler (2007) https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmsa066082
Nike Run Club https://www.nike.com/gb/nrc-app
Bill Nye the Science Guy https://billnye.com/
The Daily Show https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Daily_Show
The New York Times: Want to Meet Influential New Yorkers? Invite Them to Dinner
SNVTA - Ventral tegmental area of the brain https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ventral_tegmental_area
Bill Gates https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Gates
Angela Merkel https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angela_Merkel
My Octopus Teacher https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Octopus_Teacher
United States Navy SEAL selection and training https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Navy_SEAL_selection_and_training
The IKEA Effect https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IKEA_effect#:~:text=The%20IKEA%20effect%20is%20a,of%20furniture%20that%20require%20assembly
Common Biases & Heuristics https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XHp
Why Music Makes You Feel Better with Pablo Ripollés and Ernest Mas Herrero
In this episode we are thrilled to be discussing our two favorite topics: human behavior and music. We learn that music, more than any other activity, can help lift our mood, during COVID. Our guests Pablo Ripollés PhD and Ernest Mas Herrero have spent years studying how the brain responds to rewards, learning and memory. Early in the pandemic, they decided to conduct research on a long list of activities that people were doing at home to manage their stress and increase the pleasure in their lives. While a number of the activities were found to help with mental health, the research overwhelmingly showed that engaging with music was the best way to lift your mood.
We have a really engaging conversation with Pablo and Ernest about their research findings on wellbeing and music. They believe that because listening to music is a passive activity and is so accessible, or “fun and free” as they call it, everyone can experience pleasure from it. And it’s not just listening to music; dancing, singing or playing music are all beneficial. We also learn that the best type of music to engage with is whatever music you really enjoy: “It will be beneficial as long as it is pleasurable.”
The questionnaire Pablo and Ernest discuss in the podcast is the Barcelona Music Reward Questionnaire http://brainvitge.org/z_oldsite/bmrq.php. It will take you only a few minutes to find out about your individual sensitivity to musical reward. And you can also read Pablo and Ernest’s full research article: “Rock ’n’ Roll but not Sex or Drugs: Music is negatively correlated to depressive symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic via reward-related mechanisms” https://psyarxiv.com/x5upn/.
Listen in to find out more from Pablo and Ernest about how music can benefit your mental wellbeing. And If you’d like to support the work we do at Behavioral Grooves bringing you interesting research insights, please consider becoming a Patreon member at https://www.patreon.com/behavioralgrooves.
© 2021 Behavioral Grooves
(5:20) Speed Round Questions
(8:44) Research Insights with Pablo and Ernest
(36:50) Grooving Session
(50:26) Bonus Track
Dropkick Murphys https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCcIRZxNH7xcEt1fu4pfqFRg
Catalan music https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjJnF95TWN8
Depeche Mode https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCM-CWGUijAC-8idv6k6Fygw
Aretha Franklin “Think” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HqYnevHibaI
“Rock ’n’ Roll but not Sex or Drugs: Music is negatively correlated to depressive symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic via reward-related mechanisms” Herrero et al (2020): https://psyarxiv.com/x5upn/
“Neural correlates of specific musical anhedonia” Martínez-Molina et al (2016): https://www.pnas.org/content/113/46/E7337
Pablo Ripollés: https://as.nyu.edu/faculty/pablo-ripolles.html
Ernest Mas Herrero: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3607-8489
Jamón ibérico https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jam%C3%B3n_ib%C3%A9rico
Lionel Messi https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lionel_Messi
Michael Jordan https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Jordan
Roger Federer https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roger_Federer
“Goal Gradient Theory” Kivetz et al (2006): https://home.uchicago.edu/ourminsky/Goal-Gradient_Illusionary_Goal_Progress.pdf
Robert Zatorre, PhD https://www.mcgill.ca/neuro/robert-zatorre-phd
Neomi Singer, PhD https://neuroscience-innovation.org/music-to-my-brain-neomi-singer
Laura Ferreri, University of Lyon https://emc.univ-lyon2.fr/laura-ferreri-785895.kjsp
Michael McPhee, NYU https://steinhardt.nyu.edu/people/michael-mcphee
Hedonia and anhedonia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anhedonia
Barcelona Music Reward Questionnaire http://brainvitge.org/z_oldsit
Share, Like, Comment: Sandra Matz PhD Exposes The Truth Behind your Digital Footprint
Our guest this week, Sandra Matz PhD exposes the truth behind our online presence. In our conversation, Sandra reveals that with simple analytics, the digital footprints we leave behind online (our Facebook Likes, our credit card transactions, our Google Map searches) add up to paint a very revealing picture of our personality and state of mind.
