Ever wondered why you think you are doing the lion’s share of the listening in a relationship? It may not be his fault (so to speak). It may have more to do with sex differences in the way the brain is wired.
We know, the old “brain differences between the genders” mightn’t offer any comfort when you’ve tried to bring up – for the fifth time – the whole dirty gym bag in the hallway thing (it’s not going to unpack and clean itself). But it might give you something to think about so you can delay a verbal explosion.
When it comes to problem solving and cooperation, men and women have no “inter-brain cohesion”, new research has found.
In that, we don’t cooperate in the same way. At all.
All those ‘you’re not even listening’, ‘you don’t understand me’, ‘you just don’t get it’ comments? They’re now validated. Why? Because, when it comes to problems solving and cooperation, the brains of men and women are working in an awfully different manner.
The research comes out of the University of Stanford and tested the brain activity of pairs of people – women and women, men and men, and men and women – who were trying to solve a problem. Men and women were found to have zero ‘inter-brain cohesion’, which means while women were using their right temporal cortex, men were stuck somewhere in their right inferior prefrontal region. READ: Emotional and visual intelligence versus logic and problem-solving.
The study looked to 222 participants who sat in front of a computer, across the table from their partner. Pairs could see each other, but were instructed not to talk. The participants were asked to press a button when the colour of a circle on the computer screen changed colour. The goal was to press the button simultaneously, or as close together as possible. Each pair had 40 attempts to get it right.