From scissors and staplers to car keys and cell phones, we pass objects to other people every day. We often try to pass the objects so that the handle or other useful feature is facing the appropriate direction for the person receiving the item, but new research shows that we’re less accommodating when it comes to handing over our own belongings.
The findings are published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
“The associations or attachments that we have with an object leak into our movements in unintended ways when we interact with them,” says psychology researcher and study author Merryn Constable of the University of Toronto. “The act of facilitating another person’s action is somewhat inhibited when the object that we’re passing is something that we own, but the effects are so subtle that they are likely to go unnoticed.”