Why human decisions are emotional, not logical

We all make decisions on an everyday basis – from finances, time-management, who to love, and even who to do business with. Have you ever been in a situation where you presented the best possible offer to someone, but they just didn’t fall for it? You constructed the perfect argument, backed it up with the facts, in such a way that there was no other logical solution (or proposition). But still, the person making the decision didn’t think so – or so it seems.

When negotiators sit down to mediate a conflict and hammer a deal, they arm themselves with facts and attempt to use logic to sway decisions by involved parties. They reason that by piling up data to explain various sides of the situation, they can easily create a solution that’s irrefutable – so that the involved parties say yes!

But they’re doomed to fail. Why? Decision making isn’t logical, it’s emotional. And that’s backed up by the latest research in neuroscience.

Antonio Damasio, a neuroscientist, recently made a ground shaking discovery. He analyzed people who suffered damage in the region of the brain responsible for generating emotions. These people appeared to be very normal, only that they weren’t able to feel emotions. They also had something very peculiar in common – an inability to make decisions. They had no difficulties logically explaining what they were doing. But when it came to making decisions – even the simplest ones such as what to drink – it was very hard.

Based on this study, neuroscientists have realized that emotions play a major role when it comes to making decisions. Even when people are making what they believe to be logical decisions, the major decision point is always based on emotions. This finding has a profound impact not only on negotiators but also everyone else. Individuals who think that they can just build a case through reason alone are very likely to fail. Logic usually relies on opinions, assumptions and guesses. However, when negotiating something, you can never really assume that the other person will see things in the same way as you do.

It’s not a good idea to tell your opponent what’s best – or what to think. What you can do is help them discover for themselves. Discover what feels best and most beneficial to them. Everyone makes the final decision about anything based on self-interest, and that is emotional. It’s about what’s best for them and their side. This understanding has often been used by marketers and lots of other professionals. It also explains, to an extent, why people fall in love with the unlikeliest fellows. Despite what everyone else is thinking, they make the decision because they feel it’ll be the most advantageous thing to do for themselves.

Strange psychological reasons why people fall in love

Maybe it’s destiny. Maybe it’s not.

But science says that love happens due to your hormones, how your parents look like, and what interests you. This article highlights some strange psychological reasons why people fall in love.

Being alike

When it comes to love, decades of research have demonstrated that the cliché ‘opposite attract’ is way off. Partners who are similar (in broad terms, e.g. personality), are more likely to feel the same! This makes it super easy for them to understand each other!

Resemblance to parent of opposite sex

According to David Perrett, a psychologist at St. Andrews University, people are often attracted to others who have eye color and hair that resembles their parents. The age range of the parents at their time of birth also plays a role. For instance, women who were born to parents over 30 years of age often are less impressed by the youth. They are more attracted to the age qualities in male faces.

The smell

When women are ovulating, they naturally preferred the smell of clothing from men who had higher testosterone levels. They also had a preference for men who had a strong jaw line. This is based on a study carried out by the University of Southern California.

Body language

Posture says more about a potential suitor than words do. People who keep their hands inside their pockets, and their shoulders bending inwards, send the message that they have no interest. On the other hand, standing in an open stance with your hands being part of the action is an expression of availability.

Voice level

Men’s voices go up when they are attracted to a potential mate, while women’s go down.


Men who are tall happen to make more money. They also enjoy a significant advantage when it comes to dating. That’s according to a psychologist at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute.

Thrilling activities

Doing something thrilling together is one of the weird psychological reasons why people fall in love. That’s why riding a roller coaster, doing bike rides or anything other exciting activity works great for first dates.

Where you live

When people live close to each other, this increases chances that they’ll feel closer to each other. This can be attributed to the numerous passive interactions that they make (e.g. passing each other in a hallway) which makes them feel more intimate. In psychological circles, this is referred to as mere exposure effect. It means that familiarity has a huge role to play towards attraction.

Beautiful home

We have all heard that women like men with nice cars. But this is also applicable for nice homes. A study demonstrated that men who were photographed in luxury apartments appeared more attractive to female subjects than those who were photographed in the standard apartment.

Smiling a lot

Swiss researchers found out that the intensity of a smile is often used to gauge the attractiveness of a face. Indeed, a happy expression on the face somewhat compensates for unattractiveness.