Sunday, March 1, 2020

Erotic dreams occurred in about 6% of the analyzed dreams, with men reporting slightly more erotic dreams than women; kissing was the most frequent erotic component

College students’ erotic dreams: Analysis of content and emotional tone. C. Geißler, M. Schredl. Sexologies, Volume 29, Issue 1, January–March 2020, Pages e11-e17.

Summary: The present study reports about the frequency, content and emotional tone of erotic dreams based on dream diary reports of a German college student sample. Four hundred and twenty-five students provided 1612 dreams, of which about 6% contained erotic themes, a figure which is in line with previous research. As for the dream content, kissing was the most frequent erotic activity, followed by intercourse and explicit sexual foreplay. Openness to experience is positively related to the frequency of erotic dreams; neuroticism and conscientiousness are associated with a rather negative emotional tone of such dreams. This supports the continuity hypothesis stating that erotic dreaming experience reflects waking life sexual activity, which is likely to be influenced by these personality dispositions. Further research should extend the knowledge of the aspects and emotional intensity of waking life sexual activity and their reflection in erotic dream content, i.e., whether experiencing unwanted and negatively perceived sexual events are associated with the emotional tone of erotic dreams. To investigate the causality of the relation between waking and dreaming sexual activity and the emotions related to it, an experimental study would be a necessary approach.

Keywords: Erotic dreamsOpenness to experienceNeuroticismConscientiousnessContinuity hypothesisDream emotions

Check also A kiss is not just a kiss: kissing frequency, sexual quality, attachment, and sexual and relationship satisfaction. Dean M. Busby,Veronica Hanna-Walker &Chelom E. Leavitt. Sexual and Relationship Therapy, Jan 31 2020.


