Essential Reads

Why Narcissists Feel They Need to Look So Good

It’s well known that people high in narcissism have an endless need to look good. What’s less clear is why. A new study sheds light on why, and how, narcissists seek to seem ideal.

How Do People Explain Puzzling Behaviors?

By Art Markman Ph.D. on November 21, 2016 in Ulterior Motives
Suppose you see somebody do something odd. How do you explain what they just did? A new paper in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin answers that question.

New Findings on Emotions in Borderline Personality Disorder

Being rejected is particularly painful for people with borderline personality disorder as shown by new research on emotional regulation and its relation to rejection sensitivity.

The Machiavellian Boss

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on November 18, 2016 in A Sideways View
How do we define and understand the Machiavellian approach to life? Is it a personality trait or a belief system? What does psychology have to say about this 500-year-old concept?

More Posts on Personality

What is Psychology’s Single Most Brilliant Discovery?

What is the most profoundly important thing we've learned from 150 years of scientific psychology? Here is one nomination.

Hire Emotionally Intelligent People

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on November 29, 2016 in A Sideways View
It is not difficult to spot those who are, or are not, emotionally intelligent. Certainly emotional intelligence is a high benefit in the work place for all concerned

The Dangerous “Reveries” of HBO's Westworld Series

By Amy Fries on November 28, 2016 in The Power of Daydreaming
What do Stephen Hawking and HBO's new series Westworld have in common? Dire warnings of ways in which artificial intelligence can learn to out-maneuver us.

The Only Way to Succeed in Your Romantic Relationship

If we are used to the high of being in love and then we suddenly feel nothing but the occasional closeness and sexual attraction, we are bound to think that something is wrong.

Is Your Past Controlling Your Life?

By Lisa Firestone Ph.D. on November 25, 2016 in Compassion Matters
Many patterns we develop in our past shape how we act and react in the present. So, what are the ways we get stuck in the past and relive rather than live our lives?

Parents Cut Off by Adult Children: Clueless? Part 2

By David M. Allen M.D. on November 25, 2016 in A Matter of Personality
In a previous post I opined that most parents whose adult children have cut them off know the real reason. That is not always the case. This post describes one common issue.

Grit and How to Grow It

“Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.”

The Psychology of Animal Torture

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on November 23, 2016 in In Excess
Why would anyone want to deliberately inflict pain on a defenseless animal?

The 5 Types of High-Conflict People & What To Do

You know them - they're in your workplace, in your home, and now at your Thanksgiving table. People that love conflict. Here's how to handle the 5 types of high-conflict people.

When Democracy Fails

By Steve Taylor Ph.D. on November 21, 2016 in Out of the Darkness
It’s time we had psychological checks on power, in addition to constitutional checks.

How to Overcome an Insecure Avoidant Attachment Style

Trust should always be treated as relative to a person.

5 Lessons About Success from Nobel Laureates

By Susan K Perry Ph.D. on November 19, 2016 in Creating in Flow
Nobel laureates are frequently asked their secret to winning a Nobel Prize. Read what guest blogger David Pratt learned by examining laureates' lives.
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What Is the Link Between Heroism and Antisocial Behavior?

Research suggests a seemingly paradoxical link between antisocial behavior and heroism. Psychopathy has been suggested as a linking factor, but this seems unlikely.
"green apples with rotten parts"/Fanny's Pix/Flickr

Who’s Not in the “Basket of Deplorables”?

Hillary Clinton called half of Trump supporters "deplorables". But why would someone who is not misogynist, racist, or homophobic vote for Trump?

5 Faces of Toxic Relationships

By Ralph Ryback M.D. on November 16, 2016 in The Truisms of Wellness
Toxicity presents itself in all different forms and can play out like a Greek tragedy, where actors walk out on stage wearing various masks. Here are five toxic personality types.

What Makes People Easy or Hard to Get Along With?

By Seth J. Gillihan Ph.D. on November 15, 2016 in Think, Act, Be
A brand new meta-analysis brings together two lines of research about human traits: personality and emotional intelligence. Are these labels just two names for the same thing?

“Preventure” – A Program for Fighting Teen Addiction

By Elizabeth Wagele on November 15, 2016 in The Career Within You
Preventure has reduced binge drinking, frequent drug use and alcohol-related problems.

Creating Ads We'd Be Glad to See

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on November 13, 2016 in How To Do Life
An Up-and-Comer interview with Sandra Matz

"It's the Psychology, Stupid!"

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on November 12, 2016 in Ambigamy
Trump pretended to be invincible. He never lost a face-to-face interaction. Invincibility sells. Maybe that more than anything else won him the election.

He's abnormal; she's normal: That's (a reason) why Trump won

By Nassir Ghaemi M.D., M.P.H. on November 11, 2016 in Mood Swings
Trump won despite the repeated critique that he wasn't fit to be president because of narcissistic temperament. This critique was wrong, psychologically and politically. Here's why

Can Psychology Explain Donald Trump’s Victory?

A particularly interesting finding was that the well-being of political right-wingers seems to be rather stable irrespective of the level of threat.

Vote for Your Own Character

Voters arrive at their decision to vote for a candidate in different ways. After the election, we should respect the decisions of others as coming from different perspectives.

Narcissists Are Aggressive Jerks!

By Brad J. Bushman Ph.D. on November 07, 2016 in Get Psyched!
Does self-love or self-hate underly aggression and violence?
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Donald Trump, Orchestra Conductor

Like all demagogues, Trump is not a creator but an orchestrator of popular resentment.

Narcissistic Men and Their Mothers

There comes a time when the boy of a narcissistic mother will come across to the mother as a mysterious and dangerous testosterone-filled creature.
Lynn E. O'Connor

Fighting for Our Democracy

By Lynn E. O'Connor Ph.D. on November 03, 2016 in Our Empathic Nature
This has become a serious socio-cultural problem; paranoia is contagious; we’ve all become paranoid temporarily, thanks to the conspiratorial thinking of the paranoid...

The Sexual Censorship Controversy

By Diana Raab Ph.D. on November 03, 2016 in The Empowerment Diary
After its publication last week, Anais Nin's latest book of erotica was censored by Amazon, though Amazon later withdrew its censorship.

Outdated Blueprints of Masculinity Often Sabotage Older Men

By Christopher Bergland on November 02, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
A new study reports that clinging to outdated ideas of "what it means to be a man" can backfire as men get older.

Michelle Obama, Super-Popular 1-Perfectionist 1st Lady

By Elizabeth Wagele on November 01, 2016 in The Career Within You
Enneagram Ones, including Michelle, are highly principled: “You work hard for what you want in life, your word is your bond, and you treat people with respect..."

Mean People May Be Drawn to Certain Careers, Study Finds

By Vinita Mehta Ph.D., Ed.M. on October 31, 2016 in Head Games
If you work with a lot of difficult people, it may not be bad luck. It may be due to your chosen profession.