Category: Psychology

Entertainment psychology - A Jungian perspective on the feminine in film

Entertainment psychology – A Jungian perspective on the feminine in film

A new look at the Wizard of Oz John Beebe, MD is a Jungian analyst, and co-author, with Virginia Apperson, of the book, The Presence of the Feminine in Film. In a Shrink Rap Radio podcast interview, he talks about how movies bring to life female characters and the feminine aspect of our psyches, whether […]

Shelley Carson on developing creativity

Shelley Carson on developing creativity

Shelley Carson, Ph.D. of Harvard University teaches and conducts research on creativity, psychopathology, and resilience. Topics in our audio podcast interview related to the creative mind and developing creativity include some of Dr. Carson’s seven brain activation patterns she discusses in her book Your Creative Brain. Listen to the podcast: Shelley Carson on enhancing our […]

Video Gaming for Mental Health

Video Gaming for Mental Health

“When the player becomes stressed or fearful, the game will increase in intensity and difficulty. When the player calms himself, the game returns to its default state.” Game designer Erin Reynolds There are many different sorts of video games, and many studies on their psychological and social impacts – research that is often critical or […]

The science of feeling good

The science of feeling good

While psychology has mostly concentrated on mental health disorders and how to deal with them, the field of positive psychology is exploring what helps make us happy and fulfilled – feelings that support our personal development and achievement. The photo is psychologist Jeanne Nakamura appreciating the joking scowling of her colleague Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi of Claremont […]

Your Creative Mind with Learning Differences

Your Creative Mind with Learning Differences

“There were a lot of benefits to being dyslexic for me…I think I came into an appreciation of all those qualities of language…” Novelist Richard Ford The traditional framing of ADHD, dyslexia and some other conditions as “learning disorders” seems to be increasingly challenged by the views of many researchers and artists that these can […]

How we talk about ourselves may keep us afraid to be ourselves

Phyllis (Barbara Stanwyck): We’re both rotten. Walter Neff (Fred MacMurray): Only you’re a little more rotten. [Double Indemnity, 1944] Those sort of critical insults may be fun in movies or novels, but how we think of ourselves – or what we accept others saying about us – can have a deep influence on how we […]

Be more creative - Part 2

Be more creative – Part 2

Articles and other resources for helping you gain new perspectives and be more creative: ideas for enhancing creativity and innovation. ~~~~~~~ The Secret to Creativity: Mike Dillon at TEDxEastsidePrep “Creativity is not some sort of rare magic, it’s actually an infinite resource – and it’s kinda like a virus.” “Mike Dillon’s background spans over three […]

What about intuition?

What about intuition?

Can intuition be a useful extension or complement to rational thought? Many think so. Others caution it can be uncertain and misleading. Author and coach Tama J. Kieves notes we may block intuitive understanding because “It’s hard to let insights in, if we’ve dead bolted the doors. “Sometimes we are begging for clarity, just as […]

Director Joe Wright on His Dyslexia

Director Joe Wright on His Dyslexia

“Because I think visually, not being able to read meant that other parts of my brain were pushed further…” That is a comment by movie director Joe Wright about being dyslexic, from an NPR / All Things Considered show which I found thanks to the Dyslexic Advantage Facebook page of Brock Eide, MD, MA, and […]

Hilda Huang on Bach and video games; Gina Trapani on multitasking

Hilda Huang on Bach and video games; Gina Trapani on multitasking

Creative expression involves many skills and cognitive abilities, which may be enhanced by activities such as video games. And creative performance can enhance skills outside of art. Hilda Huang, 14, is acclaimed for her piano performances of Bach. She made her debut at Carnegie Hall at age 11. This is from a recent interview: Question: […]

Our Shadow Self

Our Shadow Self

Carl Jung: “The shadow is the negative side of the personality, the sum of all those unpleasant qualities we like to hide. … There is no light without shadow and no psychic wholeness without imperfection.” ~ ~ “I think many of us feel like we must wear a happy face all the time and overlook […]

Developing creativity - using our bad thoughts and dark side

Developing creativity – using our bad thoughts and dark side

Our shadow side is the multitude of personality qualities, instincts, urges and thoughts we may be offended by and actively ignore, deny or try to cover up. But this secret or unexplored inner landscape can be a source of personal growth and creative expression. It isn’t a matter of freely acting on our urges or […]

It Can’t Be Done

It Can’t Be Done

By Morty Lefkoe “It can’t be done” is never the truth. What people really are saying when they utter these words is: “I don’t how how to do it.” Or, “it can’t be done the way we’ve always tried in the past.” Or, “it can’t be done according to the only way I can think […]

Restlessness and Jagged Edges

Restlessness and Jagged Edges

“I believe that curiosity, wonder and passion are defining qualities of imaginative minds and great teachers; that restlessness and discontent are vital things; and that intense experience and suffering instruct us in ways that less intense emotions can never do. “I believe, in short, that we are equally beholden to heart and mind, and that […]

Too much pursuit of happiness?

Too much pursuit of happiness?

