Gender Outranks Race When Kids Describe Themselves

Gender Outranks Race When Kids Describe ThemselvesKids ages 7 to 12 rate gender as more important to their social identities than race, say researchers. The research also suggests children of color think about race differently than their white peers do.

6 Ways To Avoid A Holiday Financial Hangover

stop overspendingThe shopping frenzy of Black Friday and Cyber Monday are the starting gun for many to the annual ritual of excessive spending over the Christmas period. The average Black Friday consumer is expected to spend £203 ($252 US) on the day this year, double last year’s figure.

Taking the Vulnerable Path to Achieve Authentic Long-term Success

Taking the Vulnerable Path to Achieve Authentic Long-term SuccessWhen we allow our fears to drive our choices, the actions we do not take and the opportunities we allow to pass us by are symbolic of us rejecting the life we genuinely desire. Conversely, when we find the courage to face our fears directly...

Why Friends And Parents Play A Big Part In Making A Criminal

Why Friends And Parents Play A Big Part In Making A CriminalFor most of us, the fear of punishment or social rejection keeps us from behaviour deemed unacceptable and prevents us from committing crimes. But how many would transgress if they knew they could get away with it?

I'm Grateful... But...

I'm Grateful... But...As I reflect on the tradition of Thanksgiving, I am reminded that Thanksgiving needs to take place every day, and every single moment of the day. Maybe that's what mindful meditation is all about... remembering to be grateful and appreciative...

How Confirmation Bias Helps Explain Why Pundits Got The Election Wrong

How Confirmation Bias Helps Explain Why Pundits Got The Election WrongAs post mortems of the 2016 presidential election began to roll in, fingers started pointing to what psychologists call the confirmation bias as one reason many of the polls and pundits were wrong in their predictions of which candidate would end up victorious.

5 Ways to Handle Difficult Emotional Situations

5 Ways to Handle Difficult Emotional SituationsLearning healthy ways—a collection of skills that researchers call resilience—to move through adversity can help us cope better and recover more quickly, or at least start heading in that direction.

Why It Is Useful To Understand The Role Of Genetics In Behavior

Why It Is Useful To Understand The Role Of Genetics In BehaviorScientists have studied twins for many years to understand how genes and environments influence differences among individuals, spanning conditions such as cancer and mental health to characteristics such as intelligence and political beliefs.

Opening Your Heart Wider Than Your Fears

Opening Your Heart Wider Than Your FearsFor years I understood the concepts of loving more and unconditional acceptance. I knew the woman I wanted to be: more loving, more accepting, more compassionate. But in day-to-day living I struggled with keeping my heart open, especially when I felt afraid...

In the Crossfire: Bilingual in Québec

In the Crossfire: Bilingual in Québec Throughout primary school, I became accustomed to being in the crossfire of two opposing camps. When a French friend would insult my English friend, I would raise my hand, step forward, and launch into my own variation of Martin Luther King Jr’s “I have a dream” speech...

Why There Is No Healing Without Grief

Why There Is No Healing Without GriefFor many women, people of color, LGBTQ people, Muslims and immigrants, the victory of Donald Trump seems to have endorsed discrimination against them.

Does It Really Pay To Be Generous?

Does It Really Pay To Be Generous?What do you look for in a partner? Surely that depends on what the partner is for – you’d probably want a business partner to be innovative, a choir buddy to be musical and a romantic partner to be attractive and funny.

Use Your IGS To Move From Fear, Anxiety, Stress, and Reaction

Use Your IGS To Move From Fear, Anxiety, Stress, and ReactionMahatma Gandhi once instructed his devotees to “be the change you wish to see in the world.” His point was: don’t identify the problems of the world and kvetch over the short­comings of humanity. He advocated instead actively embody­ing the higher qualities of being...

To Deal With Election Anger, Try A Little Tenderness and Neuroscience

To Deal With Election Anger Try A Little TendernessThe vitriolic presidential campaign left many of us feeling anger, and the election of Donald J. Trump as President hasn’t erased it. Hearing about or seeing vicious personal attacks, criticism of parents who have lost a child to war, accusations of fraud and talk of sexual assault have affected our psyches, souls and bodies.

