My HormonologyDo you consider yourself generally trusting of folks you don’t know or are you wary of strangers?

For instance, at a singles event, would you believe a man you just met when he says he’s looking for a committed, long-term relationship?

Or when in a crowded ladies room, would you trust a woman who offers to watch your shopping bags as you went into a cramped stall where they wouldn’t fit?

Believe it or not, your level of trust in unfamiliar men and women can change according to the week you’re on in your cycle, reveals a 2013 study in the journal Biological Psychology.

And, interestingly enough, the level of trust your hormones are giving you depends on the other person’s level of attractiveness.

Specifically, the researchers found that you’re more prone to being distrustful of attractive men you don’t know in your Week 2 (starting 8 days from the onset of menstruation and lasting through ovulation).

And you’re more trusting of unattractive women you don’t know in your Week 3 (starting right after ovulation).

Why?

As for your Week 2 distrust in attractive men, researchers speculate that as you approach ovulation, you become more selective about which potential partner to pick, so you’re on the lookout for lies or deceit in guys who you’d consider a possible romantic match-up.

And as far as why you’re more trusting of unattractive women in your Week 3, researchers think it may be that during this phase of your cycle, your body believes you could be pregnant, so your hormones make you more comfortable reaching out to women you don’t consider your romantic rivals for extra help and support.

So, how can you use this information in your everyday life?

When meeting someone new (for instance, at a singles event), taking a risk (such as letting a strange woman watch your shopping bags in a bathroom) or in other circumstances (such as when interviewing people to hire), you may want to take into account the level of trust or mistrust you have in him or her and where you are in your cycle.

If you think your hormones may be affecting your trust level, consider whether you need to recalibrate it to better fit the situation. You may find that the attractive male accountant you’re interviewing has excellent credentials and references, so those pangs of doubt you’re feeling are unwarranted. Or you may realize that leaving shopping bags in the hands of a complete stranger is unwise and squishing them into your bathroom stall is a safer decision.

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