World of Psychology


Music: Insights on Listening to Improve Your Performance at Work

Music plays an important role in our life. It influences our emotions, eases stress and tension, and has therapeutic value. For example, listening to music before a medical procedure, such as a colonoscopy, reduces anxiety. 

One of the questions people often ask is, "How does music influence our performance?" To answer this question, we have to distinguish between listening to music prior to work or when we take a break, and listening to music while we are working, as background music.

How to Tell if It’s Time to Cut Your Losses: 6 Signs  

Should I stay or should I go? When we choose one path, we’re forced to surrender the other and either contend with loss and other repercussions of leaving, or forfeit a new opportunity and what might have been. Making a good choice involves predicting how the future will play out. To do this in an informed way requires knowing ourselves and having the perspective to realistically reflect on our current context, our future self and what matters most to us.

6 Ways to Self-Soothe When Starved for Touch

“I can’t stop crying.”

“I didn’t get my stimulus check and I have no idea how I’m going to pay my rent this month.”

“My uncle died, and I can’t go to the funeral.”

Every day, my social media feed fills with messages like these. People are anxious, immunocompromised, depressed, broke, lonely, and afraid.

If ever there was a time for a hug, this is it.

Children and Teens

Purposeful Parenting the Infant or Toddler

Purposeful parenting can begin even before a child is born. It can even begin before pregnancy. It is recommended that a woman who plans to become pregnant begin taking prenatal vitamins at least a month prior to conception, if possible. This ensures the proper vitamin balance for optimal development and decreases the likelihood of developmental defects occurring such as spina bifida.  
Memory and Perception

Lessons in Self-Talk

Self-talk is a constant stream of conversation running along inside of our heads -- it is happening whether we are aware of it or not. Should I call her? Should I eat another doughnut? It can be positive or negative, motivational or instructional. It can be empowering, and it can be debilitating. 

All of our environments are filtered through ourselves -- we interpret the world and environments and people around us, and it is that interpretation which becomes the truth of our world. Self-talk influences how we see the world. We should take note.

Three Steps for Finding Purpose and Why It Matters

As I opened my front door on a recent May morning, I was greeted by the welcoming sight of two small, dark eyes and a tiny head. She was up above me, by the light on our porch, sitting in her nest, devotedly protecting and warming her eggs. I had seen a flurry of activity over the past month -- a scuttering of wings back and forth, day after day, as she built this nest, an architectural feat balancing on the tip of the lamp post.

Podcast: Psych Central Turns 25 This Year

It’s Psych Central’s 25th anniversary! In today’s show, we celebrate the Internet’s largest and oldest independent mental health site with founder Dr. John Grohol. Just a few years after the World Wide Web became public domain, Dr. Grohol was inspired to create an online resource for everyone -- a site where patients, clinicians and caregivers could come together to access and share valuable mental health and psychology information.

Ethics & Morality

Ridiculing the Experts Who Just Might Save Us: Why Is This Happening?

Years ago, when I was teaching a course on nonverbal communication, I read a research report on a topic relevant to that class. It had just been published. So that day, instead of starting with the lecture I had planned, I told the students all about the new study. 

It is a small thing, I know, but I was proud of myself. I thought the students would appreciate having access to the most up-to-date findings in the field.