How To Soothe and Cure The Busy, Busy Mind

How To Cure The All Too Busy, Busy Mind

We might say there are two types of mind within us -- the mind that is generative and the mind that is receptive. Generative mind keeps us awake at night, playing nonexistent chess games with the circumstances of our lives.

Can You Unintentionally Bully Someone?

Can You Unintentionally Bully Someone?

I was nine. Some girl, maybe around 15 or 16, old enough to tower over me, asked whether Bill Beattie was my brother. I nodded. Without saying another word she grabbed me by my hair and started to drag me across the street – pulling out clumps of it.

'Kissing Can Be Dangerous': How Old Advice For TB Seems Strangely Familiar Today

'Kissing Can Be Dangerous': How Old Advice For TB Seems Strangely Familiar Today

In the first half of the 20th century, people with TB were advised to stop kissing to protect their friends and family from contracting the dreaded disease. In 1905, delegates at an International Congress on Tuberculosis in Paris described kissing as “dangerous, detrimental and responsible for countless diseases”. 

Research On African DNA Sets Out To Close The Knowledge Gap On Mental Illness

Research On DNA Sets Out To Close The Knowledge Gap On Mental Illness

In July 2009, a woman brought her husband to the hospital where our colleagues work in western Kenya.  She reported that for several years he had been behaving abnormally, sleeping poorly, hearing voices that no one else could hear, and believing that people were talking about him and plotting to harm him.

Depression, Anxiety and Heart Disease Risk All Linked To A Single Brain Region

Depression, Anxiety and Heart Disease Risk All Linked To A Single Brain Region

Although depression and anxiety affect millions of people worldwide, there’s still much we don’t know about them. In fact, we still don’t fully understand which brain regions are involved in depression and anxiety, and how they differ between people with varying symptoms. 

Why Lockdowns Don't Necessarily Infringe On Freedom

Why Lockdowns Don't Necessarily Infringe On Freedom

Europe is dealing with its “second wave” of COVID-19. And governments seem powerless to stem the tide. Dutch political leaders find it difficult to convince their citizens to wear face masks.

What is Beauty? Beauty is in the Heart of the Beholder

What is Beauty? Beauty is in the Heart of the Beholder

One day at a retreat - I was quite young at the time - I was in a group, and we were asked to fall deeply still and find a restful place within. Then, when we opened our eyes, we saw a projected image of a beautiful peach-coloured rose...

Why Some People Can't Admit Defeat When They Lose

Why Some People Can't Admit Defeat When They Lose

We cannot psychoanalyse Trump from a distance, though I am sure many of us have tried. We can, however, apply psychological theories and models to understand the denial of defeat.

Getting in Touch With, and Becoming Friends With, Fear

Getting in Touch With, and Becoming Friends With, Fear

Some of our fears are so slight, or come up so rarely, that we ignore them for the most part. Yet, all our fears are with us constantly whether or not we acknowledge their presence. They reside in our subconscious and create havoc in our life. Whether your fear is of death or of spiders, that fear runs your life.

Why Trust Is Vital To Public Health Strategy

Why Trust Is Vital To Public Health Strategy

Trust is a crucial component of effective public health policy. It is also a two-way street. People need to trust the authorities – universities, employers, the government – that are asking them to behave in a certain way, but they also need to feel trusted by these authorities.

Living A Guilt-Free Life

Living A Guilt-Free Life

What is guilt? Most people know the answer. It's the feeling of responsibility for doing something wrong, or having done something wrong in the past. I would say we all have this feeling of guilt. It's universal. We've all made mistakes, sometimes big ones. And feelings of guilt are too often the result.

To Change Coronavirus Behaviours, Think Like A Marketer

To Change Coronavirus Behaviours, Think Like A Marketer

COVID-19 has been a humbling experience. From a frayed pandemic early-warning system to a shortage of personal protective equipment for front-line workers, public health experts have been playing catch up. But it has also been a teachable moment.

Why Our Obsession with Happy Endings Can Lead to Bad Decisions

Why Our Obsession with Happy Endings Can Lead to Bad Decisions

All’s well that ends well, wrote William Shakespeare in 1623. The words may still seem to ring true today, but turns out they don’t. We have just busted the old myth in a recent brain imaging experiment, published in the Journal of Neuroscience.

Why Questions, Both Good and Bad, Matter

Why Questions, Both Good and Bad, Matter

Children are naturally inquisitive and tolerant. Many constantly ask questions. At some point, most of them – most of us – just stop. Why does this happen?

Anger as a Tool for Growth, not for Destruction

Anger as a Tool for Growth, not for Destruction

Everyone gets angry. Some people show it openly and others don't. In relationship, anger can be either healthy or unhealthy. How you process it is what determines whether it becomes a tool for growth or a source of pain and destruction.

