Brain and Behavior

Living in a Bigger Story

Out beyond the shadows of our old thinking, a wholly different world appears. A world that delights in our explorations, our need to join with others. A world that welcomes and supports our endeavors. The world knows how to change and grow. ~ Margaret J. Wheatley & Myron Kellner-Rogers, A Simpler Way
We love epic stories, those invoking the heroic journey. We resonate and identify with larger-than-life characters, not simply because we are fascinated with their exploits, but because we are drawn to the archetypal qualities they represent. And that allows us to tap into the inner resources we can discover in our own inner treasure chest:
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Bipolar

New Zealanders’ Improving Perception of Mental Illness

I am a 63-year-old New Zealander. I’m happily married with two adult sons and two grandsons and work from home in the suburbs of Auckland as a freelance writer. I also suffer from bipolar disorder, which I believe I manage very well. Over the years since I first became ill as a teenager, I have seen huge improvements in the public perception of mental illness, but believe we still have a way to go.

I was about 10 or 11 years old when my father first was admitted to a psychiatric hospital for treatment. I can remember being very confused and asking my teacher if my dad had gone mad. This was back in the '60s when no one really discussed mental illness. If it was talked about, it was in hushed tones. Sufferers were described as being “nervy” or having “bad nerves.”

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Celebrities

Glenn Close Opens Up About Her Depression

When Jessie and Glenn Close founded their mental illness nonprofit, Bring Change 2 Mind in 2010, all of the focus was on Jessie's battle with bipolar disorder. Glenn was there to lend her name and support to the effort, but I'm not sure anyone imagined she too suffered. Silently.

But, according to a new article in Mashable earlier this week, Glenn was first diagnosed with depression in 2008. Which makes her efforts to help launch Bring Change 2 Mind all the more laudable.

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Brain and Behavior

Mindfulness: Essential for Everyone

What do Oprah, LeBron James, Derek Jeter, Kobe Bryant, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ariana Huffington, Hugh Jackman and Phil Jackson have in common? They are all famous and rich? Sure, but a core component of their journey to success is their regular practice of mindfulness.

What makes a life successful? What are its component parts? There is birth, school, college, drugs, alcohol, money, vacations, sex, children, aging, grandchildren, death, and yet there is no recipe for combining all of these to assure a happy life. Deciding that you can know how you will live by defining the number of children you will have, exactly where and when you will vacation, how much money you will make, and what your profession will be is as futile as assuming that you will know how you will feel after eating a slice of orange cake simply by knowing the ingredients that went into the cake.

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Addiction

Psychology Around the Net: October 17, 2015


Happy Saturday, Psych Central readers!

This week's Psychology Around the Net brings you the latest on therapy and your sex life, the effects of alcohol use on the economy, what exactly counts as creepy behavior, and more.

Enjoy!

The Psychology of Sex: How Therapy Can Save Your Sex Life: Sometimes, physical conditions such as low testosterone and diabetes can lead to intimacy and sex problems; other times, mental health help such as talk therapy might be just what a couple needs to strengthen their relationship and boost their sex life.

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Celebrities

Learning Resilience from Elite Athletes

Did you ever see young athletes who had great potential? They seemed to have all the gifts. You knew they were going to excel, maybe turn professional -- they were that good. But later, to your surprise, you learned they never realized their potential. They were good, but they never made it to the next level.

You may have dismissed it as "bad luck" or bad coaching. Often there is something else missing: an intangible factor. I call it "FACTOR R," for resilience.

Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity. In athletics, adversity usually comes in the form of defeat, failure, injury, or even extreme situational stress and pressure.

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Bipolar

Psychology Around the Net: October 10, 2015


Today is World Mental Health Day 2015, and our bloggers here at Psych Central have worked tirelessly to bring you some of the most thought-provoking, enlightening mental health- and psychology-related posts around.

It's not just our job; it's our passion.

Fortunately, educating the world about mental health isn't just our passion, and today's Psychology Around the Net brings you tons of informational pieces on topics such as pop star Demi Lovato's mental health campaign, how some television shows miss the mark with mental illness, the British royals' active role in de-stigmatizing mental illness, and more.

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Celebrities

5 Surprising Things We Can Learn About Psychotherapy from Howard Stern

I like psychotherapy. I also like Howard Stern. Although his radio show is a shell of what it used to be -- airing only 3 days a week and irregularly at that -- Stern remains a self-aggrandizing enigma.

On one hand, he's infamous for his rowdy humor, endless fascination with his bowel movements, and juvenile bits, especially earlier in his career. But on the other, as he's grown older (he's now 61), he's also matured and slowed down a bit. He has been a regular user of transcendental meditation (TM), long before mindfulness became the latest fad. And he's also been a loyal psychotherapy-goer for decades, attending sessions a mere three times a week (from a high of four).

But whenever Stern talks about psychotherapy on his radio show, I tense up. Because while well-meaning, he inevitably says things about psychotherapy that are probably only true in his world... but not for the rest of us.

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Anxiety and Panic

Psychology Around the Net: September 19, 2015


Happy Saturday, Psych Central readers!

Although the official start of fall is rapidly approaching, we still have a few warm-weather days ahead of us. Before venturing out to enjoy yours, take a look at some of the hottest psychology-related topics we've gathered for you today!

Enjoy!

Autumn Anxiety Is Real, and Treatable: Is your anxiety at an all-time high during the first few weeks of autumn? Try these five tips to keep it in check.

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