This study examined the effect of humor in the workplace, focusing on the bidirectional relationship between behavior by managers and expressions of humor by their subordinates. Japanese employees (n = 565) responded to questionnaires addressing their managers’ style of leadership, humor expressed by employees in the workplace, their feelings about humor, the workplace atmosphere, and perceived job performance. Of the subjects, 315 reported that there was a subordinate who expressed humor in their workplace. Covariance structural analysis revealed that a leadership style involving supporting subordinates and maintaining group harmony promoted expressions of humor by subordinates, and such behaviors resulted in a workplace atmosphere that prioritized employee relationships by promoting positive feelings. The cooperative atmosphere promoted supportive leadership, as well as job performance. We discuss the role of humor in the workplace in regard to the bidirectional influence between leadership and subordinates.
This study, informed by terror management theory, examined the influence of fear and avoidance of death in daily contexts on habitual health-related behavior. Four hundred adults above the age of 30 years were asked to respond to web-based questionnaires that measured their fear and avoidance of death, buffering factors to existential threats in the Tripartite Security System model (Hart, Shaver, & Goldenberg, 2005), habitual health-related behavior, frequency of holding services for deceased people, and experiences related to death. Covariance structure analysis revealed that fear of death promoted health-related behavior by eliciting buffering factors to existential threats. By contrast, conscious refusal and avoidance of death inhibited buffering factors as well as health-related behavior. These results suggested that confronting the fear of death and seeking a life that values relationships and self-esteem as a member of society are essential for promoting daily health-related behaviors.
“Reality shock” is defined as the discrepancy between an individual’s expectations established prior to joining to an organization and their perceptions after becoming a member of the organization. The purpose of this study was to develop a scale to measure factors leading to reality shock in first-year teachers, and to confirm its reliability and validity. A scale was developed based on factors leading to realty shock, and a survey was conducted on 219 first-year teachers (90 men, 129 women, mean age 25.18 years). Structure analysis based on factor analysis revealed that this scale consisted of four factors; “inter-personal relations in the workplace”, “lack of experience”, “relationship with students or parents”, and “pressure at work”. Given that high scores of the scale were associated with negative changes in perceptions of work, we showed that the scale was concurrently valid. Multiple regression analysis showed that realty shock significantly influenced stress responses, and that it had particular positive effects on anxiety and depression. Future studies will need to elucidate factors that buffer the effects of reality shock, and develop interventions to prevent worsening mental health in first-year teachers.
This study sought to examine the reliability and validity of the Japanese version of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (J-BRIEF). In this study, BRIEF was administered to evaluate executive function in everyday life in 91 subjects with autism spectrum disorder (ASD; ages 12–15; 72 boys) and 2,230 community samples (CS; ages 12–15; 1,083 boys). For this purpose, we applied categorical confirmatory factor analysis, which revealed that the scale was composed of two factors and eight subscales of the high test-retest stability. Reliability was confirmed using an external criterion (ADHD-Rating scale: ADHD-RS). Receiver operating characteristic analysis revealed an optimal cut-off of 118.5 (sensitivity = 0.811, specificity = 0.828). This study confirmed the reliability and the validity of J-BRIEF.
This study developed a Japanese version of the Body Appreciation Scale-2 (BAS-2), a measure for a comprehensive assessment of positive body image, and investigated its reliability and validity. The results of confirmatory factor analysis showed that, like the original version, the Japanese BAS-2 had a one-factor structure and invariance across gender. Body appreciation scores had good internal consistency, test-retest reliability, and construct validity. Furthermore, the scale exhibited incremental validity by predicting psychological elements (disordered eating, self-esteem, and satisfaction with life) above and beyond body dissatisfaction. Thus, the BAS-2 is suitable for the assessment of positive body image in the Japanese population.