Healing our World: One Individual, One Family, One Nation at a Time

Healing our World: One Individual, One Family, One Nation at a TimeWhat we’re being called to do as a species before we either destroy ourselves or most of life on our planet is to meet ourselves fully. We must have the courage to meet our own prejudices and encounter every single place within us that would rather resort to blame than to face the collective human pain body.

The Fortress Complex: How The West Became Obsessed With Home Security

The Fortress Complex: How The West Became Obsessed With Home SecurityThat famous phrase, “an man’s home is his castle”, neatly captures longstanding ideas about what the private home really is: a place which we can control and defend, a private territory where we decide who enters and who doesn’t.

Humane Business: Giving Back Is The Future

Humane Business: Giving Back Is The FutureThe desire to create a more humane business often coincides with the desire to be a force for good in the world. This reflects the higher purpose we feel emerging inside us as a result of greater self-awareness. Such increased self-awareness eventually expands to include the surrounding community and the world as a whole...

Why You Shouldn't Blame Lying On The Brain

Why You Shouldn't Blame Lying On The BrainThe recent finding that telling lies induces changes in the brain has stimulated a number of misrepresentations that may wreak more harm on our understanding than the lies on which they report.

Why We're Obsessed With And Afraid Of Monsters

Why We're Obsessed With And Afraid Of MonstersFear continues to saturate our lives: fear of nuclear destruction, fear of climate change, fear of the subversive, and fear of foreigners.

How To Overcome Exam Anxiety

How To Overcome Exam AnxietyDo you feel like your mind freezes during exams? Do you find yourself thinking “I really can’t do this”? Does your heart race fast or do you find it hard to breathe during exams?

The Real Reason Clowns Scare Us

The Real Reason Clowns Scare UsThis Halloween may be the scariest in a long time. Facing the usual huge crowds of zombies, witches and vampires, deep down, many of us most fear running into one of the “killer clowns” that have been spotted in creepy places across the world over the past few months.

Wherever You Look, Looking is the Key

Wherever You Look, Looking is the KeyThere is a story that has kept popping up in my work over the years. It is one of the tales of Nasruddin, a Sufi amalgam of wise man and fool. He has the peculiar gift of both acting out our basic confusion and at the same time opening us up to our deeper wisdom.

Learning That People Can Develop And Change Boosts Cooperation

Learning That People Can Develop And Change Boosts CooperationA research team of psychologists has found that teaching Jewish-Israeli and Palestinian-Israeli teenagers that groups are generally capable of change—without ever mentioning a specific adversary—can significantly improve their ability to cooperate.

Why We Go Crazy For The Gross Stuff On Halloween

Why We Go Crazy For The Gross Stuff On HalloweenHalloween is a chance to seek out the spooky, as well as the gross and horrifying. We enjoy the emotional rush—free of any actual danger—from both, says Daniel Kelly.

Why Male Chauvinism Appeals To Some Voters More Than Others

Why Male Chauvinism Appeals To Some Voters More Than OthersEven after mounting evidence of Donald Trump’s exploitative and demeaning treatment of women, his standing in the polls still hovers above 40%. On the face of it that’s more than a little shocking – but less surprising is the gender split among his supporters.

Early Fear Of Abandonment May Harm Adult Health

Early Fear Of Abandonment May Harm Adult HealthA new study shows low socioeconomic status and fear of abandonment early in life can lead to poor health in adulthood—regardless of adult socioeconomic status.

Fear is a Thought Monster Ruling the Peanut Gallery in Your Head

Fear is a Thought Monster Ruling the Peanut Gallery in Your HeadHow often in your life have you avoided doing something because of the terrifying story you concocted in your head? Maybe you avoid flying or swimming in the ocean (amazing how the film Jaws forced many of us back on to the beach). We’ve learned to tell ourselves the story of fear so well...

Why People Don't Evacuate Before A Major Storm

Army National Guardsmen help residents evacuate their homes in Fayetteville, North Carolina on Oct. 8. U.S. Army National Guard/Flickr, CC BYAs Hurricane Matthew approached the Atlantic coast earlier this month, more than 2.5 million people were told to evacuate in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.

