• Jesse Eisenberg on exactitude and too much attention

    Jesse Eisenberg on exactitude and too much attention

    Many talented artists share traits such as perfectionism and a need to “get it right” – and also high sensitivity, which can make fame and attention very stressful, even overwhelming. See the post Kristen Stewart and shyness and sensitivity for one example. In her article “Jesse Eisenberg on playing Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in ‘The […]

  • Björk: using her music for teaching science

    Björk: using her music for teaching science

    A new article on the Fast Company magazine site Co.Create notes that musician Björk is extending her album ‘Biophilia’ and related iTunes apps to a “multi-platform educational program for kids.” Here are some excerpts from the article: Album, concerts, repeat. That’s the music industry’s formula, and after more than 19 years of mostly following it, the […]

  • Don't Mess With My Brain [Mental Health and Creative People]

    Don’t Mess With My Brain [Mental Health and Creative People]

    In the movie “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (1975, based on the novel by Ken Kesey), criminal Randle Patrick McMurphy (Jack Nicholson) is transferred to a mental institution due to his apparently deranged behavior, which turns out to be a deliberate gambit by him to serve out his sentence in an easier place than […]

  • Traumatic Childhood, Creative Adult

    Traumatic Childhood, Creative Adult

    Halle Berry said she recalls being terrified that her violent father, who physically abused her mother, would turn on her. “I think I’ve spent my adult life dealing with the sense of low self-esteem that sort of implanted in me. Somehow I felt not worthy.” She explained, “Before I’m ‘Halle Berry,’ I’m little Halle…a little […]

  • Creative collaboration

    Creative collaboration

    The wry and witty TV comedy series “30 Rock” (starring and created by Tina Fey) often features scenes in the writers room for the fictional variety show, “TGS with Tracy Jordan.” Actor Keith Powell (at left in photo) plays the stuffy, Harvard-educated writer James “Toofer” Spurlock. He sat in on the real “30 Rock” writers room […]

  • What’s wrong with goal-setting?

    What’s wrong with goal-setting?

    By Kenneth W. Christian, Ph.D. Listen folks. Talking about goals won’t get you there any more than going to church will get you to heaven. If you do not passionately believe in where you are going, don’t give goal-setting a bad name by using the word goal to describe listless me-too-ism. A goal has to […]


  • More Articles

  • Can being grumpy improve our thinking?

    Mood disorders like anxiety and depression generally interfere with thinking and creativity. A variety of writers including Eric Maisel, Kay Redfield Jamison and Tom Wootton express different perspectives on my site Depression and Creativity. There is even a post on Irritable Male Syndrome, about the work of Jed Diamond. But what about being grumpy? Here […]

  • Emotions both enhance and impair higher cognition

    Emotions both enhance and impair higher cognition

    A study reported in the journal Psychological Science concluded that watching funny videos on the internet at work isn’t necessarily wasting time. “People may be taking advantage of the latest psychological science — putting themselves in a good mood so they can think more creatively. “Generally, positive mood has been found to enhance creative problem […]

  • Anxiety and the Amygdala

    Anxiety and the Amygdala

    A news article reports, “The amygdala is known to be involved in social anxiety, posttraumatic stress, and obsessions and compulsions, and is now being linked with separation anxiety and general anxiety.” // Excerpt from lyrics (based on Emily Dickinson) in video: Fearing – by The Amygdaloids While I was fearing it came But with less […]

  • Elyn Saks, Schizophrenia and Creativity

    Elyn Saks, Schizophrenia and Creativity

    Cognitive psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman, Ph.D. notes that schizotypy, a milder version of schizophrenia, “consists of a constellation of personality traits that are evident in some degree in everyone.” “Research confirms a link between schizotypy and creative achievement. In particular, ‘positive’ schizotypal traits such as unusual perceptual experiences and magical beliefs tend to be elevated […]

  • Ai Weiwei: artist and activist: "Make a little effort"

    Ai Weiwei: artist and activist: “Make a little effort”

    The site for the documentary “Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry” by director Alison Klayman describes him as “China’s most famous international artist, and its most outspoken domestic critic. “Against a backdrop of strict censorship and an unresponsive legal system, Ai expresses himself and organizes people through art and social media. In response, Chinese authorities have shut […]

  • Self-esteem: what's so good about it?

    Self-esteem: what’s so good about it?

    Gene Simmons, asked about joining the new Donald Trump program “The Apprentice: Celebrity Edition” (starting this evening), gave one of his typical tongue in cheek responses: “I’m the next apprentice because I’m the best of the best” – adding with a big grin: “Look how sincere I am.” He also commented, “You can’t get really […]

  • Fear and trembling and an audience – heal anxiety

    A fate worse than death Speaking in front of an audience is reportedly more fearsome than death. It doesn’t have to be a crowd – simply another person. But an audience of any size can be helpful in encouraging our creative expression and personal development – more so if we can be relaxed and authentic. […]

  • Go ahead - watch funny videos

    Go ahead – watch funny videos

    From Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, via ScienceDaily: People who watch funny videos on the internet at work aren’t necessarily wasting time. They may be taking advantage of the latest psychological science — putting themselves in a good mood so they can think more creatively. “Generally, positive mood has been […]

  • To identify and serve the unknowing gifted

    To identify and serve the unknowing gifted

    By Sara Harrier Over the decades, education and resources for gifted youth have made significant contributions to the education and mental health fields.  Many thinkers have shed light on not just the intellectual differences of the gifted, but on the unique personality traits and social-emotional needs of this population. And it’s been hugely liberating and […]

  • Gods and prodigies, freaks and geeks: building identity

    Gods and prodigies, freaks and geeks: building identity

    Wunderkind, genius, prodigy. Freak, geek, nerd. How we label exceptional people and ourselves affects our identity and what we think about the reality and value of our talents, and the possibilities of expressing them in the world. One of the most positive experiences for me in high school was my friendship with an artist (painter, […]

  • Running From Crazy docu by Barbara Kopple with Mariel Hemingway

    Running From Crazy docu by Barbara Kopple with Mariel Hemingway

    Running from Crazy is a new documentary by Barbara Kopple. “Through the eyes of Mariel Hemingway…it chronicles the story of three of the author’s grandchildren, Mariel, Margaux Hemingway and Joan ‘Muffet’ Hemingway (diagnosed with “bipolar schizophrenia”), daughters of Jack Hemingway, and their struggles with the family history of substance abuse, mental illness and suicide. “The […]

  • Brian Vaszily on authentic happiness

    Brian Vaszily on authentic happiness

    Brian Vaszily is author of The Nine Intense Experiences. One of many reviews: “An insightful guide that will help you to rediscover wonder, awe, and enchantment in your life, The 9 Intense Experiences will remind you how to play and have fun while creating a life of meaning and fulfillment.” — Arielle Ford, author of […]

  • Creating is a way to channel our emotional intensity

    Creating is a way to channel our emotional intensity

    “Creating art has always been a way to channel emotional intensity.” Psychologist Cheryl Arutt “Our impulse to be creative can be one of the most dynamic methods of meeting and redeeming one’s devils and demons.” Psychologist Stephen A. Diamond Acting is one form of creative expression that artists can use to channel their intensity and […]

  • A great artist can come from any background

    A great artist can come from any background

    “In many ways, the work of a critic is easy. We risk very little yet enjoy a position over those who offer up their work and their selves to our judgment. “We thrive on negative criticism, which is fun to write and to read. But the bitter truth we critics must face is that, in […]


Also see Categories/tags and the Archives for more titles.