The Latest

10 Tools That Will Unlock Your Potential

By Barton Goldsmith Ph.D. on February 24, 2012 in Emotional Fitness
The world is full of opportunity, but sometimes too much thinking can get in the way. Here are a few tips to help you change your life for the better.

What's Your Social Status? Depends Who You Ask

In complex societies such as our own, it’s possible to be high status in one segment of society while being low status in another. When diverse status communities co-exist in this way, is it good or bad for society? And why do such different definitions of “high status” emerge in the first place?

Can Infections Result in Mental Illness?

Can infections result in mental illness? Dr. Thomas Insel, Director of the National Institutes of Mental Health, commented in his blog over a year ago: "The increasing evidence linking strep infection to OCD in children suggests that microbiomics may prove an important research area for understanding and treating mental disorders."

Three Quarters of a Century

By Sheila Weinstein on February 24, 2012 in What Do I Do Now?
That's how old I am. I just celebrated my birthday, and realized that I've really been 75 for two years because all I could think about when I turned 74 was... Egad! I'm going to be 75 next year!

Why People Hate "Closure"

By Nancy Berns Ph.D. on February 24, 2012 in Freedom to Grieve
Meet a Myth Slayer. A psychiatrist and a grieving father, Gordon Livingston writes, “Like all who mourn I learned an abiding hatred for the word ‘closure,’ with its comforting implications that grief is a time-limited process from which we will all recover.”

Say It Isn't So: Major Atrocities Against Animals

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 24, 2012 in Animal Emotions
Canadian conservation officers slaughter 145 bears and numerous dead animals discovered at Oregon State University. The teaser image is of a live raccoon caught by its rear leg and attempting to escape by weaving itself through a fence. Wildlife Services left it to die after illegally setting traps and snares. You can stop this violence.

Defining Normal: How Psychiatry Has Lost Its Way

How can one person use a set of "symptoms" as a springboard for success while another with the same symptoms needs meds and therapy?

Sports: 5 Ps for the Big Game

By Jim Taylor Ph.D. on February 24, 2012 in The Power of Prime
The greatest challenge that athletes have is to play their best when it really counts. A healthy attitude will set you up for a psychology that will allow you to play your best. An unhealthy attitude, by contrast, will only set you up for failure.

Pathologizing Grief

The traumatizing impact of human finiteness, as disclosed in the loss of a loved one, is not an illness from which one can or should recover.

Does Your Partner Complain About Your Sex Life?

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on February 24, 2012 in The Squeaky Wheel
Ignoring sexual complaints from your partner can be costly to the relationship. Here’s why.

Jeremy Lin and Racism: How Subtle Discrimination Affects Targets

In last week's post, I compared Jeremy Lin to Jackie Robinson. One reader, Angela, astutely pointed out that the analogy is problematic: "There was an actual structure preventing such players from participating, a structure that doesn't exist for Asians or Asian-Americans today... Lin [is] not breaking a barrier." Does this make Lin's journey less significant?

I Try to Envision How I Would Be Behaving if I Were Happy

By Gretchen Rubin on February 24, 2012 in The Happiness Project
I've admired Gabrielle Blair's blog Design Mom—"at the intersection of design and motherhood"—for a long time.

What Not to Say to Single Women Who Long to Be Moms

By Melanie Notkin on February 24, 2012 in Savvy Auntie
We all know that going through infertility treatments can be incredibly challenging for couples. But single women who yearn to be mothers go through their own heartache. While their infertility is circumstantial, it can be just as difficult as each month passes...

The Origins of Positive-Constructive Daydreaming

By Scott Barry Kaufman Ph.D. on February 24, 2012 in Beautiful Minds
The important difference between mind wandering and daydreaming.

Watching Violence in the Media Does Not Cause Crime

It has long been asserted that watching crime on television or playing violent video games contributes to violent behavior. In other words, it is what a person watches that allegedly influences and desensitizes him. Thus he becomes violent. Consider the absurdity of such a thesis!

Animals: A New Ethics (Resurgence Magazine)

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 24, 2012 in Animal Emotions
In this special edition of Resurgence magazine you'll read new wide-ranging essays by animal advocates including campaigners, activists, authors, philosophers, scientists, lawyers, charity heads, poets, and artists. It's truly an up-to-date landmark publication.

How to Level the Playing Field for Introverts and Extroverts

By Ben Dattner Ph.D. on February 23, 2012 in Credit and Blame at Work
The fantastic success of Susan Cain's Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking demonstrates that she has tapped into something very important in our culture and our society at this moment in history.

Gestures as Self-Fulfilling Prophecies, Negative and Positive

By Christopher Peterson Ph.D. on February 23, 2012 in The Good Life
I watched the recent 46th NFL Super Bowl between the Patriots and the Giants but sooner rather than later changed channels during the halftime show, which featured Madonna. As a result, I missed seeing live the beginning of the mini-scandal that ensued when one of her backup singers, M.I.A., made an obscene gesture to the viewing audience.

Bold Fish, Brilliant Lizards, and Heartbeat Detecting Snakes

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 23, 2012 in Animal Emotions
Climate change alters fish and lizard behavior and boas are able to sense the heartbeat of their prey and know when to stop squeezing. It turns out that acidic water alters a fish's sense of smell so that they approach rather than avoid dangerous predators and hot temperatures make for super-intelligent lizards.

Collateral Damage

How does a sudden outbreak of war amongst civilized people in a sophisticated world-class city impact the life of a child? A psychologytoday.com reader shares her experiences.

Bipolar IN Order—From Freedom to Self-Mastery

By Tom Wootton on February 23, 2012 in Bipolar Advantage
This is the paradigm change that needs to happen in mental health.

Lower the Pressure

By Rick Hanson Ph.D. on February 23, 2012 in Your Wise Brain
Pressure activates ancient motivational circuits that were very effective in keeping our ancestors alive but even at best, there is an inherent collateral damage.

The Problem With High Expectations

By Peter Bregman on February 23, 2012 in How We Work
High expectations can have a positive effect; people need a high bar to stretch towards. But I think many of us take it too far. We slip so easily into criticisms of ourselves and those around us—family, friends, coworkers, public figures that we no longer expect people to be human beings.

There Are Only LINks in Our Armor!

By Ravi Chandra M.D. on February 23, 2012 in The Pacific Heart
A slur on national TV elicits outrage.

Learning an Alien's Language

By Michael Erard Ph.D. on February 23, 2012 in The Will to Plasticity
People have recently wondered, if we were contacted by aliens, would we know what to say? Here I offer a science fiction solution: resurrect a hyperpolyglot to do the job.

Memory and ECT

By Julie K Hersh on February 23, 2012 in Struck By Living
Is memory loss an issue with electroconvulsive therapy? Julie Hersh and others find honest answers from a team of experts from UT Southwestern. A special panel discussed ECT at the Dallas Children's Theater.

The Fantasy of the "Aging-Parent Talk"

We are told to have "the talk" about changes that may occur later in life. As a clinician, there are questions I think are good to ask about health but what if your parent is not going to give it up? What if he or she is not a talker? What if you are not a talker?

Three Things Technology Has Taken Away from You

By Tristan Gorrindo M.D. on February 23, 2012 in The Digital Family
We decided to ask a group of over 200 parents: “What are you not doing now that you used to do because of technology use?”