I am interested in the conscious and nonconscious ways people fundamentally orient to the world. In particular, I focus on how the motivations, emotions, needs, and goals people hold impact the basic ways people perceive, interpret, and ultimately react to information around them. I advocate for an interactive cognitive system where psychological states constrain the basic manner in which we perceive and react to our worlds. My work, then, explores motivational biases in visual and social perception and the consequential effects for behavior and navigation of the social world. In doing so, my research represents an intersection among social psychology, judgment and decision-making, social cognition, and perception.