How to turn your fears and anxieties into positivity and productivity with cognitive reframing

screen-shot-2015-10-07-at-4-25-42-pm

Reframing is one of those psychological tools that just plain works. It’s practical, simple, and with practice and repetition it often leads to real change in people with a variety of thinking problems.

It works because we rarely question our own interpretations, the meanings we construct when examining a set of facts, or our own introspections of internal emotional states. So much of the things the anxiety and fear we feel when anticipating the future is just the result of plucking from a grab bag of best guesses and assumptions, shaky models of reality that may or may not be accurate and will likely pan out much differently than we predict.

DownloadiTunesStitcherRSSSoundcloud

This episode is brought to you by The Great Courses. Get 80 percent off Understanding the Mysteries of Human Behavior presented by Professor Mark Leary along with many other fantastic lecture series by visiting this link and ordering today!

This episode is sponsored by Wealthfront, the automated investment service that makes it easy to invest your money the right way. Visit this link to to get your first $10,000 managed for free.

This episode of You Are Not So Smart is also brought to you by Squarespace, the all-in-one platform that makes it fast and easy to create your own professional website or online portfolio. For a free trial and 10 percent off, go to Squarespace.com and use the offer code SOSMART.

Support the show directly by becoming a patron! Read the rest

How filmmakers manipulate our emotions using color

KjVwqb

Specific color palettes are used by filmmakers to manipulate our emotions, from warm red tones for romances to blue, cold tones for horror flicks. The Dust Bowl-toned "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" (2000) was the first film to be digitally color graded from beginning to end.

If you're curious about the psychology of color, check out classics like Johannes Itten's "The Art of Color: The Subjective Experience and Objective Rationale of Color" and the books of Faber Birren.

Read the rest

How To Recognize and Handle Abnormal People: A Manual for the Police Officer

police008

In 1954, the National Association for Mental Health first issued the book "How To Recognize and Handle Abnormal People: A Manual for the Police Officer." Included were techniques on dealing with all kinds of "abnormal persons," from psychopaths, drug addicts, and the "mentally retarded" to civil protestors and those involved in family disturbances.

A selection of scans is below. And if you're not satisfied, you can purchase a copy of the 1975 edition on Amazon for the low price of $103.

(Print via Weird Universe)

Read the rest

Blindsight: weird phenomenon deepens the mystery of consciousness

untitled
Blindsight is a strange phenomenon that sometimes occurs when people have lost sight due to visual cortex damage but still respond to visual stimuli outside of their conscious awareness. New research into blindsight is offering clues, and even more riddles, about how we can "pay attention" outside of what we historically have considered conscious thought. From David Robson's fascinating article in BBC Future:

One of the first tasks (in a recent research effort) was to test exactly what blindsight patients are capable of without their conscious visual awareness – and the results have been quite remarkable. Of particular interest has been the fact that they can sense emotion: when presented with faces, they can tell whether it is happy or sad, angry or surprised, and they even start to unconsciously mimic the expressions. “Even though they did not report anything at a conscious level, we could show a change in attitude, a synchronisation of emotional expressions to the pictures in their blind field,” says (Tilburg University scientist Marco) Tamietto...

Besides mirroring expressions, they also show physiological signs of stress when they see a picture of a frightened face...

In 2008, Tamietto and (blindsight research pioneer Lawrence) Weiskrantz’s team put another blindsight patient through the most gruelling test yet... He was blind across the whole of his visual field, and normally walked with a white cane. But the team took away his cane and then loaded a corridor with furniture that might potentially trip him up, before asking him make his way to the other side.

Read the rest

Wondering if someone is a narcissist? Just ask them.

vZoRBq

This new video from New York Magazine's "The Science of Us" series is based on scientific research conducted at Indiana University and Ohio State University that resulted in the Single-Item Narcissism Scale. From a 2014 news release about that research:

In a series of 11 experiments involving more than 2,200 people of all ages, the researchers found they could reliably identify narcissistic people by asking them this exact question (including the note):

Read the rest

Tell-all free-to-play-game dev's confessions

4170395737_2c647fcc6a_b

An anonymous developer for a free-to-play game explains how his company stalked its most prolific players, creating fake sexy-lady Facebook accounts to friend them in order to gain insight into their proclivities so that super-expensive, one-off virtual goods could be made and targeted to them. Read the rest

