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World of Psychology


Aging

A Deeper Dive: How Vulnerable Can a Therapist Be?

For as long as I can remember, “Peeling off the layers to reveal the real” has been my credo. In a dream, the words “Bare Boldly,” echoed through my sleeping but ever so active brain.” When messages come through that insistently, they can’t be ignored. My inner and outer work as a hybrid therapist-journalist prepare me to take this on every day. When that happens, I question if I am too self-revealing.
Friends

The Value of Pushback in Friendship

I do not really know anyone who would say they like the feeling of being challenged or criticized. But the reality is we often gain more from honest relationships and constructive criticism that will tell us the truth, even when it hurts.

A friend that always agrees with you, never questions your motives or decisions, or praises you for even the most basic expectation of behavior, is not really a friend. That is called an enabler. 
Depression

What You Need to Know About Suicidal Behavior

The number one thing I’ve learned in my more than 20 years of experience in the mental health space is that there is always more to be learned. Suicidal behavior and prevention are complex. Just as there is not one single thing leading to suicidal behaviors, there is also not one single thing that will prevent them from occurring. In order to provide exceptional care and support to individuals with lived experience, friends, family members and co-workers, we must continue to learn about mental health.
Celebrities

Why Celebrity Narratives Can Be Dangerous for Your Mental Health

Everyone loves a good story. People expectantly gather around a story-teller at a party, listening intently to the narrative they weave. A really good story can even make a person's day.

Entire companies have been built by the telling of a good story. Just look at TED talks, which gained their power and following from storytelling.

Are stories and personal narratives always a change agent for good? Or can they also be used for less altruistic purposes? And what happens when you add the multiplying power of celebrity and influencers into the mix of a good narrative?

General

Podcast: Hugging Strangers to Improve Mental Health


Touch is a powerful thing. From the time we’re born, and throughout our lives, humans need touch to thrive and develop properly. Sadly, many people in our culture experience a profound lack of caring and respectful platonic touch. Today’s guest, Rev. Edie Weinstein, has a remedy for this. She is the founder of Hug Mobsters Armed With Love, which offers FREE HUGS events for the public.
Anxiety and Panic

Treating Social Anxiety Disorder with Mindfulness

It’s completely normal to feel anxious in social situations. Be it giving a speech or talking on the phone, social anxiety affects a surprisingly large percentage of the population. However, when one experiences considerable distress and an impaired ability to function in parts of their daily life, it is likely they will be diagnosed as social anxiety disorder.1
Mental Health and Wellness

Three Evidence-Based Ways to Feel Better During Winter 

With Christmas behind us and the winter months stretching out ahead, for many people this part of the year can feel particularly miserable -- and most especially if they suffer with Seasonal Affective Disorder. While it’s crucial to head to the doctor if you are finding it difficult to cope, there are evidence-backed self-help methods to boost our mood during winter, which can help us to tackle the January blues and no longer feel as if life is on hold until Spring. 
Brain and Behavior

GeneSight Test: No Significant Results? Try a Different Research Measure

As I've discussed previously, drug-gene testing, also referred to as pharmacogenomics or pharmacogenetics, doesn't really yet work for psychiatric drugs and disorders. People are buying a promise that's not backed up by the research.

Recently, one company in this space published a followup study to a large outpatient study of patients with clinical depression. Since the first study did not show any statistical significance in the study's primary outcome measure, the company decided to simply re-crunch the data with another measure. Voila! Significance found.

Aging

A Midlife Crisis or a Midlife Unraveling? 

The past few years I have become increasingly aware that I should feel free and brave by now with my continuous journey of self-discovery and openness to dive deep into my story and find out what makes me who I am. Four years ago, I boldly took off my armor temporarily and stood naked, so to speak, for the first time in many years, as I came out of the mental health closet. Maybe, it was really for the first time ever.