Theory-of-mind (ToM) has been extensively studied using neuroimaging, with the goal of finding a neural basis for ToM and its associate emotional and cognitive processes. In neuroimaging, a functional localizer is used when a region of interest needs to be identified in a way that is statistically independent of the main experiment. The original ToM localizer (ToM-L) for functional magnetic resonance imaging (Dodell-Feder et al., 2011) measures brain activity when a set of English sentences and related questions are read and answered by participants. We developed a linguistically localized version of the ToM-L for use with Japanese speakers, and evaluated it by scanning 70 participants. The results showed that this localizer could be used to define individual ToM-related areas, requiring about one-third of the scanning time of the original ToM-L while maintaining its statistical ability to identify individual ToM-related brain regions.
Homophone effects, which refer to the phenomenon in which lexical decision times are longer for homophones than nonhomophones, have not been consistently observed for Japanese homophones with multiple mates. Mizuno and Matsui (2016) explored this inconsistency, finding that phonological familiarity of homophones—namely, the total frequencies of a homophone and all of its mates—can countervail homophone effects. However, it remains unclear why phonological familiarity has such a great influence on homophone processing by native Japanese readers, who rely very little on phonological information when processing words (Mizuno & Matsui, 2013). We hypothesized that high phonological familiarity influences lexical decision. Accordingly, we conducted lexical decision and semantic categorization experiments using Japanese homophones with high and low phonological familiarity. The results revealed that high phonological familiarity decreased lexical decision time, but not semantic categorization time, indicating that lexical decision tasks are sensitive to the phonological familiarity of stimulus words. Finally, we discuss the need to control the phonological familiarity of homophones in some way in the context of lexical decision tasks.
Recent research has revealed neuro-cognitive commonalities between decisions for self and for others. However, very few direct comparisons have been made between decisions for self and others in the context of economic decision-making under risk. In this study, we compared gambling decisions for self and others using a withinparticipants design. We manipulated the level of uncertainty involved in acquisition of seed money for gambling to explore its potential role in mediating risky decisions. The results revealed that participants were significantly more risk-averse when making decisions for others than for self, and this behavioral difference was stronger when the seed money for gambling was obtained with certainty. Moreover, additional analysis using the Social Value Orientation scale (Van Lange, Otten, De Bruin, & Joireman, 1997) revealed that the “individualistic” participants made the self-other distinction more clearly than the “prosocial” participants, indicating that a participant’s socialvalue orientation plays a role when making risky decisions for others.
When reading narratives, readers infer the emotions of characters and empathize with them. Emphathic responses can be parallel or reactive. This study, based on the dual-process theory, investigated which emotional responses (i.e., emotion inference, parallel response, or reactive response) in reading are caused by system 1 (unconscious, implicit, automatic, low-effort process) and which depend on system 2 (conscious, explicit, controlled, high-effort process). As cognitive load affects responses influenced by system 2, the effects of working memory load on reading were examined. Participants were divided into two groups based on working memory capacity, and instructed to read narratives under a dual-tasks situation similar to the reading span test. The results revealed no effect of cognitive load on inference of characters’ emotions. However, additional load did affect both types of empathic responses in the low-capacity group. Further, when cognitive load was low, emotion inference correlated with both empathic responses. These results indicate that emotion inference is an automatic process, whereas empathic responses are controlled processes.
In the Dohsa-hou theory, the mechanism of therapeutic effectiveness is defined by “the mode of striving” and “experience of the Dohsa”. Quantifying the experience for two fundamental Dohsa-tasks, the author attempted to demonstrate the experience of the Dohsa-hou. Factor analysis extracted three factors related to the dohsa-experiencing and four factors related to the accompanied-experiencing, which were defined as “the Dohsa-hou experience scale”. Furthermore, by covariance structure analysis, the author attempted to model the seven factors in a scale. The results revealed that clients started by accepting dohsa assistance, and then experienced a proactive sense of action and turned their own attention to their own mode of activity. Subsequently, they became aware of their own existence, which led to experiencing controllable self dohsa. Finally, the path of the model reached “experiencing bodily relaxation” via “experiencing mental relaxation”, but not in the reverse order. This means that the Dohsa-hou session deals with the mental state in addition to the physical state. This model helps us to understand the mechanisms of the Dohsa-hou.