While my very stylish wife and I were cleaning out our closet the other day, she lovingly (yet firmly) reminded me that people have a tendency to get stuck in the fashion era when they look their best. This makes a lot of sense based on how the brain works – we tend to stick with whatever gives us the most positive feedback because neurological reinforcement turns pleasurable behaviors into unconscious drives.
While this mental process may have had past evolutionary advantages (“Grog think meat taste good, Grog want more meat!”), there is also a downside. A few well-meaning but misplaced compliments such as “Hey Jenny, those tiger-striped slacks look great with your saber tooth earrings,” and before you know it, Jenny is doomed to never pass along her jeans or genes for that matter.
So after waving goodbye to a perfectly good pair of brown pleated pants (that still fit, mind you), I started wondering, “Where else does this mental mechanism occur?”