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The Psych Central Podcast

The Psych Central Podcast

Hosted by Gabe Howard

The Psych Central Podcast is an award-winning, weekly podcast that approaches psychology and mental health in a casual and accessible fashion. Listen as our hosts speak candidly with experts to break down complex topics in simple and understandable ways.

The Psych Central Podcast is hosted by Associate Editor Gabe Howard and overseen by Dr. John Grohol. Learn more about the host here.

Want to appear as a guest on the show? Please contact us at show -at- psychcentral.com. Interested in advertising on the podcast? Check out the Psych Central Podcast Media Kit (PDF) and contact us at show -at- psychcentral.com if interested.


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Episodes of the Psych Central Podcast

General

Podcast: What’s Online Counseling Really Like?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales discuss online counseling. Joining them is Haesue Jo of BetterHelp.com, which offers online counseling and is also the sponsor of The Psych Central Show.

In addition to answering specific questions about Better Help, the conversation discusses how online counseling differs from in-person therapy, what types of issues are (and are not) good fits for this type of counseling, and what someone can expect from this kind of service. Also discussed is why some people are still skeptical of online therapy (or other types of virtual medical services) and why they shouldn’t be. 



Bipolar

Podcast: Bipolar Advocate Jessie – More Than Just Glenn Close’s Sister

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome Jessie Close, sister of acclaimed actress Glenn Close.

Jessie shares the story of her son’s diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder, followed by her own diagnosis of bipolar disorder. Spurred by a desire to make people more aware of the stigma surrounding mental illness, Jessie reached out to Glenn for help.

The result was the founding of Bring Change to Mind, a nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging dialogue about mental health, and to raising awareness, understanding, and empathy.

Jessie tells of the making of the incredible public service announcement, directed by Ron Howard, and featuring Glenn, Jessie, and Jessie’s son, Calen.



General

Podcast: Rachel Star: Stunt Girl, Schizophrenia Advocate


In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome as their guest, Rachel Star, a stunt girl and YouTube sensation who lives with schizophrenia. Rachel had schizophrenia as a child but was not diagnosed until her early twenties. She describes what it was like as a child and the moment she realized that the things she saw weren’t seen by others. Later in life, as an early adopter of online media, she began posting videos of herself doing outlandish things. The videos became quite popular, even being studied in classes at universities! And yes, she talks about being set on fire.


General

Podcast: Help! My Coworker Is a Narcissist!


In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome back Dr. Ramani Durvasula to discuss narcissism… this time, in the workplace. Everyone believes they’ve got a narcissist as a coworker and, often, they’re correct. In this episode, you’ll learn how to tell if your coworker is a narcissist, how common this is (especially among executives), and how to handle them, even if it’s your boss. You’ll learn about gaslighting and the link between narcissism and low self-esteem. Dr. Ramani also warns what can happen to a person who remains in the sort of toxic workplace environment created by narcissists.


General

Podcast: What Toll Does Texting Take on Us?

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In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin, who shares her experiences working in the field of neurofeedback. Specifically, she speaks on how technology – especially the intense use of handheld technology such as texting on smartphones – is affecting our brains. Dr. Russell-Chapin describes the differences that can be seen in the brain waves of a heavy texter as opposed to a “normal” baseline brain, how we seem to be losing our paralinguistic abilities, and offers insight to ways in which we can achieve a better balance in our lives by changing the way in which we use such technology.


Depression

Podcast: A Graphic (Novel) Twist on the Personal Recovery Story


In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome guest Brent Williams, author of Out of the Woods, a graphic novel that tells the story of his battle with depression. Williams, a human rights attorney in New Zealand, “hit a wall” that derailed his life. It took years for him to understand that depression was the cause and what he needed to do about it. He speaks of how journaling was a great help to him in the recovery process and how it led to the idea of doing a graphic novel. He also speaks of how his battle with cancer was “a breeze” compared to fighting depression.


General

Podcast: Why Do People Believe Conspiracy Theories?


In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales discuss conspiracy theories with guest John M. Grohol, Psy.D., founder and CEO of Psych Central.com.


Dr. Grohol explains what exactly is meant by “conspiracy theory” and where the theories come from. Discussion includes questions of whether conspiracy theories are ways for people to rationalize why horrific tragedies occur; if they are based on distrust of authority figures; and if those who believe them are just attention-seekers. Ultimately, the question is raised of how to respond to them.

Can we convince theorists that they’re wrong and, if so, how do we do it?


General

Podcast: What’s It Really Like Being in a Psych Hospital?


In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales discuss the myths and realities of being admitted to an inpatient psychiatric hospital. Gabe shares his personal experience of voluntarily entering a psychiatric hospital when he was suicidal. He tells of how his expectations of the situation differed from what he actually experienced. He shares what he found to be the most frightening aspects of his stay, as well as how he passed the time while there. He shares how his family reacted to his admission to the psychiatric hospital, and the aspect to the stay that he describes as “life-altering.”


General

Podcast: The Challenges of Returning to Work After Mental Illness


In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales discuss the challenges of returning to the workplace after being out for an extended amount of time, such as while recovering from mental illness. Gabe shares his first-hand experience of returning to work after four years, including the difficulties he faced, the resources he relied on, and what he wished he’d done differently. Also discussed are workplace discrimination, advocating for yourself, and the question of whether or not you should disclose your mental illness to your coworkers (and if so, to whom and when).


