World of Psychology

Phobias: Not Just Fear

I was browsing some of my regular news sites and came across an article in 's Living section about phobias. (It was actually a syndicated article from a New York Times company, go figure.)

In the piece, which actually gets to some good suggestions at...
Brain and Behavior

Can Sex Be a Primer for Love?

According to research published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin in August, the answer is "Yes," sexual cues can directly influence a person's relationship-oriented behaviors.

The researchers conducted a number of experiments to try and determine whether an association exists between erotic stimuli (sexually explicit words and pictures) and attributes that might increase a person's tendency to want to be in a close relationship with another person.

Participants were divided into four groups -- two were shown sexual photos,...
Brain and Behavior

Is Sexual Addiction Real?

When a new TV seasons starts up and one of the hit shows is about sex addiction, suddenly everyone is focused on sexual addiction. "Look, a new disorder!" "Look, David Duchovny actually has it!" Like most other compulsive behavioral conditions, sexual addiction is not recognized as a "real" disorder by the psychiatric diagnostic book, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (the DSM).

However, unlike most other behavioral compulsions, sexual addiction does have a fairly rich and long research...

Facebook Scams of Narcissists

Did you know that if you spend time at social network websites like Facebook you might be a narcissist?

Of course not everyone who uses Facebook is one. A recent study published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (Buffardi and Cambell, 2008) found how social networking web sites such as Facebook can attract narcissists. Here are some of the positive traits narcissists can exhibit:

Initially likable.
Perceived as leaders.
Perceived as exciting.
Perceived as entertaining.
The capability to obtain sexual partners.

Narcissists can give the illusion...

Vive la France!

I spent last week on vacation in the countryside known for some of the best wines in all the world, outside of Bordeaux, France. International travel is such an eye-opening and rich cultural experience, I encourage anyone to do it sooner rather than later in one's life, even if it's not for very long or very far. Every culture has something to offer each of us.

There are also so many stereotypes and generalizations that get blown away whenever you have...

Discriminating Against People with Mental Illness

You'd think that as people become more and more educated about the complex biological, social and psychological factors that go to make up mental illness, people would become more understanding and less stigmatizing. As we are on the cusp of having a nationwide ban from discriminating in mental healthcare reimbursements, you'd think government and ordinary people are getting the message.

Well, you would be wrong.

First, we learn from the Mental Health Blog that Nova Scotia almost began discriminating against drivers renewing their driver's...

Is the Research Any Good?

Want to be a better consumer of social science research? Here's a short crib sheet for determining the general legitimacy and generalizability of virtually any social science study. Keep in mind that this crib sheet is not going to be 100% accurate or relevant...