Across the Northern Hemisphere, storm clouds are beginning to gather. Sure, it’s getting to be thunderstorm season, but trouble is brewing indoors as well. In workplace after workplace and home after home, there’s a fierce debate underway about the temperature at which the air conditioning should be set. There are those who seem to feel no temperature inside is too cold—even ones that would lead to the heat being turned on at a different time of year—and those for whom no temperature is too warm. How can those two groups be reconciled? With science. Research consistently shows that our brains seem to work best and we’re in our best moods when the thermostat is set to about 70 degrees Fahrenheit and indoor humidity levels are moderate. Being in a good mood is important because when we are our analytical reasoning, creativity , and ability to get along with others (just for starters) are better than when we're not. Anyone working or living in the modern era needs to know … [Read more...] about Setting the Scene by Setting the Temperature
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By the time the city of Wuhan in Hubei Province, China, was placed on lockdown on January 23rd, pictures were flooding the western media of Chinese citizens wearing medical masks during the early days of the COVID-19 outbreak. The photos reminded me of the ones coming out of China in 2002-03 during the SARS outbreak, which infected roughly 8,000 people and killed almost 800 before it was successfully contained. Given that 87 percent of reported SARS cases and 84 percent of deaths were in China and Hong Kong, like most Americans, I wasn’t worried about my safety or that of my friends and family during the SARS epidemic. There were only eight cases diagnosed in the United States, so I never considered wearing a mask, nor did I know that the practice would become more entrenched in Asia after the contagion had been quelled. It was already customary for Asians to wear a mask to protect others when they were sick, so wearing a mask was a given for them during the recent Covid-19 outbreak. … [Read more...] about Why Was Mask Wearing Popular In Asia Even Before Covid-19?