By: Joe Serwach, U-M News Service
Thursday, June 29, 2006
ANN ARBOR, Mich.—Are all people stressed out by a defeat or does it hurt some more than others? It may depend on whether you're a power-hungry wolf or a sheep, according to University of Michigan psychology researchers.
In a study published in a recent issue of the science journal Hormones and Behavior, U-M's Michelle Wirth and co-authors, Katy Welsh and Oliver Schultheiss, looked at what happens to stress hormone levels when people are defeated in a laboratory contest....
"As our results show, one man's poison is another man's cake," said Schultheiss, associate professor of psychology. "The power-hungry 'wolves' among our participants were hit hardest by a defeat, whereas the 'sheep' couldn't care less about being beaten."
As it turns out, then, not only does being defeated hurt some more than other. Defeating others might also be a source of stress.
"The sheep were really uncomfortable with winning," Schultheiss said. "This runs counter to the idea that everybody likes coming out at the top of the heap. That's a really surprising finding for us."
To read the entire release, please visit http://www.umich.edu/news/?Releases/2006/Jun06/r061906a.