Study: People Think They’re Nicer Than They Actually Are

PHILADELPHIA (CBS)–Sometimes the bad weather brings out the good in people.

“I have neighbors who are elderly, so one of the things I like to do is make sure they’re okay,” said Bryon Reynolds, of Philadelphia.

Fellow Philly resident Akilah Cunningham added, “You shovel for them, you put the salt down. Help them cross the street.”

We all like to think we do the right thing. But, how nice are you?

A new study suggests most of us have a long way to go.

British researchers found 98% of people rate themselves in the top half of pleasant people and most of us aren’t as kind as we think we are.

“I think everyone wants to make themselves feel good, like yeah I’m a nice person,” said Elizabeth Collins, in town from Indianapolis, Indiana.

In addition to answering questions about how nice, healthy, happy and stressed they felt, participants were graded on their emotional intelligence and asked how often they helped others.

While most held doors, offered directions and gave up their seat, far fewer folks regularly donated blood, helped someone cross a road or gave money to a stranger.

Rudeness, losing important items and bad customer service were most likely to kill our kindness.

“When something’s not going right in your life, you don’t feel like being nice to people,” said Yaniv Shmuklur of Indianapolis.

So, why are we so quick to give ourselves credit, yet deny others the benefit of the doubt?

“I think we don’t put ourselves in other people’s shoes enough, so I think we don’t give them enough credit for how well they’re doing for their life in their circumstances,” said Sheridan Smith.

To read more on the study CLICK HERE.

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