People can make better choices when it benefits others

Humans are often motivated by self-interest. Participants in one study, for example, learned a game faster when they earned money for themselves as opposed to another person. However, this pattern changes when physical harm enters the equation. As social beings, we need to learn to avoid actions that hurt others and it turns out that people are better at learning and decision-making when trying to avoid harm to others than learning for our own benefits.