If your boss is a jerk, there might be a scientific reason for it. A new study suggests feeling powerful dampens the part of the brain that helps us connect with others.
It turns out, feeling powerless boosted the mirror system — people empathized highly. But, Obhi says, “when people were feeling powerful, the signal wasn’t very high at all.” So when people felt power, they really did have more trouble getting inside another person’s head.
“What we’re finding is power diminishes all varieties of empathy,” says Dacher Keltner, a social psychologist at University of California, Berkeley, not involved in the new study. He says these results fit a trend within psychological research.
by CHRIS BENDEREV
See on www.npr.org