Erotic dreams occurred in about 6% of the analyzed dreams, with men reporting slightly more erotic dreams than women. The Big Five scale ‘openness to experiences’ correlated positively with the frequency for the appearance of sexual motifs in dreams. As for the dream content, kissing was the most frequent erotic component, followed by intercourse and explicit sexual foreplay. In the majority of dreams, dreamers were actively taking part in the sexual event; those participants solely observing the erotic acts were mostly men. Regarding the emotional component of the erotic dreams, the judges rated the majority of the erotic dreams as emotionally toned (70%) with a small preponderance of positively toned dreams. Moreover, women's erotic dream activities were judged to be emotionally more negative than men's erotic dream activities. The Big Five scales neuroticism and conscientiousness are significantly negatively associated with the emotional tone of the erotic dream.
Before discussing each of the findings, some methodical issues have to be addressed. First, the low number of erotic dreams can cause unrepresentative results regarding erotic content, which have to be confirmed using a larger sample with a broader age range. The study did not focus on specific aspects of dreaming experience and therefore our sample should not underlie any selection bias for erotic topics. Since the majority of the participants were psychology students, the means of the NEO-PI-R scales differed from the norms presented by Ostendorf and Angleitner (2004) leading to higher scores in openness to experiences and neuroticism.
It should also be mentioned that the length of the dream has an increasing effect on the frequency of erotic topics since dream length increases any dream content variables independently of their context or meaning. As Schredl (1999) showed, different content elements (e.g., the number persons or the amount of bizarre or unrealistic elements) are positively associated with the dream's word count. The same effect was found for the analysis of dream emotions, positive as well as negative ones (Schredl, 1999). Therefore, it is crucial for the interpretation of the content analyses to control for the dream length statistically as was performed in this study. In general, the reliability between the raters for dream elements, including emotional tone, was satisfying. For two items, S2 (sexual overtures) and S4 (fore-play), Cohen's κ was considerably lower than for the other categories. It seems much harder to identify these two erotic actions, likely because they are not as explicitly and clearly operationalized as, for example, S5 (actual or attempted intercourse). As a result, it may be harder to interpret findings about these subtypes of erotic dream content.
The ratings regarding the emotional tone of the erotic dreams were conducted by external judges, not by the participants themselves. Since participants might not be comfortable fully expressing their emotions on erotic aspects, they might not record all erotic emotions. Therefore, it is likely for the external judges to underestimate the emotionality of the dream content as reported previously for emotions in general (Schredl and Doll, 1998Sikka et al., 2014). In consideration of the aforementioned methodical aspects, the findings of this study will be discussed and put into the context of previous research.
The frequency of erotic dreams found in this sample is in line with previous findings in diary studies using college student samples (Domhoff et al., 2005–2006Hall and Van de Castle, 1966Nielsen et al., 2003Rainville and Rush, 2009Schredl et al., 1998Zadra and Gervais, 2011). The tendency of men having more erotic dream than women fits with the findings of this study, though the effect size (d = 0.041) is considerably smaller when compared to the mean effect size of the aforementioned studies (d = 0.106). A decreasing gender difference leads to the conclusion that the difference between the findings in older studies as Hall and Van De Castle's (1966) and the finding of the recent study is caused by a cohort effect.
The frequency of erotic dreams is increased for participants with a high score on the ‘openness to experience’ scale. A person scoring high on this scale is described as curious, creative, empathic, and sensitive (Ostendorf and Angleitner, 2004). With regard to sexuality, a person with high openness to experience tends to be younger when having their first sexual intercourse (Miller et al., 2004) and is more permissive with pornography and masturbation (Fernandez and Rodriguez, 2003). High openness to experience is related to a disposition for erotophilia, i.e., he or she generally reacts positively to sexual cues (Natividade and Hutz, 2016). The participants scoring high on this scale reflecting more sexuality in their dreaming experience supports the continuity hypothesis (Schredl, 2003), since being open for experiences in general seems to implicate being open for sexual experiences. Schredl et al. (2003) found that openness to experiences is also positively associated with dream recall frequency, so it is possible for the sample of reported dreams to overestimate the frequency of erotic dreams as there may be more erotic dreams reported by participants with high openness scores. Therefore, dream recall frequency was controlled for in this study.
The content analysis of this sample's dreams differs in some aspects from the Hall and Van de Castle sample (1966). The largest of the differences appears in the frequency of kissing in erotic dreams; more than half of the erotic dreams contained this motif in the recent sample, while it occurred only in 16% of Hall and Van De Castle's (1966) and in 23% of King et al.’s (2009) sample. King et al.’s (2009) study used the Most Recent Dream method, where participants are asked to write down the most recent erotic dream they could recall. In this context, participants might be biased to report explicit sexual behavior and not so likely erotic activities like kissing. As for the comparison with Hall and Van De Castle's (1966) results, no clear methodic or content-related aspect can be identified to cause this divergence.
