All About Personality

Questions of personality have vexed mankind from the dawn of personhood: can people change? How do others perceive me? What is the difference between normal and pathological behavior? One's personality is so pervasive and all-important that it presents a clinical paradox of sorts: it is hard to assess our own personality, and impossible to overlook that of others.

Recent Posts on Personality

Is Birth Order a Myth?

Most people believe that birth order shapes our personalities and has impact on the careers we choose, and the ways we behave. Is this real, or merely an illusion? What do we really know about birth order effects?

Perfectionism: Inherited or A Psychological Solution?

There are many articles and research that reference Perfectionism. The term can be loosely thrown around to assume that all perfectionism is an inherited trait. This may be true for some, but not others. Perhaps psychological experiences influence a person's perfectionism. In either case, not enough is known or understood to assert causation.

A Psychologist’s Guide to People Watching

The art of people watching most likely dates back to earliest civilization. Putting psychology’s knowledge about nonverbal behavior to use can help you become a pro at this basic human pastime.

Identifying with the “No-Self”

If we can live one moment at a time, we’ll free ourselves like a young child and we’ll discover life can be beautiful. The small changes add up and make a difference.

What Your Facebook Use Reveals About Your Personality

Research shows the way you interact on social media says a lot about your personality and your self-esteem.

What Causes You Inner Turmoil?

Being in heated conflict not with others but with yourself can—let’s face it—be agonizing. To be split down the middle, to endlessly waver between two (and sometimes more) options, can at its worst be almost unimaginably distressing. Obsessive to an extreme, it can lead to a paralysis of will (not to mention, much lost sleep). . . .

The Hand that Rocks the Cradle Rules—But Whose Hand Is It?

The history of the nature/nurture controversy reveals fraud on the nurture side and developments in our view of nature that the imprinted brain theory readily explains.

12 Ways to Reduce Your Stress

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on April 16, 2015 in How To Do Life
These tactics have been effective for my clients...and for me.

What Makes Us Tick?

They met in a airport because of a book that one of them was reading, the same the other had recently read. The conversation was so stimulating that they decided to continue it online and share it with their readers. They both believe this will be the first of an endless series of talks about the subject—what makes people tick—that tickles them the most.

Parental Warmth: Simple, Powerful, and Often Challenging

Amidst all the chatter about parenting styles and techniques, it is easy to forget about the importance of warmth. This overlooked dimension is found to be critical to child development in study after study, so why don’t we give it the attention it deserves?

I Ain't Got no Body

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on April 16, 2015 in Shadow Boxing
A former prosecutor offers collection of U.S. homicide cases that went to trial, despite having no body.

Hire an Au Pair? Help Yourself; Help Her; and Help the World

So many moms, and dads as well now, have too much to do with juggling work and home life. Ever thought your family could use a nanny? A nanny may also need you!

Expanding the Self

We should reciprocate the gift of our own lives..... To be focused narrowly - worrying excessively about our personal skills and accomplishments and about the public's regards of these - is to remain forever a child.

Outgrowing Jealousy

Obsessive thinking is inevitably inaccurate.

The 4 Styles of Humor

What do you find funny, and what sort of humor appeals to you? Research has focused on different humor styles, and distinguishes four types.

3 Signs That Your Relationship is Built to Last

By Jonathan Fader Ph.D. on April 14, 2015 in The New You
What is the secret to a long lasting, happy relationship? Psychologists and relationship experts are always scrambling to find the answer to all relationship woes. While we don’t quite have the holy grail of health relationships, researchers have found some amazing tell-tales of a thriving relationship, and not all of them are what you’d expect.

What to Do When Your Life Takes an Unexpected Turn

As you make your way through life, you are guided by both the long- and short-term goals you’ve set for yourself. However, your plans may take an unexpected turn. From research on “career shocks,” you can learn to manage the unexpectedly good and bad that life throws your way whether in your career or your relationships.

How Much Should Parents Protect Their Children?

A legitimate question about how much risk parents should allow their children to take, and how protective of their children parents should be has been all but drowned out by extreme emotion.

When Introverts and Extroverts Attract

If your love interest is your polar opposite, here are a few things you should know about introversion and extroversion.

Screening Test for Mental Illness

In the past weeks as our sympathies turned to families of the victims of Flight 9525, many have asked how we can allow such evil to exist in our world. But the right question is “How can we allow a person with serious mental illness to fly a commercial airplane?”

Why Some People Let Us Down When We Need Them

If someone has experienced a particular event, they’ll sympathize with those going through the same experience. But those who have gotten through difficult situations tend to be the harshest judges of those who fail under similar circumstances.

Loving the Process Means Everything for Creativity

By Gregory Ciotti on April 13, 2015 in Habits, Not Hacks
Artists must enjoy the process of creation for its own sake.

Sex Is Disgusting But We Keep Doing It

Disgust and sexual arousal seem at odds with each other but they're also more closely related than you might think.

Feeling Grateful and 'Paying it Forward'

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on April 13, 2015 in Media Spotlight
According to the "find, remind, and bind" theory of gratitude first proposed by psychologist Sara B. Algoe, gratitude plays a role in cementing the social bonds we have with other people. A new research study published in the journal Emotion suggests that grateful are more likely to copy body movements of those who help them which can help cement new relationships.

When a Sociopath Is Hell Bent on Destroying You

By Carrie Barron M.D. on April 13, 2015 in The Creativity Cure
Sociopaths (anti-social personality, psychopath) can decimate a life. The mental, emotional or physical trauma can be stunning. The aftermath of sociopathic is unique because the assault instills a dim world view, a shaky sense of safety and a feeling that one has been visited by evil. Here are 16 points of focus to begin recovery.

The Experience Machine Reloaded

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on April 12, 2015 in One Among Many
In a famous thought experiment, philosopher Robert Nozick tried to refute hedonism, or the idea that pleasure is the best and pain is the worst. But not so fast, please.

Gracing Clients’ Lives

Boomer died suddenly at age 9, leaving a trail of progeny and well wishes for his therapy work with clients.

The Real Dangers of “Diagnosing” Everyone a Narcissist

By Craig Malkin on April 12, 2015 in Romance Redux
The current promiscuous use of "narcissist" not only trivializes the pain of people who've suffered greatly in abusive relationships, it generates massive confusion about what narcissism really is. Here's the truth about narcissism and narcissists--and why we need to stop, take a breath, and think carefully before we use either word as an insult.

Kicking an Abuser Out of Your Life, and Out of Your Head

Kicking an Abuser Out of Your Life, and Out of Your Head. Ending an abusive relationship requires leaving physically and psychologically. By Avigail Gordon , M.A.