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Great Creative Minds Cheat Alike

Study finds that creative people are more likely to get creative with the truth.

Have you always considered yourself a creative type? That might mean your view of the truth is a bit more creative as well. According to a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers found that creative people were more likely to cheat. They speculate that the same unorthodox thinking that makes people creative also makes them more likely to justify mildly dishonest behavior.

According to TIME:

"Ethical dilemmas often require people to weigh two opposing forces: the desire to maximize self-interest and the desire to maintain a positive view of oneself," wrote business professors Francesca Gino, at Harvard, and Dan Ariely, at Duke University. "Recent research has suggested that individuals tend to resolve this tension through self-serving rationalizations: They behave dishonestly enough to profit from their unethical behavior but honestly enough to maintain a positive self-concept as honest human beings."

People were tested to gauge their creativity and intelligence levels, and separated into two groups of approximately 100 people each. Then they were given several tests that were designed to make cheating very easy. They found that creative people were much more likely to cheat than people who weren't creatively inclined.

The only hitch was that participants were offered a monetary reward for correct answers, which could potentially skew results.

So does this mean your artsy significant other is more likely to cheat on you? Not necessarily. These tests required a relatively mild level of deception. But if it were to happen, they might be more likely to creatively justify their actions.

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