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Inflated Self-Esteem Indicates Poor Brain Activity

Thursday, January 21st 2010. | Health

Researchers at the University of Texas, USA, have discovered that inflated self-esteem is associated with the insufficient activity of frontal lobes of the brain while healthy self-esteem is linked to higher activity in this brain area.

The researchers asked 20 subjects to rate themselves on how positive (in terms of modesty, tact, maturity and the like) they view themselves compared to their peers.  They were also given a questionnaire to rate their negative traits (materialism, messiness, narrow-mindedness unreliability and other). As the subjects filled their questionnaires, they had their brain activity scanned by magnetic resonance imaging.

Researchers say that a natural human tendency to view ourselves in positive light can be useful and even inspiring in some situations but harmful in others.

The findings may allow researchers to better understand brain functions in seniors or people who suffer from mental disorders such as depression as well as when dealing with drug addicts. The frontal lobes are often damaged by drug use so the addicts may overestimate their ability to fight their drug addiction.

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