Feed off outside enthusiasm

If your practitioner seems a solution worthy, absorbing her assuredness amps up your response. “When they tell you, ‘Hey, this is such a great thing!’ it boosts your own belief that what they’re talking about will work and automatically modulates your expectations,” says Marina Lopez-Sola, PhD, an assistant professor at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. If you don’t have an in-depth verbal exchange, you can still take note of expressions. A provider’s subtle cues–like a big smile–can spark your confidence in a treatment, found a new study in Nature Human Behavior. (Interestingly, the researchers also noticed that when the pros wrinkled their nose or pursed their lips as they discussed an approach they were skeptical about, it induced a nocebo effect–placebo’s evil alter ego that triggers a negative response.)

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