Why Narcissists Are More Likely To Break The Rules

Why Narcissists Are More Likely To Break The RulesWhat drives professional sportspeople to break the rules of the game? And what makes them believe, or hope, that they won’t get caught? Or think that their actions will bring glory to them and their team?

What Determines Whether You're A Night Owl Or Early Bird?

What Determines Whether You're A Night Owl Or Early Bird?Sleep is critical for physical and mental health, and our quality of life. While 3% of the population are genetically programmed to function with less than six hours sleep regularly, the rest of us need around 7.5 hours a night. But what determines whether we like to go to bed early or late?

How Do Children Develop A Sense Of Self?

How Do Children Develop A Sense Of Self?From the moment they are born, babies are exposed to information that can teach them about who they are. By touching their own face and body, or by kicking and grabbing things, they start to enjoy the influence of their actions on the world.

Do People With Autism Make More Logical Decisions?

autism 10 17Decisions are based on the way choices are framed. This is because people use emotion when making decisions, leading to some options feeling more desirable than others.

Getting Comfortable in Your Own Skin

Getting Comfortable in Your Own SkinThe best way to move into authenticity with ease is to roll up your sleeves and get comfortable in your own skin. No one even has to be around for this to start, it’s just about you being comfortable with yourself.

How Not To Be A Moral Hypocrite

Quick to point fingers? Gary PerkinA few years ago, I discovered that a friend was cheating on their partner. This immediately blackened my perception of my friend. Then I remembered that I had done something quite similar some years earlier.

Empathy: A Powerful Tool That Can Be Overwhelming & Confusing

Empathy: A Powerful Tool That Can Be Overwhelming & ConfusingWithout knowledge of what’s happening, sensitive individuals may grow up coping in unsatisfying ways. But this doesn’t have to be the case. For someone who is highly empathic, refining and modulating this deep way of knowing involves several keys...

Step Aside and Experience a Miracle in the Making

Step Aside and Experience  a Miracle in the MakingI began the practice of “stepping aside” only after years of step­ping into business that was clearly not my own. I had mistak­enly assumed that helping others make their decisions was an important calling. It showed them I cared. It was my way of remaining important to them. Or so I thought . . .

Slaying The Dragons That Are Within & Without

Slaying The Dragons That Are Within & WithoutSmall but insidious dragons lurk to intercept us on our spiritual journey through the land of ecstasies and voids. One of these is the infamous sheltering dragon.

The Difficulty of Forgiveness: Seeing Through Their Eyes

The Difficulty of Forgiveness: Seeing Through Their EyesMost people will categorically agree that one of the most difficult emotions to express is forgiveness. More lives have been destroyed by bitterness and the inability to forgive than perhaps any other negative emotion. Even the most minuscule issues that we refuse to let go of can poison...

How Monkeys Make Friends And Influence Each Other

How Monkeys Make Friends And Influence Each OtherFor us humans, getting involved in an aggressive conflict can be costly, not only because of the risk of injury and stress, but also because it can damage precious social relationships between friends – and the same goes for monkeys and apes.

What Role Does The Brain Play In Shaping Our Mood?

The autobiographic memory network switches on when someone is preoccupied by thoughts concerning themselves. Mitya Ku/Flickr, CC BYSomebody woke up on the wrong side of bed this morning.” You know that comment; the one that rarely makes you feel any more gracious towards the world (or the person saying it). At other times you might feel particularly gracious and sunny, for no reason at all.

How Social Media Can Damage Body Image

How Social Media Can Damage Body ImageSocial media is a wonderful way to connect with others, share experiences and opinions and express ideas. But it can have a dark side for body image, which requires a critical and thoughtful approach to counteract.

How Much Energy Do You Put Into Avoiding Being Assaulted?

How Much Energy Do You Put Into Avoiding Being Assaulted?A recent article offering men advice about how to proposition a woman wearing headphones – encouraging them to block her path to prevent her from ignoring them – rightfully provoked a major backlash.

Peace Is Your Responsibility: Are You Ready To Be Peace?