In order to investigate the differences in erotic dream content of today's college students compared to those in the mid-20th century, it has to be analyzed how waking life sexual activity today differs from that in the late 1940s since waking life sexuality is responsible for the content of dreaming sexuality (King et al., 2009Schredl et al., 2009). The high percentages found by Hall and Van de Castle (1966) for sexual thoughts and fantasies could not be replicated by King et al. (2009) or the present results. Overall, it is noticeable that explicit sexual events taking place in erotic dreams are more frequent than thoughts and propositions. An explanation for this finding might be that the more explicit activity, e.g., intercourse, is emotionally more intense in waking life compared, for example to kissing, the more often it occurs in dreaming (Malinowski and Horton, 2014Schredl, 2006).
When being rated for their active participation in sexual events while dreaming in comparison to observing said action, most participants reported themselves directly participating in the erotic events. (Crépault et al., 1977Crépault and Couture, 1980) showed in his analyses of men and women's sexual (waking life) fantasies that, most of the time, the fantasies included themselves interacting with some part of their environment. This, again, supports the continuity hypothesis for thoughts and fantasies, stating that our waking life thoughts are reflected in the contexts of our dreams (Schredl, 2012). As men dream less often about actively engaging in sexual action than women, one possible explanation might be the frequency of pornography consumption and a higher tendency to engage in voyeurism, which is more common in young men compared to young women (Hald, 2006Rye and Meaney, 2007). Men could thus be more used to watching others than themselves participating in sexual activity and therefore transfer this into their erotic dreaming experience. It would be interesting to investigate to what extent pornography and the active participation in erotic dreaming activity are related.
Similar to the study of King et al. (2009), erotic activities in dreams were rated by the external raters as emotionally balanced. Both neuroticism and conscientiousness are negatively associated with this emotional valence. A person scoring high on the neuroticism scale is described as anxious, nervous, insecure, and vulnerable (Ostendorf and Angleitner, 2004); with regard to sexuality, men and women with high neuroticism scores show a higher tendency for relationship infidelity, especially in women (Natividade and Hutz, 2016Schmitt, 2004). Cheating on a partner and participating in sexual activity outside a relationship could lead to more negative experiences, cognitions and emotions about sex, which are reflected in the content of the dreams (Thompson, 1984). In line with this finding, dreams of persons with high neuroticism scores tend to contain more negative emotions such as sadness and apprehension in dreams (Gilchrist et al., 2007).
A person that scores high for conscientiousness, on the other hand, is characterized as reliable, ambitious, self-controlled, hardworking and lives up to moral principles (Jackson et al., 2010Ostendorf and Angleitner, 2004). Natividade and Hutz (2016) reported a negative correlation of conscientiousness with the erotophilia scale, implicating negative associations with sexual cues and, thus, the erotophobic attitude could transfer into negative dream emotions. It is also possible for a person scoring high in conscientiousness to rate their experienced emotions related to erotic activities during the dream retrospectively, as he or she is more likely to react negatively to that internal sexual cue (Natividade and Hutz, 2016). Apart from that, a person scoring high on conscientiousness is very unlikely to cheat on their partner (Schmitt, 2004). It would be of some interest to measure whether unfaithfulness that occurred in this group fostered negative associations (i.e., guilt) with sexuality that can be reflected in erotic dreams. Just like King et al. (2009), the results of this study do not show a significant effect of the participant's sex on the perception of the emotional tone of erotic dreams. Descriptively however, men's dreams were rated rather positively, fitting with the finding that men tend to initiate the sexual contact while women were more likely to describe the erotic action as at least partly unwanted (Zadra and Gervais, 2011). King et al. (2009) report that nearly 8% of the reported sex dreams contained or mentioned ideas of rape or forced sex; all those dreams appeared solely in women's dreams. Since women have a greater prevalence for being victims to sexual harassment, sexual abuse or rape, the continuity hypothesis explains an incorporation of these negative sexual experiences into dreaming (Blumenthal, 1998Pino and Meier, 1999Ullman and Filipas, 2005).
To summarize, openness to experience is positively related to the frequency of erotic dreams; neuroticism and conscientiousness are associated with a rather negative emotional tone of the erotic dreams. This supports the continuity hypothesis (Schredl, 2003) stating that erotic dreaming experience reflects waking life sexual activity, which is likely to be influenced by these personality dispositions. For further research, it would be of interest to extend the knowledge on the aspects and emotional intensity of waking life sexual activity and their reflection in erotic dream content, i.e., whether experiencing unwanted and negatively perceived sexual events are associated with the emotional tone of erotic dreams. In this context, it would be of advantage to let the participants rate their erotic dreams for emotionality themselves as it is likely for them to be more precise in this task than an independent rater. To investigate the causality between waking and dreaming sexual activity and the emotions related to sexuality, an experimental study (Cartwright et al., 1969), such as showing an explicit erotic movie or instructing the participants to engage in sexual fantasies before bedtime, would be necessary. In addition, possible interactions between incorporating erotic material into the dream and openness to experiences could be examined.

