January 31, 2017

How Is The Amount Of Television You Watch Linked To Your Self-Esteem?

We all have those days where we size up our reflection in the mirror, sucking in our bellies and pulling back our shoulders to improve the way we look. But a recent study has shown that they way we feel about ourselves doesn’t have much to do with the mirror at all. Instead, it’s all about our level of life satisfaction. In a recent study published in the journal Body Image1, researchers surveyed 1200 participants about their beliefs on self-esteem, television viewing, personal characteristics and romantic relationships. For women, satisfaction with their overall appearance was the third strongest predictor of […]
January 12, 2017

New Study Shows Selfies Make You Happier

You only have to open Facebook or jump onto Instagram to see how prolific the culture of ‘me’ has become. From people photographing the food they are about to eat, to taking posed photos of themselves smiling into the camera; it would appear that narcissism is alive and well. We are regaled almost every day about the evils of social media, of overusing our phones, of the deleterious effects of too much screen time for kids. The advances in technology have come with an almost Amish level of moral judgment and servitudes. But what are we to do? We love […]
January 12, 2017

What If We Don’t Have Enough Dopamine? Part 2

In our last article we looked at the two neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine. We also looked at the different types of depression that manifest when one is depleted in one or the other.We also had a look at the nature of substances of addiction and how they interact and interfere with the regulation of dopamine in your brain. You can read Part 1 of the article here. In this article we’re going to have a look at what happens to your mind, mood and body when you’re depleted in dopamine. In essence, what does it look like if you’re low in […]
November 24, 2016
Rejection

Why Rejection Hurts

Rejection hurts. But it doesn’t just hurt emotionally, it hurts physically. We refer to hurt and pain when we refer to our emotional status. Interestingly, they’re the same adjectives we use to describe physical pain. When we break up with a lover, or feel ridiculed or rejected by our peers we feel ‘hurt’. And it’s not just poets that know that a lover’s quarrel or parting can cause ‘pain’. But why is that? As it turns out, it’s because of the way our brains are wired. Researchers from Michigan University’s, Department of Psychology, have been studying the pain of rejection and the results […]
November 1, 2016

Are Altruistic People Wired Differently? (Part 1 of 2)

Story at a Glance. Emotional, social and moral integrity come from a region of the brain referred to as the amygdala. The amygdala is linked to all of our sensory processing systems and gives a corresponding emotional response to the information processed. Psychopaths have an abnormal psychophysiological response to emotional stimuli, resulting in a reduced capacity to feel empathy for others experiencing pain or distress. It’s an interesting question. Why are some people more compassionate than others? What makes one person altruistic and another self serving? Well, perhaps not surprisingly, the answer lies in our brains. To be precise the […]
July 12, 2016

The Paradox Of Vulnerability: How Being Okay With Weakness Makes You Stronger

Here’s a statement you may not expect to read in the Harvard Business Review: “Expressing your vulnerability makes you stronger [1].” It’s wisdom that may have been around for a while, but it’s been popularised by the recent work of researcher Brené Brown. It appears that vulnerability can be a real advantage when it comes to many aspects of life. Brown is a renowned psychologist and researcher, whose work led her to author the book ‘Daring Greatly: how the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent and lead.’ Brown’s work shows that we do best in […]
July 6, 2016

The Art Of Reappraisal: What Neuroscience Tells Us About Anger

Anger is a part of life, just like stress, disappointment, failure, and the plethora of positive emotions that exist at the other end of the scale. However, anger is often an emotion we don’t know how to handle well. What’s the best course of action? Fight anger with anger? Vent? Suppress? Reappraise? Neuroscience has a little something to say on the matter. According to Time Magazine, some typical responses to anger or negative emotion are actually both unhelpful and unhealthy. “Suppressing anger is rarely a good idea,” says Barker [1]. “You can bottle up your feelings and not look angry. […]