Sandra Matz PhD is an associate professor at Columbia Business School. She takes a Big Data approach to studying human behaviour. Her methodologies use psychology, computer science and data collection to explore the relationships between people’s psychological characteristics and their digital footprints.
Sandra’s work has been published in top-tier journals such as Psychological Science and the American Psychologist, and has attracted worldwide media attention from outlets like the Independent, the BBC, CNBC, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, and the World Economic Forum.
Our discussion delves into Sandra’s experience around social media profiles, digital ethics, data privacy and our understanding of informed consent. As always we find out about our guest’s musical taste but this week we even find out what our musical preferences can reveal about our personality and social identities.
We hope you enjoy our discussion with Sandra Matz PhD, and if you do, please leave us a quick review or join our Patreon team at https://www.patreon.com/behavioralgrooves.
3:04 Welcome to Sandra Matz PhD and speed round questions
4:52 Discussion about Sandra Matz’s Research
52:32 Grooving Session
1:10:37 Bonus Track with Kurt
Sandra Matz https://www8.gsb.columbia.edu/cbs-directory/detail/sm4409
Cambridge Analytica https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cambridge_Analytica
Cass Sunstein https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cass_Sunstein
Kate Crawford, NYU https://ainowinstitute.org/about.html
Helen Nissenbaum, Cornell https://nissenbaum.tech.cornell.edu/
Tory Higgins, Shared Reality: What Makes Us Strong and Tears Us Apart https://amzn.to/3aywWdW
Brene Brown https://brenebrown.com/
Steve Bannon https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Bannon
Behavioral Grooves @behavioralgroov https://twitter.com/behavioralgroov
Kurt @motivationguru https://twitter.com/motivationguru
Tim @THoulihan https://twitter.com/THoulihan
Mary @BeSciMary https://twitter.com/BeSciMary
Taylor Swift https://www.youtube.com/user/taylorswift
Justin Bieber https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIwFjwMjI0y7PDBVEO9-bkQ
Bob Dylan https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnRI0ay61tY-fKYzzB3fCnw
Britney Spears https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-u5WLJ9Yk4
Lady Gaga https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNL1ZadSjHpjm4q9j2sVtOA
3 Ways to have a Positive Chat About Vaccine Hesitancy with Friends and Family
Research is showing that there are four broad groups of people who are the most vaccine hesitant:
Women between the ages of 20 and 36
Rural Americans and Republicans
Many of us have a family or friend who feels hesitant about the vaccination. In this episode, Kurt and Tim address how you can have a positive conversation with them, using proven behavioral science techniques.