Peace Is Your Responsibility: Are You Ready To Be Peace?To really know about peace is to embody the truth that you and peace are one. But since so many aren’t aware of what they truly are, how can they possibly know lasting peace? This lack of awareness is why, despite the efforts of activists, seekers, and indeed so many in the world who desire peace, an enduring peace escapes us.

How Do I Know If I Drink Too Much?

How Do I Know If I Drink Too Much?While alcohol is a legal and common way many societies stimulate social interaction, when consumed at high levels over long periods it can undermine physical health and cause cancers and other disease.

Sleep Paralysis Is a Wide-Awake Brain and a Snoozing Body

Sleep Paralysis Is a Wide-Awake Brain and a Snoozing BodyYour eyes begin to open after a good night of sleep, but something feels weird. You try to rub the tiredness out of your face but can’t lift your arms. In a panic you try to take a deep breath but can’t draw air.

Handle With Care Words That Insult, Offend And Wound

Handle With Care Words That Insult, Offend And WoundOur linguistic and legal obsession with “insult” and “offence” is nothing new. In 1832, Sydney resident William McLoughlin was given 50 lashes for using the word “damned” against his master.

What Sad Songs Say To Some People, But Not Others

What Sad Songs Say To Some People, But Not OthersTear-jerkers such as Adele’s Someone Like You frequently top the charts these days, while gloomy classical compositions like Mozart’s Requiem have moved people for centuries. Both portray and bring about a strong sense of loss and sadness.

A Sober Crowd Makes Drinking Seem More Risky

A Sober Crowd Makes Drinking Seem More RiskyPeople were more likely to underestimate their own level of drinking, drunkenness, and the associated risks when surrounded by other drunk people, a new study shows. Those people also felt more at risk when surrounded by people who were more sober.

How To Change Your "Not Enough" Thinking

How To Change Your "Not Enough" ThinkingDo you feel like you're never enough? That there's never enough time? Money? Friends? Great opportunities? Recognition?  Do you believe if you had or did something else -- got married, earned more, looked more beautiful, danced better, or had more time -- you'd finally relax and feel okay? Do you believe more is better? Are you rarely satisfied?

Freedom from the Grip of Anger

Freedom from the Grip of AngerIf there is one emotion that seems to get out of control, it is anger. We express it, and then we regret it. Repressing anger does no good. It just builds up, and then we feel as if we have a bomb that’s about to explode. Can we put unwanted anger to rest?

8 Easy Steps To Stop Procrastinating

(mararie/flickr)It’s 10:00 at night, and you have a paper due tomorrow morning. You’ve been trying to come up with a good idea all afternoon, but you became distracted by your friends’ Tumblr posts.

Why Guilt Can Be Good For You

Why Guilt Can Be Good For YouWe 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.

What If I Wasn't Afraid?

What If I Wasn't Afraid?How many times have we stopped ourselves from doing something we really really wanted to do, but were afraid to? If you think back, imagine where the road would have taken you had you had the courage to do what your heart wanted you to do, or not do... or to say, or not say.

What To Do With Those "Something to Worry About" Thoughts

The "Something to Worry About" Thoughts
Sometimes the thoughts bothering us are not based on anything concrete, like health or career problems. But they’re in our mind anyway, and it’s unsettling us enough to make us feel agitated or irritated, and maybe even angered by it...

Have A Tough Time Sleeping?

Have A Tough Time Sleeping?You work late and finally crawl into bed absolutely wiped out. But you can’t fall asleep because your mind is still racing. Oooo! You finally do fall asleep! But then you wake up in the middle of the night. You can’t go back to sleep, so you get up and...

Where Terrorism Ends: Starting From the Inside Out

Where Terrorism Ends: Starting From the Inside OutWhen you use fear, guilt, threat, or punishment to control someone who bothers you, you add to the dark mess. Teaching others that they are guilty, small, stupid, or owing are forms of psychological terrorism. When you release others, you release yourself.

Cannabis Makes You Lazy Only In The Short Term

Cannabis Makes You Lazy Only In The Short TermAfroman’s 2001 hit Because I Got High tells a potentially important story: smoking cannabis makes you lazy and demotivated. In fact, the fable of the lazy stoner has been around for decades. But is there good evidence in support of it?

