Essential Reads

Want to Know What Constitutes Play?

First try asking what play isn’t

The Definitive Way To Respond to Others' Mistakes

Mistakes happen. The question is - how should we respond?

Contemplating Rothko

A practice to enhance seeing

The Neuroaesthetics of Handaxes

Were handaxes the first forms of art?

Recent Posts on Creativity

Finding Home with Jesse Malin

By Michael Friedman Ph.D. on April 15, 2015 in Brick by Brick
Jesse Malin shares how he has used music and creativity to create community.

Cities Are Green After All

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on April 15, 2015 in The Human Beast
Many of us are accustomed to think of urban smog as a root cause of global warming and environmental degradation that is pushing us to an existential precipice. Leading environmentalist Stewart Brand thinks otherwise. He explains why he was weaned from the village romanticism of a Mahatma Gandhi.

What Do I Need in Order to Live the Way I Want?

There is an "in spite of" quality to pursuing what is most important in life.

6 Ways You Can Put Your Dreams to Work for You

By Michelle Carr on April 15, 2015 in Dream Factory
Research shows that REM sleep integrates recent emotional memories by forming broad associations to past experience. Could your dreaming style steer the connections your mind makes during sleep?

Why Your Next Vacation Should Be Nowhere

By Gregory Ciotti on April 14, 2015 in Habits, Not Hacks
The value of stillness.

Navigating Through Your Divorce

By Angie Hallier on April 14, 2015 in Life After Divorce
Steps towards coping with divorce

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.

Add Humor to Your Job and Boost Your Career

Take the brave step of experimenting with more well-placed humor at your job. By going outside your normal comfort zone with some easy-to-follow tips, you may develop a much more appealing work environment for yourself, and advance your career.

How to Write an Hour Speech in 48 Hours

If you have to give a speech, like most people you procrastinate. Now, it's 48 hours before you have to talk. No worries, because here are six easy steps to writing a great speech in a pinch. Learn them and you will be a hit!

The Myth of Creativity On-Demand

By Jeff DeGraff Ph.D. on April 13, 2015 in Innovation You
Creativity will never be an item on a pull-down menu you can click to activate on-demand--creativity demands you. That doesn't mean you should just sit around waiting for a creative impulse.

How to Quit Unemployment; Help others get What They Want

By Dwain Schenck on April 13, 2015 in Reset
One of the best ways to jump back into the workforce, or better yet, create your own set of income streams, is to become a “people connector”. Most long-term unemployed I know have an insufficient network. They live in a career bubble. One of the best ways to build up your network is to take the blinders off and help others get what they want first.

'The Eureka Factor' and Your Creative Brain

By Jeffrey Davis M.A. on April 13, 2015 in Tracking Wonder
A creative insight can be as small as landing on an angle for a blog post or as big as discovering a fresh angle for a new book or business launch. The moment you gain such an insight flashes like lightning – and vanishes like lightning. Can you become aware of such moments? And can you replicate them?

7 Secrets to Hitting Your Reset Button

Dr. Michael Roizen, co-author with Dr. Oz on the best-selling YOU series, has just published a new book, “This is Your Do-Over.” The book provides 7 secrets to better physical health. Fortunately, these same secrets are the pathway to positive mental health, happiness, and well-being.

Your Ultimate Self-Care Assessment (with resources!)

Self-care is more than bubble baths. It's about how you approach each aspect of your life. Below are different categories of self-care with questions designed to help you reflect on how you're doing in each area. This isn't a tool to make you feel guilty. Approach these questions with gentleness and curiosity. Resources follow the questions. Enjoy!

Meet Danielle Meitiv: Fighting for Her Kids’ Rights

By Peter Gray on April 11, 2015 in Freedom to Learn
Danielle and Alexander Meitiv have been giving their children some of the same freedom that they themselves enjoyed as children, in a world that is safer than the one in which they grew up. As a consequence, they have been visited by police, and the county Child Protective Services have threatened to take their children away. Here is my interview with Danielle.

Let’s Play: How the Science of the Brain Is Changing Therapy

I recently attended a conference at UCLA entitled: Play, Creativity, Mindfulness and Neuroscience in Psychotherapy. The conference offered an approach that has been gaining increasing importance, namely that: “Throughout the lifespan, play supports neurological growth and development while building complex, skilled, flexible, responsive and socially adept brains."

What makes Seattle so sexy?

The city of Seattle is surrounded by water on all sides, and the topography forms a natural hourglass figure that in the autumn, winter, and spring months is perpetually moist from rain. The lush green landscape creates a feeling of love for and enjoyment of the natural world.

Diplomatic Synesthesia

By Maureen Seaberg on April 09, 2015 in Sensorium
Diplomat Mo Sacirbey reports the geometric synesthesia he experiences during negotiations...

What Makes a Book Great?

By Sheila Kohler on April 09, 2015 in Dreaming for Freud
I have been reading “Crime and Punishment” with a group of New Yorkers. Where else could one find a group of people interested enough to meet every week or so and discuss a book of this kind? We are all enjoying the book so much, so that at one point I asked somewhat guiltily if it might actually be considered “trash” rather than the great book history has decided it is.

Sleep For Sex

Forget better living through chemistry—start with sleep and sex.

How to Shift Unwholesome Thoughts

We can develop new skills at any age, especially with mindfulness training. Here are three techniques to help you shift painful afflictive thoughts & feelings.

How to Fix Any Problem: The 3 Step Approach

By Robert Taibbi L.C.S.W. on April 08, 2015 in Fixing Families
While the content of the problems we are forced to deal with every day constantly changes, the basic approach we need to put the problem to rest is always the same. Here are the three steps.

Black and Yellow: Blasian Narratives

These “Blasians” are creating something new, testing how much unity there is in such diverse experiences of Blackness and Asian-ness.

The Candy Man: A Prisoner Paints with Delectable Materials

Sometimes the art completed by a prison inmate transcends the limitations inherent in the rigidly controlled and tedious prison environment, with the artist often relying on very unusual materials—candy M & Ms to be precise—from which to create. This post presents the highly unorthodox yet beautiful art created by Blasi, a man locked up for murder over 30 years ago.

The Art of Breaking Up

An example of how to apply creative thinking to breaking up with someone

Love Affair Between Psychology and Poetry

By Diana Raab Ph.D. on April 07, 2015 in The Empowerment Diary
April is National Poetry month and a good time to reflect upon the long-standing connection and mutual respect between psychologists and poets. It has been said that every psychologist has a favorite poet, and every poet has a favorite psychologist. Both professions have keen observational skills and are able to identify deep inner truths of any given moment.

The Coming Climate Disruptions: Are You Hopeful?

Hope is such a muddled word: “We must have hope!” “There is light at the end of the tunnel!” Why do climate books and speeches have to end on a note of hope? Re-thinking hope in the face of overwhelming climate changes.

The Wisdom Behind the Saying “Get Some Perspective?”

Maintaining a new habit becomes easier when people ask themselves why they are doing an activity rather than how they are doing it.

The Best Way to Look for the Next Big Thing

By Jeff DeGraff Ph.D. on April 06, 2015 in Innovation You
Pay attention. Look up, look down, look all around yourself. Look for the things that other people don't see. Chances are if you see an obvious occasion to innovate, other people see it, too.

Is Mind Wandering a Good or Bad Thing?

By Ray Williams on April 05, 2015 in Wired for Success
Is mind wandering a good thing or bad thing? Is it the same as being on “autopilot,” without being conscious of what you are doing? There seems to be several differing perspectives on these questions.