Body odor disgust sensitivity is positively related to social, but not economic conservatism, & to implicit bias toward an outgroup; social attitudes may be linked to basic chemosensory processes (pathogen cues)

An Overprotective Nose? Implicit Bias Is Positively Related to Individual Differences in Body Odor Disgust Sensitivity. Marta Zuzanna Zakrzewska et al. Front. Psychol., February 28 2020.

Abstract: Body odors are universal elicitors of disgust, a core emotion that plays a key role in the behavioral immune system (BIS) – a set of psychological functions working to avoid disease. Recent studies showed that body odor disgust sensitivity (BODS) is associated with explicit xenophobia and authoritarianism. In the current experimental pre-registered study (, we investigated the association between olfactory pathogen cues, BODS and implicit bias toward an outgroup (tested by an implicit association test). Results show that BODS is positively related to implicit bias toward an outgroup, suggesting that social attitudes may be linked to basic chemosensory processes. These attitudes were not influenced by background odors. Additionally, BODS was related to social, but not economic conservatism. This study extends the BIS framework to an experimental context by focusing on the role of disgust and body odors in shaping implicit bias.


In the current preregistered study, we found that disgust sensitivity to body odors (BODS) is related to implicit bias toward an outgroup. This result corroborates and extends previous findings about the relationship between BODS, a BIS-related measure (Liuzza et al., 2017), and attitudes toward outgroups (Zakrzewska et al., 2019). These findings strengthen the view that some individuals may have a more sensitive BIS which makes them prefer behaviors and attitudes that limit contact with out-groups.
Contrary to our hypothesis, implicit bias was not influenced by a background body-like unpleasant odor. We need to point out two possible drawbacks of the paradigm used in our study. First, the odors were presented constantly over the duration of an experimental block. This might have resulted in habituation (Smeets and Dijksterhuis, 2014) to the smell, and suppression of its effect, although similar studies in our lab has shown no evidence of habituation (Syrjänen et al., 20172019). To confirm the null effect of odors (or to find evidence for its existence), further research is needed where odor cues are brief and paired with each target stimulus (as they are in a priming task) rather than serving as background odors. Research shows that congruency effects can be observed on a single trial level through priming, also in the olfactory modality (e.g. Olofsson et al., 2014Kastner et al., 2016). Second, we did not use actual body odors but odors that resemble them. However, valeric acid is present in body odor, especially in disease (Pandey and Kim, 2011Shirasu and Touhara, 2011), and the substance has been widely used as sweat-like odor in other studies (e.g. Anderson et al., 2003Jacob et al., 2003). What may be of more importance is that the smell was not presented in a way suggesting that it came from another person. Again, we believe that a cue – target priming design could help reveal the influence of odor on group biases. In hindsight, although we did not find any odor effects, we think that similar studies would benefit from having not only a body-odor related unpleasant odor, but also another, non-bodily yet unpleasant odor, thus allowing to talk more directly about body odor disgust.
Even though the theoretical framework emphasizes the role body odors and body-odor related disgust we would like to acknowledge a potential limitation of our study in drawing conclusions about the effect of body odors. Namely, BODS is the only measure of disgust we used. While comparing BODS with other disgust measure (such as DS-R or TDDS) we could have potentially shown an olfaction-specific link between disgust sensitivity and implicit bias. However, previous study (Liuzza et al., 2017) showed that BODS is correlated with both DS-R and TDDS (0.37 > = r < = 0.65) while at the same time being more strongly related to PVD than to the other measures, pointing to the relevance of body odor disgust sensitivity (BODS) for pathogen avoidance. Thus, we believe that although including another measure of disgust could have strengthened our claims, we would not have gained much more valuable information.
Faulkner et al. (2004) showed elevated BIS activation and IAT bias for a task evoking danger (rather than general unpleasantness), yet we did not find this effect for our disease-related IAT. In fact, the two versions of the IAT were highly correlated in the current sample. Since health/illness-related words are also strongly valenced, the lack of task version effect might be explained by a difficulty to differentiate between the strength of the target group to a health/illness concept, vs. the target group to a positive/negative concept associations, especially given the relatively small sample.
Lastly, our results should be viewed in the light of the dual process framework. We could not replicate our previous findings on US samples (Liuzza et al., 2018), where we found a stable, small-to-medium relationship between RWA and BODS. It is possible that our sample, including Swedish college students, is not representative of all ranges of authoritarian attitudes (only two observations fell above the theoretical midpoint of the RWA scale). However, it should be noted that, when comparing nationally representative samples and convenience samples, Aarøe et al. (2017) found almost identical correlation coefficients for the association between individual differences in disgust sensitivity and social attitudes. By including these new data to update previous observations from Liuzza et al. (2018), we found that the previous positive relationship between BODS and RWA is still credible. Additionally, current results show a relationship between BODS and another measure of social conservatism, namely the SDS. These relationships can be explained in the light that RWA, SDS and BODS can be related to avoidance of possible pathogen threats, in the world perceived as a dangerous place. Similarly to Liuzza et al. (2018) we found no relationship between BODS and a measure of social dominance (SDO), which refers more to the perception of the world as a competitive jungle and is thus connected to other sources of prejudice, not related to disease avoidance.
Taken together, this study extends current knowledge about odor disgust and BIS with evidence suggesting that social attitudes may be linked to basic chemosensory processes.

