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My Cats and Me and OCD I have three cats, Sparrow (bottom left), Klio (bottom right) and Daisy (top). And this will probably sound melodramatic, but over the past 10 years, when I have been in … ...
The psychedelic drug ayahuasca could help us better understand and treat anxiety: study Long-term use of ayahuasca, a psychedelic drink used medicinally by indigenous Amazon tribes, may have the potential to serve as the basis for treatments for anxiety disorders, according to a study on fear reactions in rats published in the journal PLoS ONE. Ayahuasca has traditionally been used in healing ceremonies, and altered emotional states and [...]
Two psychological strategies can curb negative thoughts New research shows that two types of psychological strategies — cognitive restructuring and defusion — can help people cope with negative thoughts. Heading a team of Swedish scientists, Andreas Larsson points out that up to 99 percent of the world’s population may experience negative thoughts. These ideas are the kind of unwanted thoughts that occur regularly, such as worrying about being unloved [...]
When You Fear You Don’t Fit Reinforcement is a term used in operant conditioning to refer to anything that increases the likelihood that a response will occur.  If every time you stay home on Sunday night … ...
Is Codependency Blaming the Victim?   When someone first suggested I was codependent, I was offended and angry. I thought codependency implied that I was to blame for what happened to me. I was incredibly … ...
Bipolar Tale: How Rainy Days, Rasslin, and a Jewish...   Do you remember what it was like to be young? I mean, I’m 31, and am still considered young in many circles (believe it or not), but go back … ...
8 Steps For Handling Passive-Aggressive People How to spot someone who is passive-aggressive and how to handle them. ** PsyBlog's new ebook is out now: "Spark: 17 Steps That Will Boost Your Motivation For Anything" **
Narcissists keep a close eye on your selfies — but don’t expect a ‘like’ from them Individuals with a higher degree of narcissism keep an eye on the selfies that other people post on social networking websites like Facebook. However, they don’t appear to have an desire to “like” or comment on those selfies, according to research published in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking. The study by Jung-Ah Lee [...]
Codependency and Narcissism: 10 Similar-Yet-Distinct Patterns You Need to...     On the surface, the dance of narcissism and codependency consists of two completely opposite dance partners. There are at least 10 similar,  in the patterns between the two, and seeing these … ...
Codependency and Narcissism: 10 Similar-Yet-Distinct Patterns...     On the surface the dance of narcissism and codependency seems to consist of completely opposite partners. To see what’s really happening in a couple relationship with these dynamics, however, … ...
20 More Questions to Connect with Yourself and Someone... A few Sundays ago, I shared these 20 questions, which we can ask ourselves and our loved ones. When we ask questions—whether they’re serious or silly—we get to dig deeper. We find … ...
Neuroscientists use brain scans to examine how we read Neuroscientists at UC Davis have come up with a way to observe brain activity during natural reading. It’s the first time researchers have been able to study the brain while reading actual texts, instead of individual words, and it’s already helping settle some ideas about just how we read. The research has potential implications for [...]
Neuroscientists identify brain circuits that could play a role in mental illnesses Some mental illnesses may stem, in part, from the brain’s inability to correctly assign emotional associations to events. For example, people who are depressed often do not feel happy even when experiencing something that they normally enjoy. A new study from MIT reveals how two populations of neurons in the brain contribute to this process. [...]
Curiosity leads us to seek out painful and unpleasant outcomes Curiosity is a powerful motivator, leading us to make important discoveries and explore the unknown. But new research shows that our curiosity is sometimes so powerful that it leads us to choose potentially painful and unpleasant outcomes that have no apparent benefits, even when we have the ability to avoid these outcomes altogether. The findings [...]
30 minutes of aerobic exercise helps overcome sadness We’re all aware of the physical advantages of exercising and the emotional advantages have also been well-documented. But how much do we know about the psychological impact of engaging in physical activity? This study from Cognition and Emotion demonstrates the positive impact of acute aerobic exercise on individuals experiencing emotion regulation difficulties. Emily E. Bernstein [...]
Simultaneous cocaine and alcohol use linked to suicide risk In a general sense, medical studies support the popular intuition — a staple of movies and literature — that suicidal behavior and substance misuse are linked. But the relationship between the two is not so simple. A new study of hundreds of suicidal emergency department (ED) patients from around the U.S. found that the significance [...]
Acetaminophen could be hampering our ability to notice errors It’s been known for more than a century that acetaminophen is an effective painkiller, but according to a new U of T study it could also be impeding error-detection in the brain. The research, authored by a team including postdoctoral fellow Dan Randles and researchers from the University of British Columbia, is the first neurological [...]
Differentiating the Pursuit of Excellence from Perfectionism... We want to excel in our lives — striving for excellence in all that we do. But can we differentiate our noble pursuit of excellence from a dysfunctional desire to be perfect? A job well done can be enormously fulfilling. It can be meaningful and … ...
Spike activity 08-04-2016 Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: Why we’re living in an era of neuroscience hype. Excellent piece in The Daily Dot by well-known neuroscience blogger Neuroskeptic. The Atlantic has a wonderful piece on teaching neuroscience in prison. No, not some dodgy course on ‘better living through neuroscience’ – genuine neuroscience. … Continue reading "Spike activity 08-04-2016"
5 Library-Inspired Prompts to Spark Your Creativity Libraries are beautiful places—even when they’re not. That is, even a shabby library with 70s carpet and stark white walls is still beautiful. After all, it houses worlds of wisdom that anyone … ...