Listen with compassion
Be genuine with curiosity
Leverage the right messenger
Framing what you’re going to share
Think about their perspective
Find an authority figure who they respect
Change the social norm
Being able to take our masks off “Take a shot, take off your mask”
Personalise the message
Morgan Freeman https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morgan_Freeman
Kwame Christian https://behavioralgrooves.com/episode/kwame-christian-on-compassionate-curiosity-social-justice-conversations-and-cinnamon-toast-crunch/
Steve Martin & Joe Marks: BG episode
Robb Willer, Stanford University https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robb_Willer
Donald Trump https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Trump
Ivanka Trump https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivanka_Trump
Ted Cruz https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ted_Cruz
Frank Luntz https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Luntz
Robert Cialdini https://behavioralgrooves.com/episode/robert-cialdini-phd-littering-egoism-and-aretha-franklin/
The Petrified Forrest https://www.psychologytoday.com/gb/blog/the-shaping-us/201909/the-petrified-wood-principle
Katy Milkman https://behavioralgrooves.com/episode/katy-milkman-phd-using-behavior-change-for-good/
Surfacing norms to increase vaccine acceptance https://psyarxiv.com/srv6t/
© 2021 Behavioral Grooves
How a Compelling Story Packs a Persuasive Punch with Melanie Green
Dr. Melanie Green is a professor at the University of Buffalo. She joined us on the podcast to explain how the power of a compelling narrative, including the effects of fictional stories, can be used to change beliefs and attitudes. Her theory of "transportation into a narrative world" focuses on how immersive storytelling is a mechanism of narrative influence.
It was an in-depth conversation that explored concepts around how stories move us, the power of narrative to affect both cognitive and emotional feelings, and how restorative narratives can be used to help heal communities after disasters. We touch on the psychological response of reactance, the appeal of conspiracy theory stories and the elements needed to create a compelling story.
We also introduce - in a slightly more proper fashion - our production and research assistant, Mary Kaliff. We are excited to introduce Mary to our listeners and hope you will welcome her with a happy greeting on social media!
Finally, no episode of Behavioral Grooves would be complete without understanding our guest’s musical tastes. Melanie’s upbringing in Gainesville, Florida influenced her lifelong love of music, in particular the hometown hero, Tom Petty. She’s also a fan of James Taylor, which delighted Tim. More recently, Melanie’s house is often filled with the sound of the Hamilton soundtrack, thanks to her children’s love of the musical, which delighted Kurt. So, it was wins all around.
We hope you enjoy our conversation with Melanie and if you like it, please jump down to the bottom of your listening app and share a quick rating or a short review with us. It goes a long way in helping others decide if they should listen to Behavioral Grooves.
1:00 Hello from Mary Kaliff
3:46 Welcome and Speed Round with Melanie Green
7:44 Reactance and empathy
16:25 What makes a good story?
22:26 Storytelling in different mediums
27:12 Parasocial Interaction
33:10 Storytelling for social good
38:50 Conspiracy Theories
43:07 Melanie’s music and playlist
47:30 Grooving Session
(14:13) If you do have a story that's not representative, the danger of it kind of having an undue influence on people's thinking and decision making is, I think, a real one, especially with something consequential, like these medical decisions.
(18:21) the way that stories can inform us and change our minds, is through this process of being immersed in them.
(31:17) And so a story can be a really nice kind of way of summarizing and illustrating the guiding principles maybe that people want the organization to follow
(33:37) restorative narratives tell those stories, you know, how people move from something bad to kind of come back to a better place.
To listen to more podcasts about narratives and messages why not delve into these episodes:
© 2021 Behavioral Grooves
Melanie Green: https://www.buffalo.edu/cas/communication/faculty/green.html
The Game of Thrones: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Game_of_Thrones
Story telling Mirrors in the Brain: https://www.michaelharvey.org/new-blog/2019/12/29/storytelling-mirrors-in-the-brain
Victoria Shaffer, PhD: https://psychology.missouri.edu/people/shaffer
The Bible: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bible
The Koran: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quran
The Bhagavad Ghita: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhagavad_Gita
Pamela Rutledge: https://www.pamelarutledge.com/
Guy Schoenecker: https://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2016/12/07/life-story-guy-schoenecker/
BI WORLDWIDE: https://www.biworldwide.com/careers/
Common Biases & Heuristics: https://docs.google.com/document/d
Secrets of Subtraction: Donut Holes, Lego and Bruce Springsteen with Leidy Klotz
Leidy Klotz is the Copenhaver Associate Professor of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Virginia. His research fills in underexplored overlaps between engineering and behavioral science, in pursuit of more sustainable environmental systems. He has published over 70 peer-reviewed articles in venues that include top academic journals in built environment engineering, engineering education, and design, as well as imprints of both Science and Nature.