Why Other People's Clothing Has Long Made Us Uneasy

Why Other People's Clothing Has Long Made Us UneasyPictures of Nigella Lawson wearing a burkini on Bondi Beach and nuns paddling on a French beach in their religious garb show how selective and ridiculous the burkini law is.

How Guilt Is A Wonderful Teacher

How Guilt Is A Wonderful TeacherI remember once believing that guilt was a wasted emotion. Like all emotions, there is a place for guilt. A centered spiritual being, one who has moved past limiting beliefs, will feel guilty doing something that goes against who she is or wants to be.

How Consciousness Can Heal Our Emotions

How Consciousness Can Heal Our EmotionsWe develop the capacity to experience happiness, ecstasy, and tranquility to the degree to which we can free ourselves from the residue of our emotional body.

How Advertisers Seduce Our Subconscious

How Advertisers Seduce Our SubconsciousIn 1957 Vance Packard’s book The Hidden Persuaders shocked the world by revealing that messages exposed subliminally, below our level of perception, were able to increase sales of ice cream and Coke.

We Can All Be A Little Radicalized

We Can All Be A Little Radicalized

The conviction of radical Islamist preacher Anjem Choudary for swearing allegiance to Islamic State shows that those breaking the law by inviting support for a terrorist organisation can and will be prosecuted.

Can We Stop Living the Never Enough! Story?

You Are Enough! We Are Enough!We are currently living in what I call the Never Enough Story, a cultural myth characterized by ideas of separation, unworthiness, and scarcity. It is a culture that indoctrinates each and every one of us to the idea that we are separate, on our own, and there is never enough to go around. 

Cultivating New Behaviors: You've Got A Problem? So What!

Cultivating New Behaviors: You've Got A Problem? So What!Personal prob­lems are only as big and as real as we make them. In fact, they only exist if we allow our egos to create them and then we feed them through our incessant attention. Take a look at the following suggestions for changing how you look at the “imagined problems” in your life.

Let’s Talk about Guilt

Let’s Talk about GuiltGuilt is a difficult burden to carry around with you. And guilt perpet­uates what you are guilty about; how does it do that?  Guilt is a very negative, destructive energy. It is different from remorse, the feeling we get when we know we have done something wrong and we’re dreadfully sorry. In the case of remorse...

Why Getting The Giggles Is So Contagious

Laughter: works better in company. CREATISTAIt is 25 years since cricket commentators Brian Johnston and Jonathan Agnew famously got the uncontrollable giggles on live radio, while reporting on that day’s Test Match between England and the West Indies.

What Are The Right Words In A Text That Can Calm A Crisis?

What Are The Right Words In A Text That Can Calm A Crisis?Crisis hotlines have been around for years, but until recently there’s been very little data on which counseling strategies seemed most effective at helping people cope. The recent emergence of text-based crisis help lines is changing that.

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FROM THE EDITORS

The Day Of Reckoning Has Come For The GOP
by Robert Jennings, InnerSelf.com
The Republican party is no longer a pro-America political party. It is an illegitimate pseudo-political party full of radicals and reactionaries whose stated goal is to disrupt, destabilize, and…
Why Donald Trump Could Be History's Biggest Loser
by Robert Jennings, InnerSelf.com
Updated July 2, 20020 - This whole coronavirus pandemic is costing a fortune, maybe 2 or 3 or 4 fortunes, all of unknown size. Oh yeah, and, hundreds of thousands, maybe a million, of people will die…
Blue-Eyes vs Brown Eyes: How Racism is Taught
by Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf
In this 1992 Oprah Show episode, award-winning anti-racism activist and educator Jane Elliott taught the audience a tough lesson about racism by demonstrating just how easy it is to learn prejudice.
A Change Is Gonna Come...
by Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf
(May 30, 2020) As I watch the news on the events in Philadephia and other cities in the country, my heart aches for what is transpiring. I know that this is part of the greater change that is taking…
A Song Can Uplift the Heart and Soul
by Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf
I have several ways that I use to clear the darkness from my mind when I find it has crept in. One is gardening, or spending time in nature. The other is silence. Another way is reading. And one that…