A Psychology Professor Shares Her Secret Life Hack

And the book that drove her to study evolution and behavior.

When you have the opportunity to ask some of the most interesting people in the world about their lives, sometimes the most fascinating answers come from the simplest questions. The Thrive Questionnaire is an ongoing series that gives an intimate look inside the lives of some of the world’s most successful people.

Thrive Global: What’s the first thing you do when you get out of bed?
Martie Haselton: Pick up my laptop off of the floor. I often tell myself I will watch a little Netflix to “wind down” — but then I fall asleep with my computer on my lap. Fortunately I have a cushy bed and cushy carpet.

TG: What gives you energy?
MH: A crowd. But I find beach vistas much more regenerative.

TG: What’s your secret life hack?
MH: Hormone hacking! Knowing your hormonal nudges allows you to exploit them for pleasure or ignore then to avoid peril.

TG: Name a book that changed your life.
MH: EO Wilson’s Sociobiology. I knew I wanted to do evolution and behavior ever since.

TG: Tell us about your relationship with your phone. Does it sleep with you?
MH: Unintentionally, sometimes. For the same reason my laptop ends up on the floor.

TG: How do you deal with email?
MH: I have not found the sweet spot here. I tend to get overwhelmed and then overdelete. 

TG: You unexpectedly find 15 minutes in your day, what do you do with it?
MH: Email!

TG: When was the last time you felt burned out and why?
MH: Email! (No, it was really just being pulled in too many directions at once. It makes me want to take my golden for a walk — good for him — or hide under a rock — less good).

TG: When was the last time you felt you failed and how did you overcome it?
MH: In science we fail all the time. In football that’s why they say, this is why we play the game. In science, this is why we run the study. 

Martie Haselton, PhD, is the world’s leading researcher on how ovulatory cycles influence women’s sexuality. She is a professor of Psychology at UCLA and the Institute for Society and Genetics and directs UCLA’s Evolutionary Psychology Lab. In her forthcoming book, HORMONAL: The Hidden Intelligence of Hormones — How They Drive Desire, Shape Relationships, Influence Our Choices, and Make Us Wiser Dr. Haselton explains the hidden intelligence of the hormonal cycle and its role in empowering women to succeed sexually, reproductively, and socially.

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