Essential Reads

The Psychological Transition From College to Pro Sports

Why do some falter while others thrive?

Born in the USA

The Evolutionary Psychology of Patriotism

Physically Active Children Grow Up to Be Healthier Adults

Childhood exercise increases the odds of being a healthy and active adult.

The Psychology of Competition

How competitions can lead you to do the right thing for the wrong reason

Recent Posts on Sport and Competition

March Madness

By Jeffrey Lieberman M.D. on March 24, 2015 in Shrink Speak
Students and parents rarely consider that they might need mental health services during college and often urgently. For this reason, they would be well advised to include the quality and availability of mental health services along with traditional considerations as they decide on the college of their choice.

Yes, You Can Get Addicted to Exercise

For approximately 3 percent of the population, striving to stay fit does them more harm than good.

Are You a Free-Range Parent? You Should Be

By Jim Taylor Ph.D. on March 23, 2015 in The Power of Prime
Children need to have the freedom to explore their worlds on their own without parents acting like helicopters, always hovering around to "protect" them for the apparently dangerous world in which they now. Yet, our children are fenced in, literally and metaphorically, almost every moment of every day.

Pressure: Meet The Villain

Pressure downgrades your "cognitive success tools," compromises your ethics, makes you a damaging parent, and can destroy your marriage. You'd be wise to learn how to manage pressure.

The Bourgeois Revolution

By Steven Mintz Ph.D. on March 23, 2015 in The Prime of Life
Many of our most powerful fantasies and expectations about marriage and family life emerged two centuries ago.

If Selfish Genes Build Brains, Why Aren’t We All Solipsists?

Contrary to what you might think, the “selfish gene” paradigm does not imply that we should be self-centered to the point of believing that only we exist.

A Peculiar Work Situation

By Fredric Neuman M.D. on March 22, 2015 in Fighting Fear
There may be worse problems at work than simply being paid very little and being asked to do the job of two or three people all at once.

Book Review: Wisdom from the Couch

By Ryan Howes PhD, ABPP on March 22, 2015 in In Therapy
Dr. Jennifer Kunst shares the warmer, friendlier side of Kleinian psychology in this interview and book review.

The Pathways of Experience

When asked to describe the most important challenges of living, Freud is reputed to have said – for there is no firm evidence of his doing so – that every person should “work and love.”

Does Creativity have its Dark Side?

We are used to thinking of creativity as an entirely positive attribute. However, new research on malevolent creativity suggests that the truly creative may put their novel thinking to dangerous uses under the right circumstances.

The Neurobiology of BDSM Sexual Practice

How can one experience pain, either the physical pain of a smack on the tush or the emotional pain of humiliation, as pleasurable? Aren’t pain and pleasure diametrically opposed? The answer, informed by neurobiology, is that the opposite of pleasure isn’t pain but ennui— a lack of interest in sensation and experience.

The Urge to Connect

A 3 billion year perspective on where the human race is headed

Yes, You Should Get Paid to Watch Basketball at Work

By Ron Friedman Ph.D. on March 19, 2015 in Glue
Think watching basketball on the job is a waste of company time? Think again.

Do You Like Your Sister?

Sympathy, compassion, understanding, respect, generosity and a willingness to forgive are essential features of every important relationship, including ones between members of an immediate family.

Do Dog People and Cat People Differ in Terms of Dominance?

New data suggest that dog people and cat people are selecting their preferred pet because it complements their own personality.

An Analytical Approach to Finding Your Career

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on March 18, 2015 in How To Do Life
What are your core skills, interests, values, and non-negotiables?

Science and the Online Dating Profile

Online dating is the new singles bar, one in which your words won't be drowned out by the music. But which words should you use? There is some scientific evidence about relatively more effective ways to turn an online contact into a real huggable moment.

Treating William Shakespeare

Asking which of the things I did that worked and which didn’t is exactly the same as asking which things the patient does in response I should feel rewarded by.

Don’t Close More State Hospitals

Should we bring back the state hospital system?

Martial Arts and Philosophy

What does pursuing a passion, with all the blood and pain involved in doing that properly, add to our lives?

Women Like Men With Big Medals

By Gregg Murray Ph.D. on March 15, 2015 in Caveman Politics
If our basic drive is to survive and reproduce, why do men, who have been the primary war fighters throughout human history, volunteer to subject themselves to the life-threatening dangers of war?

Procrastination Part I: Why You Do It

Procrastination: Why You Do It; What To Do About It. Procrastination is often used to manage struggles with self-esteem. By Jane Burka Ph.D. and Lenora Yuen, Ph.D.

Music Probably Doesn't Make Kids Smarter. So What?

Music lessons probably don't make kids smarter. But they have lots of other benefits.

7 Hints for Making It as an Artist

By Susan K Perry Ph.D. on March 13, 2015 in Creating in Flow
Are you a weekend artist who putters and creates but longs for more time to pursue a career as a “real” artist?

18 Ways to Add Oomph to Your Everyday Activities

Physical exercise has many brain health benefits, and reduces the risk of mild cognitive impairment and dementia. But you don’t have to hit the gym to get your heart pumping! Here are 18 ways to add umph to your everyday activities.

How Music Can Help You Get Ahead, The Right Way

By Jonathan Fader Ph.D. on March 13, 2015 in The New You
Music can often boost, or hurt, performance. So what do professionals and athletes need to know about the benefits and traps of using music to motivate?

The Psychology of Online Customization

The decision to buy a customized product is mediated by a number of unconscious factors that shape the customers’ final decision.

The 'Other' Marshmallow Test

The tower building exercise - and its marshmallow - reveals another secret of successful human behavior, in this case for mental health professionals: when we put the goals of our patients first and foremost, they are going to be more effective, and so will we.

Spring Sports: Concussion Safety Tips

By Harry Kerasidis M.D. on March 12, 2015 in Brain Trauma
Do you really know about concussions? With Spring and Summer come a variety of sports with high incidence rates for concussion. Whether it's water polo, soccer, lacrosse or other sports, every parent and coach should have a handle on basic concussion safety. Although this may sound like hyperbole, the future may depend on it.

The Importance of Failure: A Culture of False Success

It is becoming commonplace to give every child a trophy and generally dilute the competitive nature of sports. These changing trends are bringing new, long term challenges and repercussions that need to be taken note of. By fostering a false sense of success, we are ultimately doing a psychological disservice to children in more ways than one.