Personality Articles

Why Are We Drawn to Horror Films?

Saturday, January 4th, 2014

Why Are We Drawn to Horror Films?My relationship with horror films is one massive contradiction. On the one hand, I can’t peel my eyes away from the screen. On the other hand, I know that I’m surely going to be spooked in the aftermath (the more paranormal content, the creepier it is). And yet, I’m drawn to frightening movies anyway, in dark rooms and late at night. (Go big or go home, right?)

“Lauren, why do you do that to yourself?” family members ask, after it’s apparent that my vivid, disturbing dreams are probably a byproduct of the storylines I watched before sleep: John Cusack spends the night in a haunted hotel room and loses his mind. He escapes the room, physically, but does he ever really leave? The spirit of a murder victim lingers around the Yankee Peddler Inn — she’s seeking vengeance. Religion turns dark and exorcisms occur. Ouija boards just encompass freakiness.

Why are we so drawn to things that scare us?

Back to Work Blues: Protecting Yourself from Energy Vampires

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

Back to Work Blues: Protecting Yourself from Energy VampiresHolidays from work can elicit relief and dread in equal measure when you know you’ll be going back to a co-worker who seems to suck the air right out of the room and drains you dry — in other words, an “energy vampire.”

Working with difficult people for too long can lead to burnout — a state of emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged exposure to stress. It saps your energy to the extent that you can lose your interest and motivation on the job and end up feeling increasingly cynical and resentful. It can even lead to someone developing serious mental health and medical conditions such as depression, anxiety, problem drinking, digestive issues, chronic fatigue syndrome, immune system disorders, obesity and heart disease.

So what are energy vampires and what can you do to help prevent them from ruining your work day?

You Just Have to Believe: Audacious Ambition

Sunday, December 22nd, 2013

You Just Have to Believe: Audacious AmbitionNapoleon Hill wrote in every chapter of The Law of Success, “you can do it if you believe you can.” Henry Ford famously said, “If you think you can or if you think you can’t — you’re right.” Now new psychological research shows that, yes, they were right.

Researchers Timothy Judge and John Kammeyer-Mueller have shown that people who believe they can accomplish the goals they set are more likely to accomplish them. This is because if you believe you can accomplish your goal, you are more likely to put in the energy and effort required to attain it.

That may have been what Napoleon Hill was thinking when he said “you have to believe to achieve.”

Great Quotes: 8 Reasons to Be Yourself

Sunday, December 15th, 2013

8 Reasons to Be YourselfSome of my favorite quotes on why it’s best to be yourself …

Be who you are and say what you feel,
because those who mind don’t matter
and those who matter don’t mind.
~ Dr. Seuss

25 Things I Learned the Year I Turned 25

Friday, December 13th, 2013

25 Things I Learned the Year I Turned 25With 2014 looming around the corner, I decided to reflect upon the past year and what I’ve learned.

Turning 25 was a big one for me, and with it came a lot of personal growth and learning experiences. I would like to share them with you and I encourage you to do the same. It allows you to pause and note any changes, progress, setbacks, and lessons you’ve experienced so far.

So here it goes — 25 things I learned the year I turned 25.

How to Spot a Psychopath

Friday, December 6th, 2013

How to Spot a PsychopathI love finding–or inventing–ways to categorize people. I agree with philosopher Isaiah Berlin, who observed, “Every classification throws light on something.”

I’ve devised several of these, and of the ones I’ve come up with myself, my favorites are the Abstainer/Moderator distinction and the four Rubin Tendencies.

Because of this interest, I was intrigued to come across the Psychopathic Personality Inventory, a personality test for traits  associated with psychopathy (link to actual quiz below).

I think that we can all agree that one thing that does not contribute to a happy life is a relationship with a psychopath. But what traits are associated with psychopaths?

The Magic & Benefits of Emotional Attunement

Monday, November 25th, 2013

asian couple happy googleRecently I was out to dinner with some friends. The restaurant was packed, and clearly the wait staff was missing a person or two. Our server was taking care of a huge section of the restaurant and was quite frazzled. His stress came across as frustration.

“What can I get for you?” he said in a rushed, distracted, agitated tone which communicated that he was viewing our party as an imposition at the moment.

I felt immediately a bit put-off. But then I looked around, noticed his situation, and felt a wave of empathy for this young man who was in over his head.

How to Get a Friend to See a Therapist

Saturday, November 16th, 2013

How to Get a Friend to See a TherapistYou probably regularly come across people who need professional help. They may be in the midst of a crisis, an important relationship isn’t working, they are emotionally unstable or their behavior is erratic. When drugs or alcohol are involved, especially around children, then it’s critical to take action.

However, it’s not easy to say to someone “I think you should see a therapist.”

It may offend them, shame them or disrupt your relationship. Your friend may hear: “You think there’s something wrong with me” and get angry, defensive or vehemently deny there’s a problem.

Rarely does a direct approach work in these circumstances.

Living with & Loving Someone with Borderline Personality Disorder

Friday, November 15th, 2013

Living with & Loving Someone with Borderline Personality DisorderAnger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.
~Mark Twain

We are a psychologically sophisticated society. Emotional difficulties are now shared openly — not only by celebrities but by your average person. It’s not unusual for people to tell friends that they have an anxiety disorder, anger management problem, depression, panic attacks, phobias, eating disorder, substance abuse problem, OCD or ADD.

Yet, there is a widespread psychological disorder that most people know little or nothing about. Why? Because its symptoms are largely interpersonal, causing many to view it as a relationship issue, not a mental health one. Also, people shy away from the term because of its unflattering name: Borderline Personality Disorder.

How to Avoid Being Drained by Energy Vampires

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

How to Avoid Being Drained by Energy VampiresHave you ever had the experience of having the life sucked out of you by spending time with a particular person?

I’m talking about feeling exhausted, bored, irritated, stressed, anxious, threatened, overwhelmed or depressed after just a few moments in that person’s company.

There may have been times where you felt guilty for having negative thoughts about that person — which made you feel even worse. You may even have thought there was something wrong with you, such as feeling a headache coming on or stressing over a work deadline. Either way, you didn’t understand why you felt so out of sorts.

If that describes a familiar experience, chances are you have been in the company of an energy vampire.

Unearthing & Ridding Yourself of Toxic Shame

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

Unearthing & Ridding Yourself of Toxic ShameShame is inexorably tied to the question that many of us will eventually ask ourselves: “Are we a human doing or a human being?”

In other words, is our value and appreciation for and about ourselves determined by what we do (and how it affects others) or just by who we are?

Human doers live their lives chasing the proverbial carrot, which is unattainable. Because core shame is maintained from the inside, no amount of “carrots” will ever relieve a person of it. It is simply impossible to reach a goal that is neither possible nor realistic.

Free Webinar: The Heart of Self-Acceptance

Monday, November 11th, 2013

Free Webinar: The Heart of Self-Acceptance

Join Francine Shapiro, Noah Rubinstein and Mike Bundrant for this special, one-hour event, The Heart of Self-Acceptance. During this live webinar, each speaker will discuss how to gain greater self-acceptance as well as fundamental obstacles that get in the way.

This free webinar will be hosted on Monday, Nov. 18 @ 7:00 PM EST. Registration is free, but space is limited.

Do you need to learn to accept yourself? You will leave this presentation with clear ideas that you can act upon immediately to improve your self-worth.

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