Calling it the iPosture, Amy Cuddy of The New York Times looks at studies showing how our physical posture when looking at a smartphone, not only is bad for us physically, but also has a detrimental effect on our mood. Reportedly, posture is a reflection of our emotional state and adopting that posture can put us in that states.
How else might iHunching influence our feelings and behaviors? My colleague Maarten W. Bos and I have done preliminary research on this. We randomly assigned participants to interact for five minutes with one of four electronic devices that varied in size: a smartphone, a tablet, a laptop and a desktop computer. We then looked at how long subjects would wait to ask the experimenter whether they could leave, after the study had clearly concluded. We found that the size of the device significantly affected whether subjects felt comfortable seeking out the experimenter, suggesting that the slouchy, collapsed position we take when using our phones actually makes us less assertive — less likely to stand up for ourselves when the situation calls for it.
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