Our brains are wired to pay more attention to things that have previously brought us pleasure—a bias that may explain why it’s so hard to break bad habits or stick to New Year’s resolutions.
Problematic Internet Use is now considered to be a behavioral addiction with characteristics that are similar to substance use disorders. Individuals with PIU may have difficulty reducing their Internet use, may be preoccupied with the Internet
Along with just about every other aspect of real or imagined differences between the sexes, the idea that your biological sex will determine the sex of your brain – and so your behaviour, aptitudes and personality – has a long and ...
Sweet Sara. That’s what people always used to call me. It didn’t matter where I went in the world — whether it was to visit a cousin in the Midwest, have tea with a girlfriend in Bangkok, or read a piece of fan mail from someone I’d never met before. Everyone I knew at some point arrived at “Sweet Sara” as my nickname.
Why do we drink alcohol? And what would make us do less of it? The government has its own answers – on January 8, the chief medical officer for England, Dame Sally Davies, announced the new government alcohol guidelines. There is now no “safe” drinking level, and the recommended lower-risk maximum per week has been reduced to 14 units, for both men and women.
New Year’s resolutions are set with the best of intentions. But they notoriously fail to translate into lasting behavioural changes.
Humankind is fit only to be exterminated – that might sometimes seem like the only answer to our ever-growing population, environmental degradation and the human threat to biodiversity. But if you accept it’s impossible to reconcile this with any meaningful morality, we need a new approach to how we conduct ourselves.
It's obvious that the holiday season is upon us. The idea is to thrive and enjoy during this time rather than just survive. Give yourself two great gifts for the next weeks - a lack of stress and actually celebrating the true spirit of this time of year – joy, love, and peace.
As we get older our physical and mental abilities decline, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Research suggests that the way we live our lives - our diets, our exercise regimes - can have a big impact on how we age. And it’s not just about the things we do to age well, it’s also about the things we avoid.
Anyone with siblings knows they can differ from us in maddening ways. They share our parents and our family history, but their personalities can be so different. Birth order offers an intuitively appealing explanation for these perplexing differences.
The smell of cinnamon wafts through the air. My guard is down; resistance is futile. Like a zombie, I roll my luggage across the airport food court and stand in line to pay too much for what I don’t even want, a diet-killing Cinnabon.
Recent media reports have raised questions over the therapy undergone by several people making allegations of historical sexual abuse against prominent public figures. In particular, it has been suggested that certain forms of therapy run a high risk of unintentionally generating false memories of sexual abuse.
The best advice I’ve ever heard is what I will tell you right now: When something in your life goes wrong, look for the lesson that you can learn from this event. Somewhere there is energy that is trying to teach you something.
Can something as simple as watching movies—and empathizing with fictional characters—help generate more compassion and understanding in the real world?
The history of our species is brutal, tragic in the cruelty we have afflicted upon one another, upon other species, and upon Earth herself. Our situation has come to a critical stage. Are there some heretofore hidden processes in us that we could activate, some homeopathic remedies for our violence that could stimulate more empathy, connectedness, and love?
Do you regret choices you’ve made, opportunities you think you’ve lost, time you see as wasted? If you’re vigorously shaking your head up and down, please stop and listen a moment. You’re succumbing to self-condemnation. When we do, we cultivate a downward-spiraling sense of self-worth...
For many, the first sign of difficulties can be enough for them to become discouraged and stop doing what they intended, while others find the determination to discover another way to prevail. Rather than giving up, they look for the opportunity within the challenge—and it’s there, always.
No one does this conscious-living thing perfectly, so the idea isn’t to always be grounded in the present, but to be there as often as possible, certainly more often than not; know when you’re slipping out of it; and be able to bring yourself back as quickly as possible.
When children expect aggression from others, it may cause them to be overly aggressive themselves, a new study finds. While the pattern is more common in some cultures than others, a four-year longitudinal study involving 1,299 children and their parents finds it is true in 12 different cultural groups from nine countries around the globe.
Think of the last time you ate some chocolate. Did you feel you had to sneak it? Did you eat too much and regret it afterward? Did you hog down the lot of the precious morsels? And how did you feel after your escapade? Were you able to enjoy the chocolate fully? I certainly hope so!
