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One study says people aren’t as nice as they think


by: Sarah Elsesser, Palm Beach Post

LONDON – A new study by Goldsmiths, University of London revealed how nice people really are.

Psychologists found that 98 percent of British people think they fall within the 50 percent of the population’s nicest, according to The Independent.

The Guardian reported that the study of a pool of 100 participants was conducted on behalf of British low-cost airline Monarch and led by Johnathan Freeman, a psychology professor at the university.

While the majority of participants had a positive self-image, about two-thirds said they rarely, if ever, help carry shopping bags. Five-sixths infrequently give money to strangers, and just a quarter donate blood.

The people who ranked themselves as kind were wealthier, happier and better at dealing with stress and chaos, according to the study.

“We’re also looking at what makes people lose their nice,” Freeman said. “So what makes people snap? What’s the tipping point?”

A video from the airline posted to YouTube showed study participants had their microexpressions analyzed by a technology called FaceReader as they watched positive and negative scenes.

According to the study, rudeness, losing important documents and bad service ranked as the three biggest triggers for people to “lose their nice.”

Just because people think they are nice, however, doesn’t make it true.

“More than half of participants who rated themselves as the second-highest level of nice scored below the sample average on agreeableness. So people think they’re nicer than they really may be,” Freeman said.

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