Essential Reads

A Startling Update on Addiction

New research suggests it's not about the pleasure, it's about the craving

Is Fitspiration Bad For You?

The psychological impact of viewing thin and muscular ideals

Self-Deception Has Many Faces

Self-deception involves incongruity between beliefs, actions, and the world

The Mindful Geek

A Radically New Way to Quit Smoking

Recent Posts on Addiction

Why the Passion Goes Out of Relationships

By Sonja Lyubomirsky Ph.D. on December 18, 2012 in How of Happiness
In fairy tales, marriages last happily ever after. Science, however, tells us that wedded bliss has but a limited shelf life.

Weapons of Mass Distraction

We are constantly inundated by technology mostly from our wireless mobile devices. How are we doing in our fight to overcome our new WMDs: Weapons of Mass Distraction?

Can We Predict Who Kills from Knowing the Criminal Mind?

Violent mass murders shaking the U.S., culminating in the Sandy Hook school killings, lead us once again to consider the role of mental illness in violent behavior. Will forensic evidence, research on psychopathy, and statistical data ever allow us to understand the psychology of the murderer?

"Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf?"

The anguish of infertility dramatized in an American classic, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"

Another Mass Shooting: Who Is Dangerous and Who Is Not?

By Kathryn Seifert on December 16, 2012 in Stop The Cycle
A dialogue is needed about: 1) How to determine whether someone is dangerous to self or others; 2) what can be done when professionals or family members have concerns about a person's dangerousness to others; 3) whether danger must be imminent in order to have someone committed to a forensic hospital for a thorough evaluation and treatment.

Pornography:The New Sex Ed For Kids

Is your kid learning about sex through porn?

Mass Murder and the Hidden Self

By Stanton Peele on December 15, 2012 in Addiction in Society
Social isolation strikes again in Newton, CT.

Addressing Head Injuries in Athletes of All Ages

Fear has been a common theme in the discussion of concussions in athletes – particularly in our youth. The conversation surrounding concussions must change from one of fear, doom and gloom to one of resilience, recovery, safety and hope.

Anxious? 4 Examples of Anxiety Treatments that Calm Nerves

What therapy options are out there if you are struggling with anxiety? Is the goal to get rid of the anxious feelings, or to address the problems triggering your worries?

Porning Too Much?

By Robert Taibbi L.C.S.W. on December 14, 2012 in Fixing Families
It's easy for porn to take control. But it's often a bad solution to other problems. It's time to break the cycle.

Physician, Seek Help

By Leana Wen M.D. on December 13, 2012 in The Doctor Is Listening
Doctors-in-training display unnecessary bravado, at great expense. What I did when my mother passed away during my training--and what I wish I could do differently now.

Why Black Coffee Can’t Sober You Up

By Richard E. Cytowic M.D. on December 13, 2012 in The Fallible Mind
Coffee and energy drinks may make you feel more awake when you've drunk too much, but that's merely an illusion—your judgment and driving are both impaired.

Sleep Driving and Sleep Killing

Kenneth Parks drove 23 km while asleep and killed his mother in-law. He was fully acquitted because it was determined that he was sleepwalking. But is he really innocent?

Hope For OCD

By Fletcher Wortmann on December 13, 2012 in Triggered
I’m wary of clichés about illness and opportunity. Being trapped in your room by anxiety isn’t an opportunity—it’s a prison sentence. But at the same time, the therapeutic process didn’t just help me recover my mental health—it led me to a new and healthier way to live.

What Makes You Driven?

Financial, personal, or social gains from success, as well as any addiction to the high of your own drive, may be only a small part of why you are driven to achieve.

Getting Athletes Help

By Mitch Abrams Psy.D. on December 12, 2012 in Sports Transgressions
Due to extreme transgressions that athletes sometimes engage in, it is easy for people from afar to blame the athletes, the teams, the leagues and the counselors that are trying to help the players. Improvements can always be made, but the incidence of these events will never be zero...it isn't in any other segment of our society...

Taking to Drink

By Lynn Phillips on December 12, 2012 in Dream On
When the late Gore Vidal compared his fondness for the lecture circuit to “taking to drink,” was he suggesting that having an audience was potentially addictive—or something more personal and interesting?

Our Un-American 'Addiction' to Royalty

By Frank Farley Ph.D. on December 12, 2012 in The People's Professor
Our relentless obsession with Royal doings is symptomatic of media's and the common culture's retreat from the American dream, its history, its continuing battles for egalitarian opportunity, and why its democratic ideals need continual re-affirmation, for ourselves, and as a beacon for the world. Inherited privilege is on the nature side, America is more the nurture side.

This Was the Year in Willpower

This round-up features the most-read posts and most-watched videos on this blog in the past year. Plus, the blog post you probably didn't read (it got the fewest hits of the year), but that I picked as the defining post of 2012.

The Breath of Freedom

By Mark Matousek on December 10, 2012 in Ethical Wisdom
Nearly all of us breathe incorrectly. This can have disastrous results. Even everyday stress can be relieved with the power of one deep breath

Tis the Season

Let’s just paint a little picture. It is a picture we already know pretty well, but still every year this picture seems to take many of us by irritable surprise.

Are Porn Actresses “Damaged Goods”?

By Gad Saad Ph.D. on December 10, 2012 in Homo Consumericus
Anti-porn advocates often proclaim that porn actresses are “damaged goods.” Supposedly they're more likely to: (1) have been victims of childhood sexual abuse, (2) be psychologically damaged and (3) use alcohol and other substances to numb the pain. A recent study sheds some light.

Hook-Up and Alcohol Cultures

Have the "Hook-Up Culture" and the "Alcohol Culture" become the dominant ones on our college campuses? If so, what are the various causes—and solutions?

Time for Digital Hat Racks

By Nir Eyal on December 10, 2012 in Automatic You
How often are you digitally masturbating?

Turning From Success to Significance

By David J. Powell Ph.D. on December 10, 2012 in Game Plan
What's it like for a man to get older? Are there differences between life's first and second halves?

What's Your Drinking Style?

By Leah Odze Epstein on December 10, 2012 in Drinking Diaries
In the end, the most helpful thing you can do is ask yourself: What kind of a drinking life do I feel most comfortable with, given who I really am?

Searching for Now? It's Already Here.

When we stop trying to be present, there is just the present. If there is a task for the mind to accomplish, it is to stop trying to figure out how to get us here, how to insert us into now.

Workaholic Breakdown: Second Turning Point

By Barbara Killinger Ph.D. on December 10, 2012 in The Workaholics
The loss of integrity is a tragic outcome that occurs as the workaholic breakdown progresses.

Another 'Addiction'?

Excess does not an "addiction" make.