Authenticity and Naturalness as Antidotes to Fear and Anxiety

Authenticity and Naturalness as Antidotes to Fear and Anxiety

You have been instructed to worry and fret all of your life. This has occurred through all sorts of means—school, friends, religious doctrine, literature, television, movies, history, and family. The idea of worrying about your family has even been exalted as a form of love. It is NOT! Worry is a mental construct that obstructs flow and naturalness.

Fear and Relationships Are Not A Good Match

Fear and Relationships Are Not A Good Match

Fear patterns begin early in life, affect every relationship we have, and waste a lot of energy. Our inner dragons of fear can make us run from love and intimacy, hide from the very things we say we most want, repeat the same mistakes over and over, and see the world in black and white terms.

Who Is That Unmasked Man? It's Time to Liberate Masculinity

Who is that Unmasked Man? It's Time to Liberate Masculinity

As a psychologist whose specialty is treating men, I believe that behind many of the threats we face are the invisible, dangerous, dysfunctional and persistent beliefs that manhood is about power and control. These beliefs about what it means to be a man are what I refer to as “confined masculinity.”

How Optimism Can Be Dangerous During A Pandemic

How Optimism Can Be Dangerous During A Pandemic

For those of us who insist on seeing the glass half full, even when the miserable brigade point out that it’s also half empty, COVID-19 poses particular challenges.

3 Steps to Pull Yourself into the Now and Overcome Fear

3 Steps to Pull Yourself into the Now and Overcome Fear

Our minds are constantly in the past, focusing on our memories; or in the future, focusing on our expectations. But both of these states of mind are breeding grounds for fear. If we can pull our attention back to the present moment, the fear subsides. Here’s how to shift into ...

How Much Do Our Genes Restrict Free Will?

How Much Do Our Genes Restrict Free Will?

Many of us believe we are masters of own destiny, but new research is revealing the extent to which our behaviour is influenced by our genes.

How Doing Good May Make People More Attractive

How Doing Good May Make People More Attractive

Giving is good for you. For years, researchers have been finding that people who support charities or volunteer for causes can benefit from being generous.

How and Why You Must Forgive Yourself, Completely

How and Why You Must Forgive Yourself, Completely

Most of us have some corner where we cannot forgive ourselves. Our hearts ache for the choices made or denied, and we bury that ache beneath a blanket of guilt or high-minded justifications.

Be Kind: Kindness in Action

 Be Kind: Kindness in Action

The most difficult act of bravery is often kindness. There are a hundred reasons not to help a stranger passed out in a parking lot. It’s potentially dangerous. The person might be “crazy,” have a communicable disease, or smell. The situation isn’t our problem, we’re busy and don’t have time, and so on.

How Are You Coping During The Pandemic?

How Are You Coping During The Pandemic?

The pandemic has posed unprecedented challenges. Many of us have lost work, gained carer responsibilities and grappled with social isolation.

Why The Media May Be To Blame For Your Arachnophobia

Why The Media May Be To Blame For Your Arachnophobia

Spiders have an unfortunate media presence. No number of studies emphasising their ecological value or the potential of their silks to inspire wonder materials can overcome the negative press.

Can Guilt Actually Be Good For You?

Why Guilt Can Be Good For You

We spend so much time helping people who punish themselves and constrain their lives with an overdeveloped sense of guilt that it's easy to forget the other side of the coin.

11 Ways To Stop Procrastinating—For Good

11 Ways To Stop Procrastinating—For Good

Most of us feel guilty or lazy when we put things off until a later date or time, but procrastination is normal and happens to everyone. The key is not to eliminate the word from your vocabulary, but to find ways to work and rest smarter so that tasks get done.

Why Hope Isn't Mere Wishful Thinking

Why Hope Isn't Mere Wishful Thinking

The COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the world has prompted job losses and business closures, and an increase in stress and anxiety as lockdowns separate people from their friends and families.

World Service as a Gateway to Soul and to Happiness

World Service as a Gateway to Soul and to Happiness

For me, being of service means working on behalf of and thus taking a stand for a cause or causes that we believe in and which are dear to our hearts, and where we feel we can make some kind of positive contribution towards a healthier world.

Being Gentle with Yourself and Others

Being Gentle with Yourself and Others

I know you're carrying a lot right now. In your life, in your mind, inside your emotional body, too. The load is heavy. I just want you to know, I feel you. Today, I want to send you some tender love. It won't solve everything, but it might lighten the load for just a moment or two. 

Are You Dreading Going Back To The Workplace?

Are You Dreading Going Back To The Workplace?