A common experience: you are walking down the street and someone is walking in the opposite direction toward you. You see him but he does not see you. He is texting or looking at his cellphone. He is distracted, trying to do two things at the same time, walking and communicating.
We do not teach people how to fail in our education system. The purpose of exams is to get questions correct. The people who are rewarded in school are the ones who get the best grades, not the ones who take the biggest risks or the ones who learn from their mistakes.
It’s said that success has many fathers, while failure is an orphan. In the modern world of business, that’s not quite true. Increasingly, when things go wrong, CEOs depart, with failure’s paternity quickly ascribed to the boss in the big office.
Your brain does a lot when you are asleep. It’s when you consolidate memories and integrate the things you’ve learned during the day into your existing knowledge structure. We now have lots of evidence that while you are sleeping, specific memories can be reactivated and thus strengthened.
Imagine you just received a great bit of news at work – a promotion, pay rise, new car, an acceptance letter from the top journal in your field. If you are like me, you would probably like to open your door or pick up your phone and share your happiness with co-workers and friends. But research that colleagues and I have recently carried out suggested you should think twice.
The more committed we are to achieving a goal—catching a train, buying a movie ticket, getting groceries—the more likely we are to assume others have exactly the same objective. The new study by New York University psychology researcher Janet Ahn points to the types of assumptions we make about others’ behavior, which may have an impact on social interaction.
A simple experiment with a small group of college students suggests that punishments influence behavior more than rewards. In fact, punishments—in this case, losing money tokens—had a measured impact two to three times great than winning money. The results appear in the journal Cognition.
Life teaches us that we cannot be released from powerful, stressful emotions by resisting, ignoring, or repressing them – no matter how hard we try. In fact, life teaches us just the opposite. We learn from experience that resisting, repressing and ignoring unpleasant emotions just tend to make things worse.
I have been playing for around twelve years now, and I still take lessons. The best lessons I have are the ones in which I leave feeling like I don’t really know anything about playing at all. During those lessons, my teacher has identified yet another weakness in my playing. I have to learn new skills to overcome those weaknesses to get better.
“Deviant individuals can exist in almost every society, even in the most strict and ruthless ones such as Nazi Germany. These deviant group members serve as an opposition to the opinions of the majority and can also differ from the majority in their emotional experience.”
Billions of people enjoy music; many feel that they can’t live without it. Why? It’s a question that has puzzled scientists and philosophers for centuries. 2,400 years ago Aristotle wondered, “Why does music, being just sounds, remind us of the states of our soul?”
In order to change any of the beliefs that are holding you back from creating the life you want, it’s important to understand how they were formed and what got you to this point. For many years behavioral scientists have studied human infants to determine what their experience is and how they develop.
In the Book of Genesis we are told that “a deep sleep fell over Adam,” but nowhere in the Bible does it say that he woke up. We are all Adam, still immersed in the dream of limitation. We have become sleepwalkers, trudging through our days wondering who we are and why we are here.
“I will definitely give up smoking – that’s my New Year’s resolution,” she stated emphatically as she thumped her fist on the table to underline her determination. “All very well”, I thought, as I sat opposite her in my medical consulting room in October.
In 1993, Conari Press published a book called Random Acts of Kindness. This book started a movement of people looking for ways to be kind to complete strangers. It was not at all unusual to see a bumper sticker on the car in front of you that read, “Practice Random Acts of Kindness.”
I have tremendous patience with people. I can get occasionally frustrated, annoyed, or even angry, but ultimately my patience kicks back in. I simply refuse to give up on a living being. You too have enormous patience for something and the more you study what fosters your patience, the more you will...
Everything we do is a habit, in one form or another -- how we think, how we talk, how we react to criticism, which type of snack we instinctively reach for. Even when faced with a circumstance for the first time, we respond to it from habit...
The end of this year might be a good time to decide which stories you want to leave behind and which you would like to take into the new year and amplify. Some stories are worth telling and others are not worth telling. Some stories empower us and others disempower us...
