Last Friday, I went to another Dave Matthews Band concert. I know what you’re thinking: “Three DMB concerts in one month?!” Well, considering they’re my favorite band and they’re going on a break next summer, I have to get it while the gettin’s good, right?
However, last Friday’s trip wasn’t planned; it was completely spontaneous. While I was finishing up some work, I received a message from a friend who couldn’t make the show and had two free tickets for me if I wanted them.
The show was almost five hours away, meaning I had about an hour to get ready, get packed, and get on the road.
“Um…can I do this?” I thought. It took only about 0.5 seconds before I answered, “YES I CAN.”
So, I did, and later friends and family kept talking about how spontaneous it was, which made me start thinking about how spontaneous behavior relates to our mental health.
During my research, I found The Wisdom of Spontaneity: Part 5 by Leon F Seltzer Ph.D. asks, “What does spontaneity have to do with happiness?” and goes on to speculate on the “ultimate wisdom of spontaneity: the faith and abiding trust in one’s self from which only good things can come.”
I agree with that wholeheartedly, and if you agree — even the smallest little bit — I invite you to do something completely spontaneous this week!
Now, let’s get on with this week’s latest in mental health news.
The Final Workplace Taboo: Mental Health — And Why It’s Time To Take It Seriously: Honestly, workplaces should have started taking mental health seriously a long time ago (and to be fair, some have). Check out these five reasons why it’s crucial your colleagues (and you!) must be educated about mental health and supported when it’s time to get help.
Don’t Read This! (It’s Only the Most Valuable Psychology Hack You Can Learn.) Clever title. I bet you read it, didn’t you? Bet you’re going to read the article, too.
Mental Disorders the Most Costly Illnesses: A new report, written by Charles Roehrig, PhD, founding director of the Center for Sustainable Health Spending at Altarum Institute, Ann Arbor, Michigan, states that mental disorders cost more than $200 billion a year in the U.S., exceeding the amount of money spent for other common, physical health problems like strokes, heart disease, and even cancer.
Teenage Brain On Social Media: During this “first-of-its-kind” study from UCLA, researchers scanned the brains of 32 teenagers between the ages of 13 and 18 and found that factors like the number of likes they get on their photos activate the same brain circuits that kick in when winning money or eating chocolate.
U.S. Comic Finds Humor in Abyss of Mental Illness: When on stage, nothing is off limits for comedienne Maria Bamford, including thinking about suicide, living life on medication, her family’s not-always-helpful ways to help her, her own meltdowns, and even when she ended up in a psych ward. Bamford has a new Netflix series coming out, “Lady Dynamite,” a show “in which she stars and plays herself — a mediumly successful Los Angeles comic trying to get back on her feet after suffering a breakdown and spending six months living with her parents in Minnesota.”
Big Data Sleuths Uncover Clues to the Roots of Depression: Set aside the idea of finding a gene — or any genes — for depression, and take a look at this interview neuroscientist Eric Nestler gave Scientific American regarding “[t]ools to identify biological pathways that are instrumental in either inducing depression or protecting against it [that have] recently debuted — and hold the promise of providing leads for new drug therapies for psychiatric and neurological diseases.”