Sport and Competition Essential Reads

Living in the Here and Now

By Susan Hooper on February 26, 2015 in Detours and Tangents
For most of my life, I have wanted to be somewhere else, living an entirely different life. A calendar from years ago showed me that I had then—and may even have now—a life that other people might envy.

Red vs. Blue: Which Should You Choose?

By Jamie Madigan Ph.D. on February 26, 2015 in Mind Games
Has anyone ever done research on whether playing on the red team or the blue gives one a mental edge in games? Yep.

Traveling Through Time

By Dr. Jenni Ogden Ph.D. on February 23, 2015 in Trouble in Mind
Our ability to mentally travel back and forward in time gives us our sense of self and enhances our lives and coping abilities in many ways.

Generations Divided

By Steven Mintz Ph.D. on February 21, 2015 in The Prime of Life
We live in a society acutely conscious of age. Ours is also an intensely age segregated society that denigrates whole groups of people based on their age.

Pressure at the Academy Awards

By Hendrie Weisinger on February 18, 2015 in Thicken Your Skin
Most people perform below their capability in a pressure moment.

What Is Mindfulness and How Does It Work?

By Gregg Henriques on February 06, 2015 in Theory of Knowledge
Mindfulness is one of the most important developments in mental health in the past twenty years. Understand what it is and how it works.

Calmfidence: The Secret to True Resilience

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on February 02, 2015 in Ambigamy
Make the best of your worst-case scenarios.

NFL Message: Just Go Punch Someone

By Stanton Peele on February 02, 2015 in Addiction in Society
The NFL wants players to eschew unjustified, irrational, emotionally-driven violence—except if they feel like hitting people.

Superstitions and the Super Bowl

By Ira Hyman on January 28, 2015 in Mental Mishaps
Put on your team jersey and don your special hat. Make sure you have the right chips and dips. Are your friends ready? Will everyone be in the correct seat on the couch drinking the exact right beverage? Your team is depending on you. You’ve got to help them win. If you get any of this wrong, your team will lose and it will be your fault.

There's More to Yoga Than a Yoga Butt

The mental rewards of meditation.

17 Rules to Guide You Through Any Conflict

Whether in your relationships or your work life, it’s inevitable that you’ll be involved in a conflict with someone over something. These 17 principles will guide you in learning how best to put your emotions, motives, and communication skills to settle any of those conflicts in to produce successful results.

How to Have a Well-Behaved Child, Part 3

By Kenneth Barish Ph.D. on January 19, 2015 in Pride and Joy
Self-regulation, especially in childhood, is not learned well from consequences or punishment. The threat of punishment has its place, but it is a small part of learning discipline and self-control.

Charles Darwin's Daily Walks

What Charles Darwin's daily walk did for his mind

How to Win

Smart effort is a good thing. It might well win Urban Meyer another national championship. But he learned the hard way that bottomless, pull-your-hair-out effort produces more stress than success.

There Is Nothing Either Good or Bad But Thinking Makes It So

Lack of empathy is the black hole in our social relations.

In Tragedy, Putting Sports in Perspective

By Jim Taylor Ph.D. on January 07, 2015 in The Power of Prime
When young people lose their lives in sports, it is a bracing slap in the face about why we are involved in sports and a reminder about what is really important (and it’s not the results!). Let’s honor them by keeping sports in perspective as a marvelous part of life, but not life itself.

Why You and Your Siblings May Still Be Rivals

No matter how much siblings love each other, they’re bound to have their share of conflict, often over the attention of their parents. Whether you’re a sibling, or a parent of one, you know that sibling rivalry is real. Here are some insights to help you understand where it comes from and what the effects of parental favoritism can be over time.

7 Things We Just Learned About Human Nature

By Matthew Hutson on January 01, 2015 in Psyched!
Uri Gneezy and John List are known for their field experiments, testing hypotheses in the real world.

The Biggest Reason We Steal Other People’s Ideas

By Adam Grant Ph.D. on December 30, 2014 in Give and Take
Kleptomnesia: the idea theft you didn't see coming

A Defense of Jealousy

By Glenn C. Altschuler Ph.D. on December 23, 2014 in This Is America
In Jealousy, Peter Toohey provides a charming and instructive survey of a much maligned emotion. He examines jealousy in many of its guises, including sexual jealousy, the Oedipus Complex, and sibling rivalry. Aware that it can be an ugly emotion, he argues that jealousy is an evolutionary adaptation that "can be a beautiful thing."

How Your Favorite Team Is Making You Pack on Pounds

By Jonathan Fader Ph.D. on December 17, 2014 in The New You
If you’re a Raiders or Jets fan, this NFL season seems like punishment enough. But the vicarious sting of back-to-back losses might not be the only negative consequence of rooting for a losing team. Researchers are now saying fans are setting themselves up for an even bigger loss: binge eating.

Reversing the Psychology of Competition

By Linda Esposito LCSW on December 16, 2014 in From Anxiety to Zen
How to beat yourself at your own (mind) game. Entrepreneur extraordinaire Gary Vaynerchuk shares one amazing psychological hack for dealing with the competition.

Why Do People Care About Race?

By Jesse Marczyk on December 16, 2014 in Pop Psych
Given that humans were unlikely to have traveled far enough to encounter different races over our evolutionary history, the emphasis our mind can place on race seems a bit curious. Why might we attend to race as much as we do, and when might we stop noticing?

What One Thing Do You Want to Change about Your Life?

Change is, as they say, an inevitable fact of life. However, it’s not always so easy to make those changes that you most desire. By adopting the mindset of the "agile innovator,” however, those changes might be easier to tackle than you think.

4 Ways Our Relationships Change Who We Are

By Gwendolyn Seidman Ph.D. on December 16, 2014 in Close Encounters
When we are involved in serious romantic relationships, we find ourselves turning from a “me” to an “us”. That means that as we become increasingly committed to our partners, we find our self-concept actually changing. The “us” becomes “me”. But how does our self-concept change, and are these changes good or bad for us and for our relationships?

Come Play: It's the Bluff the Psychologist Challenge

With apologies to NPR’s Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! It is time to play the Bluff the Psychologist Challenge. Two of these effects are made up. Which one is real?

America’s Affluent Teen Crisis

By Linda Esposito LCSW on December 09, 2014 in From Anxiety to Zen
Before crying, "Poor little rich kid," ask yourself if you're contributing to Generation Stressed...

The Creative Investment of Worldplay

How can parents, educators, business leaders, and policy makers nurture creativity, prepare for inventiveness, and stimulate innovation? One compelling answer lies in fostering the invention of imaginary worlds, otherwise known as worldplay.

3 Goals for Playing Your Best on Game Day

By Jim Taylor Ph.D. on December 01, 2014 in The Power of Prime
Defining success in sport is a difficult task. When I ask most athletes and coaches how they define success, it is usually in terms of results. Though, admittedly, results are the ultimate determinant of success, I have found that a preoccupation with them can both interfere with achieving those results and can produce feelings of disappointment and frustration (or worse).

From Self to Selfie

By Susan Scheftel Ph.D. on November 28, 2014 in Evolving Minds
We do not always know where our smart machines leave off and we begin. The author describes "influencing machine" delusions which closely resemble some of our current technological realities. There are subtle risks in the ways smart machines may be restructuring the development of small childrens' minds.