Essential Reads

Your Power Over Addiction

You can train your brain to feel good when you do things that are good for you. Follow these 3 simple steps and you will wire in a healthy comfort habit to replace an unhealthy one
Paul Nunez

Are Some Scientists Serious About Denying Free Will?

A brief look at the issues of consciousness and free will.

Vagus Nerve Stimulation Holds Promise for Treating Addiction

By Christopher Bergland on January 24, 2017 in The Athlete's Way
Vagus nerve stimulation can reduce cravings and may offer a radical new way to break the cycle of addictive behaviors, according to early findings from a preclinical study.

Can You Be Mindful and Still Feel Angry?

By Peggilee Wupperman Ph.D. on January 15, 2017 in Beyond Self-Destructive Behavior
Mindfulness will not turn you into a feel-good Zen zombie. It does not stop you from feeling negative emotions; it just helps free you from being controlled by those emotions.

More Posts on Compulsive Behaviors

Your Dependent Attachment Style Is Pushing Your Partner Away

If you have a depending attachment style, and you are in a relationship, chances are that you are in the process of ruining your relationship.

Why Your Clutter Is Killing You and What to Do About It

By Clifford N Lazarus Ph.D. on November 10, 2016 in Think Well
Are you a clutterbug, packrat or full-blown hoarder? Here's why your stuff could be weighing down your health and happiness. And what to start doing about it.

The Rise of Daily Fantasy Sports

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on November 10, 2016 in In Excess
Fantasy sports have changed dramatically over the last few years and now include daily versions where people pay to play. But is it a form of gambling or a game of skill—or both?

Box Set Bingeing (Revisited)

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on November 02, 2016 in In Excess
Research into 'box set bingeing' (watching a whole TV series in one sitting) has grown over the last few years and now there is a new psychometric scale that assesses it.

Could Vampires Be Real?

Another psychiatrist describes how a woman stored her own blood to look at it in times of stress, as this calmed her.

America’s Opioid Epidemic

By Christopher Lane Ph.D. on October 28, 2016 in Side Effects
In the battle against opioid addiction, court-released documents show drug makers deliberately blocked efforts to curb prescribing.

Promising to Stop Addictive Behavior Is a Very Bad Idea

By Lance Dodes M.D. on October 24, 2016 in The Heart of Addiction
It's common for people suffering with an addiction to tell others, or even themselves, "I promise I'll stop (my addictive behavior)." But it's a disaster waiting to happen.

When the Perks of Love Interfere With Love

By Mark B. Borg, Jr, Ph.D., Grant H. Brenner, MD, & Daniel Berry, RN, MHA on October 17, 2016 in Irrelationship
It is sometimes the case that the gifts of love become more important (and are certainly more safe from the risks and anxieties of love) than love itself.

5 Ways to Deal With Someone Who Never Stops Bragging

Nobody likes a bragger, but what is the best way to stop one? Here are some creative ways to change what you can.

Do Shame & "Rock Bottom" Decrease Dysregulated Behavior? No!

By Peggilee Wupperman Ph.D. on October 14, 2016 in Beyond Self-Destructive Behavior
Do shaming and "rock bottom" help decrease dysregulated behavior? No! In fact, they can actually do the opposite.

Imagined Ugliness

By Graham C.L. Davey Ph.D. on October 04, 2016 in Why We Worry
Around one in 10 individuals seeking cosmetic surgery may be diagnosable with body dysmorphic disorder

Why Is It So Much Fun to Get a Box in the Mail?

By Donna Barstow on October 01, 2016 in Ink Blots Cartoons
Many of us order things online that we wouldn't think of getting at the store. Why? Curiosity!

What Leads Us to See Our Addictions for What They Are?

By Shauna H Springer Ph.D. on October 01, 2016 in Free-Range Psychology
What experiences shape the moment of recognition that addiction is bondage and that freedom is worth clawing towards with every molecule of strength and courage that we possess?

Are Subscription Boxes Bad for Your Health? Maybe!

By Donna Barstow on September 30, 2016 in Ink Blots Cartoons
The hidden mysteries of shopping online: Subscription boxes!

Do We Control Our Own Purchasing Habits?