Lucid Dreaming, Nightmares and Sleep Paralysis: Associations with Reality Testing Deficits and Paranormal Experience/Belief

Lucid Dreaming, Nightmares and Sleep Paralysis: Associations with Reality Testing Deficits and Paranormal Experience/Belief. Kenneth G. Drinkwater,  Andrew Denovan and  Neil Dagnall. Front. Psychol., Feb 28 2020, doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00471

Abstract: Focusing on lucid dreaming, this paper examined relationships between dissociated experiences related to rapid eye movement sleep (lucid dreaming, nightmares, and sleep paralysis), reality testing, and paranormal experiences/beliefs. The study comprised a UK-based online sample of 455 respondents (110 males, 345 females, Mean age = 34.46 years, SD = 15.70), who had all previously experienced lucid dreaming. Respondents completed established self-report measures assessing control within lucid dreaming, experience and frequency of nightmares, incidence of sleep paralysis, proneness to reality testing deficits (Inventory of Personality Organization subscale, IPO-RT), subjective experience of receptive psi and life after death (paranormal experience), and paranormal belief. Analysis comprised tests of correlational and predictive relationships between sleep-related outcomes, IPO-RT scores, and paranormal measures. Significant positive correlations between sleep and paranormal measures were weak. Paranormal measures related differentially to sleep indices. Paranormal experience correlated with lucid dreaming, nightmares and sleep paralysis, whereas paranormal belief related only to nightmares and sleep paralysis. IPO-RT correlated positively with all paranormal and sleep-related measures. Within the IPO-RT, the Auditory and Visual Hallucinations sub-factor demonstrated the strongest positive associations with sleep measures. Structural equation modelling indicated that Auditory and Visual Hallucinations significantly positively predicted dissociated experiences related to rapid eye movement sleep, while paranormal experience did not. However, paranormal experience was a significant predictor when analysis controlled for Auditory and Visual Hallucinations. The moderate positive association between these variables explained this effect. Findings indicated that self-generated, productive cognitive-processes (as encompassed by Auditory and Visual Hallucinations) played a significant role in conscious control and awareness of lucid dreaming, and related dissociative sleep states (sleep paralysis and nightmares).

Keywords: Lucid dreaming, Dissociated experiences, rem, Reality Testing, paranormal experiences

Although people believe using catering in first meetings will lead to successful outcomes, it creates undesirable feelings of instrumentality for the caterer, increases anxiety, & ultimately hinders performance

To be or not to be your authentic self? Catering to others’ preferences hinders performance. Francesca Gino, Ovul Sezer, Laura Huang. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, January 31 2020.

• We examine how catering to another person’s interests influences performance.
• We find that most people use catering in an attempt to make a good impression.
• We find that compared to behaving authentically, catering harms performance.
• Catering increases anxiety and feelings of instrumentality for the caterer.

Abstract: When approaching interpersonal first meetings (e.g., job interviews), people often cater to the target’s interests and expectations to make a good impression and secure a positive outcome such as being offered the job (pilot study). This strategy is distinct from other approaches identified in prior impression management research (Studies 1A, 1B and 1C), and does not produce the benefits people expect. In a field study in which entrepreneurs pitched their ideas to potential investors (Study 2), catering harmed investors’ evaluations, while being authentic improved them. People experience greater anxiety and instrumentality when they cater to another person’s preferences than when they behave authentically (Studies 3A and 3B). Compared to behaving authentically or to a control condition, catering harms performance because trying to anticipate and fulfill others’ preferences feels instrumental and increases anxiety (Studies 4 and 5). Taken together, these results suggest that although people believe using catering in interpersonal first meetings will lead to successful outcomes, the opposite is true: catering creates undesirable feelings of instrumentality for the caterer, increases anxiety, and ultimately hinders performance.