General

Podcast: How Has Mental Health Advocacy Changed?


In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome Andy Behrman, veteran mental health speaker, writer, and advocate who is the author of Electroboy: A Memoir of Mania. Andy shares his views on how mental health advocacy has changed over the past fifteen years and the ways in which our views of stigma have evolved. He also shares the story of his interview with noted actor and bipolar advocate Stephen Fry, his ideas on how to help fund advocacy groups, and his experiences with electroconvulsive therapy and memory loss. And, yes, he tells us how he got the nickname of "Electroboy." 


Anger

Podcast: What’s the REAL Link Between Anger and Violence?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales discuss mental illness and violence. More specifically, they address the real culprit behind the vast majority of violence: anger. Their discussion dispels the myth that anger is an unhealthy emotion, teaches ways to express anger in a healthy fashion, and addresses the widely held belief that most mentally ill people are violent (and why people hold this belief). The discussion also covers the real factor in predicting whether someone might become violent and ends with suggestions on ways anyone can learn how to get control of anger in their lives.


Depression

Podcast: What Does Postpartum Depression Feel Like?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales speak with guest Christine Hammond, a licensed mental health counselor who has also suffered from postpartum depression in two of her three pregnancies. She shares her story of why neither she nor her husband recognize postpartum depression in the first pregnancy, how it appeared rapidly during the second pregnancy, and the fears they both had that it would occur in the third pregnancy. Christine also speaks of the shame carried by and stigma against mothers dealing with it, as well as postpartum depression’s biggest lie.


Agitation

Podcast: How Can You Calm an Agitated Person?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales speak with guest Dr. Scott Zeller, renowned psychiatric emergency services physician and expert on agitation. Dr. Zeller explains exactly what agitation means, in the medical setting, and how it differs from other states, such as violence. He dispels a few myths about agitation, and explains how the use of physical restraints and sedation are the wrong approach in almost all situations. Most importantly, he speaks on how common agitation is, even outside the medical setting, and how anyone can learn to de-escalate the emotions of someone in a state of agitation.


Depression

Podcast: What Is Postpartum Depression?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome guest Dr. Emma Basch. Dr. Basch is a licensed clinical psychologist as well as the author of PsychCentral’s Maternity Matters blog. She joins our hosts (two childless men, it should be noted) to discuss the many aspects of postpartum depression. Listen in to learn some surprising facts and statistics about postpartum depression, including how common it is. Learn how it differs from “regular” depression, the ties it has to anxiety, the known causes of postpartum depression, and several suggestions for how to treat it.


General

Podcast: How Can We Transform Stigma?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome guest Mike Veny, a mental health speaker with lived experience, creator of Transforming Stigma, and host of the Mike Veny Show podcast. In a serious examination of stigma, Mike discusses exactly what stigma really is and explains how there is a cycle that stigma takes and what we can do to break it. He gives advice on how we can all approach the uncomfortable conversations we are likely to have about mental illness. Mike also shares his story of illness and a rather unconventional path that led to his recovery.


General

Podcast: What Is a Daily Practice and Why Should I Have One?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome guest counselor and author Victoria Gigante. Victoria shares the story of how she grew dissatisfied with a life that others would consider to be “perfect,” how she made huge changes by essentially walking away from it all, and in the process developed her life-changing “daily practice” approach to self-care.
Victoria explains just what a daily practice is for, the different forms it can take, and how it can help each and every one of us. She gives advice on how to start one, and explores the many reasons why people think they are unable to do so.


General

Podcast: What’s It Like to Live with Schizophrenia?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome guest Tanara Simpson, a young woman who was diagnosed with schizophrenia in her 20s. In this interview, Tanara shares the story of her diagnosis, including the symptoms that led her from doctor to doctor, landed her in jail, and ultimately led to a physician who helped her get on the road to recovery. She talks about her partnership with Janssen Pharmaceuticals in helping her to get the word out about her story, and she shares how she maintains a positive attitude in spite of having a life-altering disease and works as a certified peer support specialist, helping others who have also been diagnosed with schizophrenia. Tanara's story is truly an inspirational one.


Children and Teens

Podcast: What Can We Learn from the Michelle Carter Texting Suicide Case?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales examine the recent case of Michelle Carter, a young woman in Massachusetts who was tried for involuntary manslaughter in the suicide of her eighteen-year old friend, Conrad Roy, based primarily on a series of text messages and phone calls. In what came as a shock to many, Carter was found guilty. The trial focused on extensive messages between the two, especially in the month leading up to Roy’s death, in which it is shown that the then seventeen-year old Carter went from urging Roy to seek help to actively helping him plan for his own death and, finally, to blatantly urging him to take his own life.


Bipolar

Podcast: Should Religious Figures Give Advice on Mental Illness?

In this episode of the Psych Central Show, hosts Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales welcome Katie Dale, a young woman with bipolar disorder who was convinced by a pastor to discontinue her medication and instead put her faith in God to heal her.

Unsurprisingly, going off her meds plunged Katie into a serious bipolar episode. She resumed her medications and has been living well ever since.

Katie shares with listeners a touching, yet very pointed letter that she wrote to this pastor explaining how she understood his motives. But, she cautions, this doesn’t change the fact that his advice was harmful.