"Crisis actors": a conspiracy theory that re-victimizes shooting survivors

"Social threat" is the psychologists' term for the urge to recast events that threaten our identities in new lights; it's the phenomenon behind some gun advocates' insistence that mass shootings are false-flag ops cooked up by governments to take away Americans' guns. Read the rest

Mid-Century Misery: the discontented delights of Stevan Dohanos

Dohanos was a prolific American painter and illustrator with over 125 Saturday Evening Post covers to his credit. Read the rest

Psychological disorder causes you to hallucinate your doppelgänger

da02-web

In the book The Man Who Wasn't There, Anil Ananthaswamy explores mysteries of self, including the weirdness of autoscopic phenomena, a kind of hallucination in which you are convinced that you are having an out-of-body experience or face to face with your non-existent twin. Read the rest

Mobile phone use may worsen depression

ron-bennetts

PUMP, or Problematic Use of Mobile Phone, happens when users turn to their phones instead of in-person contact to alleviate depression, according to a new study in Computers in Human Behavior. Read the rest

Get high for free: stare in a friend's eyes for ten minutes

nan-palermo

Induced dissociative states are the best dissociative states, and one cheap and easy way to get there is to stare into someone's eyes for about ten minutes. More researchers are looking into the phenomenon. Read the rest

Deep-voiced politicians have an edge

lr1foau8zsxbsfjmjxli
Two recent University of Miami research studies suggest that politicians with deep voices are more likely to win an election than candidates with higher-pitched voices. "With one exception: when running against a female opponent, candidates with higher voices were more popular, especially if they were men," according to Scientific American. Read the rest

Psychopaths are more immune to "contagious" yawns

Macaca_fuscata_juvenile_yawning

When you see someone yawn and then feel the urge to yawn yourself, it's a sign of social traits like empathy. According to new research from Baylor University, people who scored higher on the Psychopathic Personality Inventory test were less likely to "catch" a yawn. From Baylor University:

Based on the psychological test results, the frequency of yawns and the amount of physiological response of muscle, nerve and skin, the study showed that the less empathy a person had, the less likely he or she was to "catch" a yawn.

"The take-home lesson is not that if you yawn and someone else doesn't, the other person is a psychopath," (lead researcher Brian) Rundle cautions. "A lot of people didn't yawn, and we know that we're not very likely to yawn in response to a stranger we don't have empathetic connections with.

"But what we found tells us there is a neurological connection -- some overlap -- between psychopathy and contagious yawning. This is a good starting point to ask more questions."

And if you'd like to learn more about what makes a psychopath, I highly recommend Jon Ronson's excellent book "The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the Madness Industry."

photo: Daisuke Tashiro - Flickr Read the rest

Your Android unlock pattern sucks as much as your password did

In Tell Me Who You Are, and I Will Tell You Your Lock Pattern, Marte Løge presented some of her Master's Thesis research on the guessability of Android lock-patterns -- and guess what? Read the rest

British intelligence's use of persuasion psychology

Hypnodisc
The documents leaked by Edward Snowden revealed a division of British intelligence focused on the use of psychological science to influence, deceive, and infiltrate suspected terrorist cells, hostile states, criminal gangs, and activist groups. Vaughan "Mind Hacks" Bell investigates, and notes that some of their techniques draw heavily from the work of Robert Cialdini, author of Influence, an absolute must-read classic book about techniques of persuasion. Read the rest

What magicians, con-artists, and scammers can teach us about humility and humanity

rasputin
Before we had names for them or a science to study their impact, the people who could claim the most expertise on biases, fallacies, heuristics and all the other recently popularized quirks of human reasoning were scam artists, con artists, and magicians.

How the color "drunk tank pink" is used as mind control

dtp

Atlas Obscura, a website about unusual places around the world, has a great video series, too. In this episode of Atlas Obscura's 100 Wonders, Dylan Thuras tells the story of Baker-Miller pink (aka drunk tank pink) and how it was used to try to control people's emotions.

PREVIOUSLY: Why "Drunk Tank Pink" is a poor paint color choice for your baby's bedroom

Read the rest

More posts