Keywords: AuthenticityCatering: HonestySelectionAnxietyImpression management

11. General discussion

In this paper, we examined how catering to another person’s interests and expectations in interpersonal first meetings (e.g., job interviews)—compared with expressing one’s authentic thoughts and feelings—influences outcomes (e.g., getting the job). We show that this strategy is distinct from other approaches previously identified in impression management research (Studies 1A, 1B, and 1C), and that it does not produce the benefits people expect. In a pilot study, we found that most people use catering to try to make a good impression on the target and that they believe this strategy will be effective by leading to positive outcomes. However, across different contexts, we demonstrate that these lay beliefs are wrong. In a field study in which entrepreneurs pitched their ideas to potential investors, we showed that catering harmed investors’ evaluations (e.g., the likelihood of getting funded), while being authentic improved them (Study 2). In two online studies (Studies 3A and 3B), we examined why this outcome difference may occur and found that people experienced greater anxiety and instrumentality when they cater to another person’s preferences than when they behave authentically (or compared to a control condition). Finally, in two laboratory studies (Studies 4 and 5), we replicated the detrimental effect of catering on the outcome of a job interview, and we further tested the psychological mechanisms explaining this effect. We found that catering, as compared to being oneself or as compared to a control condition, leads to worse evaluations because it increases anxiety (Studies 4 and 5) and feelings of instrumentality (Study 5). Taken together, these results suggest that although people believe using catering in interpersonal first meetings will lead to successful outcomes, the opposite is true: catering creates undesirable feelings of instrumentality for the caterer, increases anxiety, and ultimately hinders performance. 11.1. Theoretical and practical implications Our work makes several theoretical contributions that fundamentally advance existing research. First, we contribute to the management and organizational behavior literature by examining the role of two different practical approaches (e.g., catering vs. being oneself) during high-stakes interactions such as job interviews and entrepreneurial pitches. Across the world, people find themselves in professional interactions like these every day. They may follow the common advice of trying to make a good impression in an attempt to manage the target’s evaluation, advice that is generally interpreted as “pleasing the other side” by catering to their interests and expectations. However, past research on interviews has overlooked the fact that impression management tactics that are other-focused or involve some exaggeration or deception may cause anxiety and distress, which may lead to lower performance (Schmit & Ryan, 1992). In addition, the entrepreneurship literature has largely ignored the possibility that entrepreneurs who engage in impression management to interest financiers and resource holders may be concealing other important parts of their message as a result, impeding their ability to receive the types of resources they so critically need (Huang & Pearce, 2015; Zott & Huy, 2007). Second, by examining how catering influences people’s performance in interpersonal first meetings, we clarify the boundaries of flattery in interactions with others. Across a wide range of situations, flattery has been found to be a successful tactic to secure positive evaluations (Vonk, 2002; Westphal & Stern, 2007). Similarly, one may expect catering to flatter the target and thus result in favorable outcomes for the actor. Here, however, we provide evidence from both the laboratory and the field that catering to another person’s interests and expectations, while flattering to the target, can be less effective than just being yourself. Catering, in fact, makes the actor feel more anxious and inauthentic, with detrimental effects on the actor’s performance. Third, this research advances our understanding of the relevance of psychology to impression management. To date, impression management research has paid scant attention to people’s psychological experience as they manage others’ impressions. Our work shows that impression management tactics cannot be fully understood without carefully considering their emotional implications. We find that catering, rather than just being oneself, increases anxiety and feelings of instrumentality and thus hinders performance. Finally, our work contributes to research on authenticity. Although there previously has been no “coherent body of literature on authentic behavior” (Harter, 2002), interest in the concept of authenticity has revived over the past decade both in social psychology and with the emergence of the “positive psychology” movement (Linley, Joseph, Harrington, & Wood, 2006; Seligman, 2002). In our research, we draw upon this body of research to demonstrate the effectiveness of being one’s authentic self compared to catering, a more common approach in interpersonal interactions. We extend existing work by showing that authenticity has important implications not only for an actor’s psychological experience (e.g., his or her emotions) but also for performance in high-stakes interpersonal settings. 11.2. Directions for Future research Despite these contributions, our work has limitations that point to possible directions for future research. First, further studies could test the boundary conditions for the detrimental effects of catering on performance. For instance, having experience with this tactic or high ability in properly executing a catering approach may result in higher rather than lower performance. The success of any form of impression management depends on whether the target perceives the actor to be sincere and authentic (Jones & Pittman, 1982; Liden & Mitchell, 1988). People who are suspected of strategically managing impressions are more likely to be seen as selfish, cold, manipulative, and untrustworthy (Stern & Westphal, 2010). Thus, skill is critical to effective impression management. Consequently, impression management attempts by politically skilled individuals are more likely to be perceived as authentic than those by less politically skilled