As some of us return to the workplace, or are planning to do so in the future, we face the challenges of a changed environment of social distancing rules and restrictions.

Panic Attack Signs and What To Do If You Have One

Panic Attack Signs and What To Do If You Have One

We are living in scary and uncertain times, so it’s hardly surprising that a new study has found the number of Google searches for “anxiety” and “panic attacks” has increased since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

The Gentle Art of Blessing: Changing the World in One Day

The Gentle Art of Blessing: Changing the World in One Day

Every day, everyone we meet can be assisted by simply our changing our attitude and our focus. We can all change the world today. On passing people in the street, on the bus, in places of work and play, bless them...

Kshamā: Patience, Peace and Gratitude in a Time of Pandemic

Kshamā – Patience, Peace and Gratitude in a Time of Pandemic

There are many virtues appropriate to our present circumstances that are extolled in the wisdom of Sanskrit: Abhayam (अभयम्) fearlessness; Balam (बलम्) strength; Buddhi (बुद्धि) reason, Kshamā (क्षमा) patience and forbearance, and so on.

Commitment: How Do We Know What to Commit To?

 

Commitment: How Do We Know What to Commit To?

Sometimes it seems that commitment is a four-letter word. It is a word that oftentimes brings up fear as well as insecurity and doubt. What is the underlying fear to committing ourselves to an action, project, or relationship? Is it...

Managing and Avoiding the Overload Syndrome: Learning to Say "No"

Managing & Avoiding the Overload Syndrome: Learning to Say "No" to Obligations

This temporary anxiety and depression state results from becoming overburdened with too many work, household, volunteer, or social obligations, and subsides promptly after reducing the excessive responsibilities. It can best be likened to overloading an electrical outlet and blowing a fuse. This situation is becoming...

How We've Created Duality and Separation, and What To Do About It

 How We've Created Duality and Separation... And What To Do About It

Instead of embracing change and uniqueness, we are raised to fear both. Our conditioned ego asks that we expend huge amounts of energy trying to create a false sense of security and stability. It chides us mercilessly if we attempt to break out of the dysfunctional norms that our culture has placed on us.

Rebirth: Love Will Replace Fear

Rebirth: Love Will Replace Fear

The sacred has always been with us. It’s right there outside the window. It’s right there outside the walls we’ve built around ourselves, right there outside the doors of perception made opaque by the human ego.

Reducing the Obesity Stigma: Are We Over Weight Yet?

Reducing the Obesity Stigma: Are We Over Weight Yet?

The 2019 report from Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam focused on addressing different forms of stigma. Included in the report was one form of stigma — obesity or weight stigma — that has proven remarkably difficult to overcome. We are hoping to change that.

What Groundhog Day and My Time In A Monastery Taught Me About Lockdown

What Groundhog Day And My Time In A Monastery Taught Me About Lockdown

Stage 4 lockdown is upon Melbourne for the next six weeks. How do we cope with the new normal of staying in our houses for 23 hours a day? One popular solution is to immerse ourselves in stories. Topical films, such as Contagion (2011), have found a new life in the pandemic. But a more prescient film, for lockdown, is the cult classic Groundhog Day (1993), directed by Harold Ramis.

Memories Are Very Precious

Memories Are Very Precious

During this pandemic, so much has been taken from us. Everyone is missing something important for them. For us, the fact that we cannot do our workshops, work that we have done for the past 45 years and we dearly love, causes hurt to our hearts.

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FROM THE EDITORS

Why I Should Ignore COVID-19 and Why I Won't
by Robert Jennings, InnerSelf.com
My wife Marie and I are a mixed couple. She's Canadian and I am an American. For the past 15 years we have spent our winters in Florida and our summers in Nova Scotia.
InnerSelf Newsletter: November 15, 2020
by InnerSelf Staff
This week, we reflect on the question: "where do we go from here?" Just as with any rite of passage, whether graduation, marriage, birth of a child, a pivotal election, or the loss (or finding) of a…
America: Hitching Our Wagon to the World and to the Stars
by Marie T Russell and Robert Jennings, InnerSelf.com
Well, the US presidential election is now behind us and it's time to take stock. We must find common ground between young and old, Democrat and Republican, Liberal and Conservative to truly make…
InnerSelf Newsletter: October 25, 2020
by InnerSelf Staff
The "slogan" or sub-title for the InnerSelf website is "New Attitudes---New Possibilities", and that is exactly the theme of this week's newsletter. The purpose of our articles and authors is to…
InnerSelf Newsletter: October 18, 2020
by InnerSelf Staff
These days we are living in mini-bubbles... in our own homes, at work, and in public, and possibly in our own mind and with our own emotions. However, living in a bubble, or feeling like we are…