To become a VIP member of Club Shouldsville, you must constantly suffer from the belief that one "should" and "should not" say and do certain things in relationships. And since reality almost never lives up to most people's expectations and ideas about how...
I encourage you to realize that the most powerful thing you can do in every moment is to choose joy. Make the shift into joy your greatest priority. When you choose joy, your joy is a flint that creates a spark that ignites the fire of unconditional love that subsequently...
Many of us have been holding back and storing unfelt emotions. What's the purpose? Unfortunately, the reason behind suppressed emotions is self-defeating. Holding back from "feeling your feelings" is usually how we try to protect ourselves from being hurt. However...
by Marie T. Russell.
This year for the first time, I have planted zucchini in my garden. At first I thought people had exaggerated... But now I have discovered something. You may check your garden in the afternoon and see some small...
Sometimes it seems that commitment is a four-letter word. It is a word that oftentimes brings up insecurity, doubt, and fear. What is the underlying fear to our committing ourselves to an action, project, or relationship? Is it...
It crept up unexpectedly, little by little, until it was a full blown "mood". My ego tells me "It all started after the conversation with that person who was angry... it's all their fault." "Wait a minute," my Higher Self interjects. "You chose to adopt that anger and carry it with you. No one forced you or 'made you' angry."
Judgment plays a big part in our lives, so much that we are not even aware most of the time that we are judging. If you didn't think that something was bad, it wouldn't upset you. If you didn't think that something was good, you wouldn't feel any loss when it was absent...
Have you ever noticed that when you are impatient, frazzled, and upset, things go worse, and when you are relaxed, patient, and trusting, things go better. Thinking and acting with faith changes the results you get. When you find yourself in a situation in which you seem to have no control, point your thoughts toward peace, and the universe responds.
I once worked for a rather abusive woman who constantly berated, belittled and badgered her employees -- me included. If any of us sought to stand up for ourselves, we were chastised and told in no uncertain terms that we were insecure whiners who should appreciate we had a job in the first place.
by Sylvia Browne. There was one passage [in the Dead Sea Scrolls] that struck me as reflecting our philosophy so much: "An edict went out amongst the Essenes [later the Gnostics] that stated, 'Stop holding on. Quit having the stubbornness of guilt.'" It really struck me how tenacious guilt is. Guilt is a killer -- no doubt about it.
by Jerry Minchinton. We can define manipulation as "getting people to do what you want without giving them something they value in return". How does manipulation work? When someone says to you, "If you don't help me clean my house I'm going to be mad at you," that person is attempting to manipulate you. He is not offering you anything...
by Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche. Generally speaking, all religions consider compassion to be important. Moreover, it is not just the religions of the world that consider compassion to be important. Ordinary, worldly people think so too. Generally, everyone feels compassion, but the compassion is flawed.
A good way to let go of unconscious beliefs and to see yourself more honestly is to examine the secrets you keep from others. Consider this: the fact that you have secrets is the same thing as affirming, "If people really knew me, they wouldn't accept me".
How many of you have felt stress, anger, resentment, and a range of other emotions when you felt that somebody had not given you what you thought they should have given you. Some of us have a deep-seated belief that...
We as humans, just like the wildflowers, must bend and flow to the demands placed upon us by our environment. The body's ability to maintain an inner balance in the face of changing conditions of our environment...
Guilt does what is necessary to maintain its power. Guilt gives you importance in a variety of ways. Say you have a friend who has a life full of challenges. You know she feels better after talking to you, even though you feel drained. Yet you feel you must continue these conversations. After all...
The world's favorite pastime is not football, soccer, or baseball but gossip. People love to gossip about one another. The next time you are at the check out line in your grocery store notice all the papers and magazines that thrive on gossip...
Without reversing our present attitudes towards ourselves and others, we cannot attain enlightenment. We might think, "Well, so what?" But at the same time we don't want to remain in our present condition, experiencing unhappiness and suffering. By considering all these points carefully, we will realize that making this switch in our attitudes is possible.
We all have a choice. We can submit to apathy and indifference or we can choose hope. This dialogue is about choosing hope and recognizing that we each have a responsibility to make a difference in the world.