individuals (Treadway, Ferris, Duke, Adams, & Thatcher, 2007). Examining boundary conditions for the detrimental effects of catering on performance could also shed light on the differences between our findings and those of previous research on the positive effects of assertive/other-focused impression management tactics (Bolino, Kacmar, Turnley, & Gilstrap, 2008). In addition to flattering the target, these tactics tend to be effective because they make candidates look more attractive in the eyes of those evaluating them. This is likely to occur only if candidates are actually comfortable (rather than anxious) in promoting themselves. Factors that reduce their anxiety, from individual differences such as their level of self-confidence to situational factors such as knowing that “everybody behaves inauthentically” in specific contexts or the availability of information about the target’s expectations, may lead to the type of positive effects of assertive/otherfocused impression management tactics found in prior work. Another possible boundary condition future research could explore is for the person relying on an authentic approach to be rather selffocused and preoccupied – so much so to miss important social clues. This is a case where the phenomenon we investigated may reverse. Future studies could also deepen our understanding of the emotional and cognitive consequences of catering as an impression management strategy by investigating its different forms. For example, in our studies, we focused on in-the-moment catering—that is, situations in which actors try to act like a different person in the moment, which makes them feel anxious. However, actors could also engage in a priori catering—namely, by taking actions to cater to the target before interacting with him or her (e.g., by cutting one’s hair before an interview to appear more professional to the interviewer). A priori catering may be more effective than in-the-moment catering, as it gives actors more time to prepare. Similarly, catering may involve both verbal and nonverbal inauthentic behaviors, which may affect actors differently. For instance, an actor may construe nonverbal catering attempts as more authentic than verbal ones, thus resulting in lower levels of anxiety and potentially better performance in interpersonal first meetings such as job interviews. Future research could further examine why catering hinders performance. We suggested that the greater anxiety and instrumentality catering produces are detrimental to the caterer’s cognitive resources, thus negatively affecting the caterer’s self-evaluation and self-presentation to the target. But it is also possible that the target of catering perceives anxiety and inauthenticity from the person relying on this tactic. People can tell when others are being inauthentic (Korb, With, & Niedenthal, 2014). In fact, they register that inauthenticity in their bodies, experiencing a rise in blood pressure (Butler, Egloff, & Wilhelm, 2003). This physiological response helps explain our discomfort around people who seem “fake.” Further examining whether the target of catering sees through this approach could advance our understanding of the link between catering and performance. Future research could also examine factors that may enhance authenticity. Rogers (1959) proposed that people are naturally authentic at an early age but that the constraints of social life erode this authenticity. Similarly, Harter, Stocker, and Robinson (1996) and Neff and Harter (2002) demonstrated that people are more authentic when they feel their true self is accepted by others. Though we investigated interpersonal first meetings, we suspect that catering is less common (and perhaps even more detrimental) in established relationships. Future work should focus on increasing our understanding of how and when individuals should aim for authenticity in professional settings. Future work could also investigate why people commonly view authenticity as an ineffective approach to interpersonal first meetings and professional interactions more generally. Authenticity has been correlated with an increase in self-esteem and life satisfaction (Goldman & Kernis, 2002; Wood, Linley, Maltby, Baliousis, & Joseph, 2008), relationship satisfaction (Brunell et al., 2010), psychological well-being (Ménard & Brunet, 2010; Pisarik & Larson, 2011), and mindfulness (Lakey, Kernis, Heppner, & Lance, 2008)—all outcomes that are beneficial to one’s engagement and productivity at work. Authenticity also correlates with a decrease in verbal defensiveness (Lakey et al., 2008), depressive symptoms (Ryan et al., 2005), anxiety, and stress (Ryan et al., 2005). Thus, one might ask why people view authenticity as problematic and do not behave authentically more often. In our initial pilot study, we found that most people believe catering to another person’s interests and expectations is a more promising strategy than being oneself for securing positive outcomes and would use this strategy in high-stakes interpersonal first meetings. Examining why these beliefs exist would improve our understanding of how to best help people use strategies that are effective in their interactions. Finally, in our work, we investigated contexts in which catering goals were likely to be at odds with authenticity goals—in interpersonal first meetings when individuals doubt that their true selves are what evaluators desire. Also, we manipulated this variable in our laboratory experiments to ensure independence between a catering condition and an authenticity condition. However, in life, catering motives may sometimes align with authentic, ideal-self motives. That is, who we think others want us to be and who we really are may overlap. We suspect that individuals are most at ease and least anxious in situations in which catering and authenticity motives align, and future work could explore this possibility. Relatedly, future research could explore the role of inauthenticity that catering engenders. We suggested that the greater the perceived overlap between the caterer’s set of interests and the target’s expectations, the less inauthentic catering may feel to the caterer, thus making the differences we find in our studies between catering and being authentic less pronounced. Future studies could examine the potential moderating role of the perceived overlap between the caterer’s interests and the target’s expectations.