Bipolar

Touched with Fire: A Film about Bipolar & Artistic Genius

My name is Paul Dalio. I’m a filmmaker, husband of my NYU film school classmate, father of two children, and bipolar. Of these labels, the one I'm certain stands out in your mind is bipolar -- and not in a good way. That’s no fault of your own, since you probably don’t know much about it, other than what you’ve heard.

So how do I deal with this label? What other label do I have to choose from that’s not a disorder, disease, illness, or defect in my humanity? I remember when I received the label at age 24. All every medical book had to offer was that if I stayed on these meds, which made me feel no emotion, I could live a "reasonably normal life.” I didn’t know exactly what that meant, but I was pretty sure it sounded like "just get by."
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Creativity

New Study Connects Distraction to Creative Genius

We knew it.

It seems as if everyone you know does some of their best work while sitting in their local coffee shop, but you don't even bother bringing your laptop when you're killing time at Starbucks. You know that every customer order shouted out or every whirl of the espresso maker will derail you from whatever project you attempt to work on. You've tried to block it all out but have failed every time.

But there's good news if this always happens to you.

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Creativity

How to Find Your Flow

Creativity should be an essential requirement for everyone’s life. We all need a few hours here and there where it’s possible to lose track of time because we are so engrossed in the activity we’re doing.

I think it’s safe to say that everyone has experienced flow at some point in their lives. Whether it’s baking, writing, painting, playing music or drawing there seems to be at least some form of flow for nearly everyone. Some people even lose themselves in busywork. Regardless, we all know what it’s like to (thankfully) lose our train of thought and become so engrossed in something that you could spend hours doing it simply for the joy of it.
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Anxiety and Panic

How to Use a Journal for Better Emotional Health

According to the Anxiety Disorders Association of Canada, one in every four Canadians will develop at least one anxiety disorder in his or her lifetime. The pressures associated with our fast-paced society can take their toll on the best of us. Repeated exposure to moderate levels of stress can lead to the development of any anxiety-related disorder, such as panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder, as well as other psychological and physical ailments.

Most advertisements would have you believe that medication such as antidepressants are the only way to deal with anxiety. Medication does have its merit for certain conditions such as agoraphobia. Before the problem gets out of hand, however, there are simple ways to better manage your emotions and increase your psychological health.

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Anxiety and Panic

How to Get Out of a Work Rut or Career Slump


Have you ever had a day when things felt off? Maybe you continually lost focus, had an utter lack of motivation, or simply couldn’t rally to get anything done. We’ve all had unproductive days here and there, but occasionally, these slumps can span days, weeks, or even months.

A single bad day is one thing, but a lingering work rut can be detrimental to your happiness, well-being, and career. When you’re in a slump, you don’t produce your best work and may become disengaged from the tasks that used to excite you.
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Books

5 Books Guaranteed to Unlock Your Creative Genius



Why does it seem like some people can effortlessly “follow their passions”, while others can’t? What’s the secret of successful entrepreneurs and creatives who live out their dreams of dedicating their careers to inspiring, meaningful work? Why do the rest of us feel stuck in an unfulfilling funk?

Not everyone can follow their passion and make money from it. Not everyone can work on a personal project or business that lights you up and makes everyday feel like retirement. Or can you?

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Creativity

Storytelling Will Save the World

Captain’s log. Stardate January 2011. Where unfortunately many have gone before. I’m 26 years old and thinking about dying. Actually, I’m not being entirely truthful. I’m dangling halfway out the fourth floor window of my bedroom in New York City.

I don’t really want to die. I just want the emotional pain to stop, and I don’t know how to do that. Both my father and grandfather didn’t know how to make their own terrible personal pain stop, and now both are dead.
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Books

Teaching Kids to Identify and Cope with Their Emotions

It’s hard enough to identify, understand and cope with our emotions as adults. It takes practice. And often we get it wrong. That is, we can’t figure out what we’re really feeling. We ignore our feelings or pretend they don’t exist. Or we turn to unhealthy habits.

So it’s understandable that kids find feelings so confusing and overwhelming -- so much so they have meltdowns and tantrums. They kick. They scream. They sob. They stomp their feet.

Fortunately, parents can help. You can help your child tune into what they’re actually feeling and find healthy ways to cope with those feelings. It’s a skill that all kids need and benefit from greatly (as do parents!).
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Aging

Let Your Childhood Dreams Help You Live an Intentional Life


Chances are, you were on to something about yourself then.

Do you remember taking a careers class when you were a kid? You know, the class that got you thinking about your future employment?

I remember it. It was way back in 9th grade at Penndale Junior High.

I remember wanting to be a commercial artist back then. I was fascinated by typography and calligraphy, and, at the time, that was the only thing I could think of that would bring me happiness and capitalize on those interests.
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Creativity

The Positive Perspective: Replacing ‘Despite’ with ‘Because’

People often ask me, “How do you do your research?”

I’m a kind of street scientist. I don’t have a lab full of undergrads eating marshmallows to study; I rely on my own observations.

Really, I feel more like Samuel Johnson or William Hazlitt or George Orwell, in the way that I analyze human nature. I love reading the science, and I think about the science all the time, but in the end, I pay the most attention to what I see around me. And what I read -- not just science, but memoirs, biographies, novels.
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Anxiety and Panic

Don’t Let Your Creative Mind Fuel Your Social Anxiety

Many sufferers of social anxiety are highly sensitive, introspective individuals who simply fall into the mindtrap of extreme self-consciousness in unfamiliar social situations. Self-consciousness is essentially a fear-driven derivative of introspection, the ability to examine one’s own self.

Research also has shown that people who score high in traits of neuroticism, including anxiety, fear and worry, tend to have extremely active imaginations. In other words, the worrywarts and overthinkers of the world simply are using their creative minds to imagine the worst-case scenarios instead of the best. 

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