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Psychology Around the Net: March 11, 2017


Happy Saturday, sweet readers!

Well, depending on where you live in the world, you’ll be “springing forward” late tonight (or early tomorrow — just depends on how you look at it). Soon, the sun will start rising earlier and setting later (which is great news for many people who deal with the most common type of seasonal affective disorder), but before we reap the benefits of more sunlight, we first must adjust to “losing” an hour of our day.

Fortunately, “falling back” and “springing forward” has never affected me much; however, it can wreak havoc on many people, especially when it comes to sleep.

If daylight savings messes with your sleep, check out WebMD’s How Sleep Is Affected by Time Changes for a heads up on how you’ll feel and some tips on adjusting while your internal clock resets.

Now, let’s get on with the latest in mental health news! This week we take a look at how to conquer your fear of public speaking, why certain mental health patients choose therapy over medication, why positive thinking isn’t always all it’s cracked up to be, and more.

62 Tips on Crushing Public Speaking: Ever heard of glossophobia? Glossophobia (sometimes referred to as speech anxiety) is — simply put — the fear of public speaking. People suffer from glossophobia for a number of reasons (maybe you gave a presentation at work and everyone seemed bored, or maybe you were laughed at in third grade and never moved past it), but Sol Orwell — who says public speaking was the scariest thing he did in 2016 (which he accomplished 26 times!) — has compiled a list of tips to help you prepare for a public speaking event so you can conquer that fear. They range from understanding who you are so you can be yourself to expecting, owning, and moving on from the things that go wrong.

People Who Seek Mental Health Help Choose Therapy Over Medication: An analysis published by the American Psychological Association found that mental health patients were more likely to refuse — or not complete — their recommended mental health treatment if was in the form of medication rather than therapy. When it came to refusing medication, people with depression and social anxiety were twice as likely to refuse, while people with panic disorder were nearly three times as likely to refuse.

VA to Start Offering Mental Health Care to ‘Bad Paper’ Veterans: Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin announced his department will soon start providing mental health care services for veterans who have “other-than-honorable dismissals,” an issue veterans advocates have pushed for years, stating a great number of troops who receive “bad paper” discharges do so because of erratic behavior or substance abuse problems and that mental health care denial increases the chances of suicide. Shulkin credits Colorado Rep. Mike Coffman with “changing [his] mind” on the matter.

The Genius in People with Learning Disabilities, Mental Health Disorders: According to psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, and best-selling author Dr. Gail Saltz, the number of people with learning disabilities and mental health disorders who have exhibited extraordinarily genius abilities in certain areas is not a coincidence. In her book The Power of Different: The Link Between Disorder and Genius, Saltz explains people who have the brain differences that cause certain learning and mental health disorders (such as dyslexia and depression) can tap into more creativity, artistic abilities, empathy, and visualization abilities — because of those same brain differences. (EDITOR’S NOTE: Psych Central neither is an affiliate of nor makes any money from The Power of Different: The Link Between Disorder and Genius.)

“Positive Thinking” Has Turned Happiness into a Duty and a Burden, Says a Danish Psychologist: It’s OK to be NOT OK; in fact, embracing the fact that sometimes you’re NOT OK — you’re not fine, things are not great, you don’t want to smile — could be better for your mental and emotional health. Says Svend Brinkmann, a psychology professor at Aalborg University in Denmark, “I believe our thoughts and emotions should mirror the world. When something bad happens, we should be allowed to have negative thoughts and feelings about it because that’s how we understand the world.”

This Could Explain Why People With OCD Can’t Overcome Their Urges: According to researchers, a new study involving 78 people and a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanner, and mild electric shocks associated with green and red faces (you’ll just have to read it!) might explain why people with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) have trouble overcoming their rituals; their brains might find it extremely difficult to “unlearn negative associations.”

Psychology Around the Net: March 11, 2017

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: March 11, 2017. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 29, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Jul 2018 (Originally: 11 Mar 2017)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Jul 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.