We explored the rarity of subtraction from our lives and the fact that we tend to add things much more than we remove things. Granted, we’ve been builders of things since the dawn of civilization, but when is enough, enough? Leidy suggested we begin any initiative by subtracting before we start adding.
We traced the concept from Lao Tzu through DaVinci through Kurt Lewin and right up into today’s literature with Marie Kondo and Tim Ferriss. But Leidy’s thoughts are truly fresh because he is adding to this historical narrative with scientific data. He offered us fresh ways to think about this uphill battle with our natural desires.
We also discussed Leidy’s view of the Planetary Tipping Point: where our very fixed-resource planet gets maxed out by humans with an unlimited desire for more. And we were pleased to talk about Kurt Lewin and his force-field analysis and, as you might expect, we enthusiastically discussed Bruce Springsteen as a prolific and gifted writer.
We hope you enjoy our discussion with Leidy Klotz, and if you do, please leave us a quick review or join our Patreon team at https://www.patreon.com/behavioralgrooves.
Leidy Klotz, PhD: https://engineering.virginia.edu/faculty/leidy-klotz
Harry Potter Lego Set - Hogwarts https://www.lego.com/en-us/search?q=harry%20potter%20hogwarts
Wildlife Bingo https://www.nature-watch.com/wildlife-bingo-game-p-176.html
Michael Jordan https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Jordan
Bruce Springsteen https://brucespringsteen.net/
Mayan City of Coba https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coba
Marie Kondo https://konmari.com/
Tim Ferris https://tim.blog/
Da Vinci https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonardo_da_Vinci
Lao Tzu https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laozi
Allison Zelkowitz https://www.linkedin.com/in/allison-zelkowitz-197431a/?originalSubdomain=lb
Chaning Jang https://www.busaracenter.org/staff-bios/chaning-8f39x
Kurt Lewin https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kurt_Lewin
Kate Orff, Lexington Waterway Project https://www.scapestudio.com/people/kate-orff/
Dan Ariely “Predictably Irrational” https://danariely.com/books/predictably-irrational/
Roger Dooley “Friction” https://www.rogerdooley.com/books/friction/
Bruce Springsteen “Darkness On The Edge Of Town” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kg0ekQBmzKs
Bruce Springsteen “Born In The USA” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EPhWR4d3FJQ
Bruce Springsteen “Western Stars” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_IXzAAKrsFE
Bruce Springsteen “Letter to You” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQyLEz0qy-g
3:20 Leidy’s 6-year-old son answers a speed round question
4:34 Speed round with Leidy
7:14 Leidy’s book - Subtraction
24:00 Planetary tipping points
26:15 Kurt Lewin force field theory
29:28 Kate Orff Lexington Waterways Project
33:40 Subtraction checklist
(8:10) we're doing these mental searches for solutions, and our mind goes to additive solutions before it goes to subtractive ones.
(12:01) as people are trying to change things from how they are to how they want them to be, we systematically think of adding first and then, only subsequently or with effort or with reminders, think of subtraction
(35:15) so often we ki
Not only do you learn a lot about BeSci but you learn so much more. I love the casual conversations with so much personal background too. It’s a regular must listen.
Great Balance Between Insight and Entertainment
Tim and Kurt do a wonderful job weaving in behavioral insights in a fun and engaging way!!
Great insights while I laugh
Tim and Kurt have such a nice chemistry between them as well as with their guests that I don’t even realize that I’m learning as I listen. It’s just like I’m part of a really fun, really interesting conversation. I love the growing session as well - always a great recap with a different spin!