By Liraz Margalit Ph.D. on September 21, 2016 in Behind Online Behavior
Flaws in our decision-making ability are fuel for the market. In certain situations we are especially susceptible to external influences.
Pixabay, labeled for reuse

Why the Sex Addiction Model Is Not a Humanistic Approach

By Michael Aaron, Ph.D. on September 14, 2016 in Standard Deviations
Plenty of evidence suggests that harm reduction psychotherapy provides a more humanistic alternative to sex addiction treatment.

When Porn Consumption Goes Up, Sex Crimes Go Down

By Michael Aaron, Ph.D. on September 13, 2016 in Standard Deviations
Contrary to media hysteria, research shows that when porn consumption goes up, sex crimes go down.

Unwavering and Too Proud of It

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on September 12, 2016 in Ambigamy
Don't mistake poor impulse control for uncompromising principle.

Fear of Sudden Infant Death

By Fredric Neuman M.D. on September 06, 2016 in Fighting Fear
An example of the treatment of an exaggerated fear—of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Surprisingly, the very quick cure of this fear was followed by a lessening of other fears.

How Much Sex Is Too Much Sex?

By Jon E. Grant, JD, MD, MPH, Brian L. Odlaug, PhD, MPH, and Samuel R. Chamberlain, MD, PhD on August 30, 2016 in Why Can't I Stop?
Normal sexual behavior may be overpathologized (that is, treated as disordered when it is not) if a clinician fails to recognize the wide range of normal human sexual expression...
Microsoft clip art/onlinecollege.org

The Perils of Multitasking

By William R. Klemm Ph.D. on August 26, 2016 in Memory Medic
Multitasking not only becomes a habit, it is addictive. I see many youngsters who seem to have withdrawal symptoms if they can't check their phone messages every few minutes.

Desperately Seeking a False Sense of Security

By Mark B. Borg, Jr, Ph.D., Grant H. Brenner, MD, & Daniel Berry, RN, MHA on August 22, 2016 in Irrelationship
It is the awareness of the most mundane threats to our hearts that irrelationship most effectively protects us from—how emotionally close we are to those in our everyday lives.

"Same Head Every Day"

By Mark B. Borg, Jr, Ph.D., Grant H. Brenner, MD, & Daniel Berry, RN, MHA on August 16, 2016 in Irrelationship
Brainlock is our way of describing the neurological/physiological-meets-individual/social/contextual factors that underlie and sustain irrelationship.

Are Olympians Addicted to Exercise, Work or Neither?

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on August 16, 2016 in In Excess
Olympic athletes are dedicated to their profession and spend hours every day training and exercising. But are Olympic athletes addicted to exercise, their work, or neither?

Consequences of Compulsive Sexual Behavior

By Jon E. Grant, JD, MD, MPH, Brian L. Odlaug, PhD, MPH, and Samuel R. Chamberlain, MD, PhD on August 12, 2016 in Why Can't I Stop?
Individuals with CSB (compulsive sexual behavior) may face a variety of medical complications, including unwanted pregnancies; sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS

Diagnosing Compulsive Sexual Behavior

By Jon E. Grant, JD, MD, MPH, Brian L. Odlaug, PhD, MPH, and Samuel R. Chamberlain, MD, PhD on August 08, 2016 in Why Can't I Stop?
Is compulsive sexual behavior a new disorder?

Canine Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

By Nicholas Dodman on August 07, 2016 in Dog Days
Have you ever wondered why some dogs exhibit pointless repetitive behaviors? I'm talking wrist licking, tail chasing, flank sucking, shadow chasing, and so on. If so, read on.

5 Rare and Unusual Psychological Syndromes

How many of these rare psychological afflictions are you familiar with?

Cognitive Rigidity: The 8-Ball From Hell

Cognitive Rigidity (difficulty changing mental sets) is a core feature of Autism Spectrum Disorder, and is commonly associated with a suite of challenging traits.

Your Relationship’s Personality

By Mark B. Borg, Jr, Ph.D., Grant H. Brenner, MD, & Daniel Berry, RN, MHA on August 01, 2016 in Irrelationship
What is a relationship's personality, and how does it protect itself? Defect and defense can be seen as interchangeable terms—both pinpointing the existence of irrelationship.