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Psychology Around the Net: January 20, 2018

Happy Saturday, sweet readers!

So, you’ve heard of mental health days, right? Well, I’m taking a mental health weekend. Earlier this week, I realized I was headed toward a weekend with no plans, no leftover work, and no obligations of any sort.

“Hmm…what am I going to do?” was all-too-easy to answer. “NOTHING!”

Well, I’ll be doing some reading, maybe work on a story, probably continue on with my second binge of Peaky Blinders — but the point is, I have a weekend of absolutely no personal or professional obligations and when I realized that, I also realized it’d been way too long since the last one. I need it.

Now, on with the latest in getting better sleep, how stand-up comedy can boost confidence, why some people think “toxic masculinity” is to blame for mass shootings, and more.

Do You Struggle to Nod Off? Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology Reveals His Top 5 Tips for Restless Sleepers: Sleep deprivation is linked to both mental health and physical health problems. Sleeplessness can cause depression, strokes, heart attacks, and diabetes. Many of us know some of the common ways to improve sleep — such as avoiding alcohol and caffeine — but there are other lesser-known ways like getting out of bed if you can’t fall asleep (what?!). Professor Matthew Walker of the University of California Berkeley explains his tips for people with sleep problems.

Empower Teen Girls by Teaching Them Stand-Up Comedy: New York-based startup Gold Comedy does more than coach teen girls the ins and outs of stand-up comedy. It also helps them build the confidence and self-esteem they need to make it through those often grueling tween and teen years and eventually hit adulthood running.

“Hi, How Are You” Foundation Aims to Inspire Conversations About Mental Health: If you enjoy Daniel Johnston, you’re going to enjoy this.

How Marijuana Use Can Alter Brain Function and Induce Psychotic Behavior: Does marijuana help or hurt mental health? It’s become an age-old question, hasn’t it? We’ve read studies that say it helps; we’ve read studies that say it hurts. The latest in the ebb and flow of whether marijuana hurts or helps suggests heavy marijuana use could cause long-term negative effects, especially for people who begin smoking pot at a young age, and is linked to changes in the parts of our brains associated with habit formation and reward processing.

Key to Willpower Lies in Believing You Have It in Abundance: A new study involving more than 1,100 Americans and 1,600 Europeans and a psychological assessment tool called the Implicit Theory of Willpower for Strenuous Mental Activities Scale suggests Americans believe the have less stamina for mental activities than Europeans.

Don’t Blame Mental Illness for Mass Shootings; Blame Men: Usually the arguments for and against stronger gun control revolve around mental illness in some way. However, some think “toxic masculinity” is to blame for mass shootings.

Psychology Around the Net: January 20, 2018

Alicia Sparks

Alicia Sparks is a freelance writer and editor and the creator of, where she blogs to help new freelance writers get their quills in the pot, so to speak. Among animal rights, music, and physical wellness, her passions include mental health and advocacy. Here at Psych Central she works as Syndication Editor as well as authors Your Body, Your Mind and World of Psychology's weekly "Psychology Around the Net."

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APA Reference
Sparks, A. (2018). Psychology Around the Net: January 20, 2018. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 28, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Jul 2018 (Originally: 20 Jan 2018)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Jul 2018
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