“I believe the ultimate aim of all human beings is to obtain happiness and a sense of fulfillment.” The Dalai Lama “The effort to try and feel happy is often precisely the thing that makes us miserable.” Oliver Burkeman Seemingly endowed with endless effervescent glee, Drew Barrymore has expressed an attitude about happiness and positive […]

More than conscious thinking in The Secret

More than conscious thinking in The Secret

In her article The Secret Behind The Secret, Susan Fuller reminds us that more than conscious thinking impacts our lives and success: “As The Secret streaks across the planet with dizzying speed, this seems like a good time to revisit this thing called ‘The Law of Attraction’. “Every book on achieving your goals and attracting […]

Jack Canfield on the subconscious mind

Jack Canfield on the subconscious mind

Personal development author and teacher Jack Canfield notes: “Your thoughts are powerful. They are real, they are measurable, they are energy. “The conscious mind has: – Limited processing capacity. – Short term memory (about 20 seconds) – The ability to manage 1 to 3 events at a time -Impulses that travel at 120 to 140 […]

Creating and Fear

Creating and Fear

Karen Moncrieff, after working for years as an actor, became a screenwriter. In a magazine article, she notes “Writing felt so comfortable in a way that acting never really did. With writing, I was using all parts of myself, all of my skills.” She said, “I let my emotions and feelings be my guide. I […]

Creative People: Robert Fritz on Believing vs. Creating

Creative People: Robert Fritz on Believing vs. Creating

Robert Fritz notes that most creative people do not always hold positive attitudes and thoughts, or think that well of themselves. Here are excerpts from an article of his: For years we have heard that what you believe will determine how well you will succeed in life. So every year, people diligently attempt to change […]

Resources on Creative People, Personality and Mental Health

Resources on Creative People, Personality and Mental Health

This long page includes a video of my online 1 hour presentation, plus multiple short video excerpts, plus notes and multiple links to articles and other resources. Main topics: Personality: High Sensitivity | Self Concept / Self Esteem Mental Health: Anxiety | Depression | Trauma Sections include: A Complex Personality Insecurity and Androgyny High Sensitivity […]

Toxic Criticism and Developing Creativity

Toxic Criticism and Developing Creativity

Healthy criticism can help refine our creative talents and projects, enabling our pursuit of excellence. But when criticism is based on excessive perfectionism or an unrealistic self concept, it can be destructive and self-limiting, eroding our creative assurance and vitality. In one of his podcast series, creativity coach and psychologist Eric Maisel declares, “Criticism is […]

Tripping ourselves up with blind spots

Tripping ourselves up with blind spots

The idea of a mental ‘blind spot’ may imply some kind of deficiency of cognitive ability, but psychologist Madeleine L. Van Hecke argues in her book Blind Spots: Why Smart People Do Dumb Things that even people who are very astute and intellectually capable can suffer lapses in reasonable behavior based on awareness. She argues […]

Matt Weiner, Lili Taylor, Carl Jung on using our subconscious

Matt Weiner, Lili Taylor, Carl Jung on using our subconscious

What lies beneath our usual waking consciousness provides so much of the material we can use for creative expression. The Red Book is a new publication of Carl Jung’s journals and explorations into his soul and psyche. More on that later, but first – two artists talk about using their subconscious for creative inspiration. A […]

Beliefs and self-deception and the cold water study

Beliefs and self-deception and the cold water study

Our beliefs can have a profound impact on our health, personal development and how well we live consciously and creatively. A PsyBlog post summarizes a social psychology experiment* demonstrating how potent and self-limiting beliefs can be. his project involved a group of students who were told they were taking part in a study about the […]

Bill Harris on consciousness technology & holosync

Bill Harris on consciousness technology & holosync

The image is from the book Contemplative Science: Where Buddhism and Neuroscience Converge, by B. Alan Wallace, founder and president of the Santa Barbara Institute for Consciousness Studies. The book notes “There are certainly kinds of neuronal activity that causally contribute to the emergence of specific states of consciousness and mental activity.” Bill Harris, Director […]

Sensation-seeking and ADHD and developing creativity

Sensation-seeking and ADHD and developing creativity

How do you respond to sensory input? According to research, some of us are more likely to be augmenters, or have nervous systems that amplify or increase sensory stimulation (which may help explain the trait of high sensitivity), and other people are reducers, who dampen or decrease sensory input, and find a need to pursue […]

The psychology of creativity: Performers and Excitabilities

The psychology of creativity: Performers and Excitabilities

“I’m an only child and I’m just a real loner kind of person, and yeah, kinda dark. But I’m happy. Not sad. I’m just shy and nervous… I was a loner in high school. I keep to myself, but I love life.” Actor Clea DuVall  [imdb.com] One of the qualities of many actors, musicians and […]

Albert Einstein on the numinous and the creative individual

Albert Einstein on the numinous and the creative individual

Albert Einstein wrote in an essay about the mystical or numinous aspects of reality: The most beautiful thing we can experience is the Mysterious — the knowledge of the existence of something unfathomable to us, the manifestation of the most profound reason coupled with the most brilliant beauty. I cannot imagine a God who rewards […]

Creative People and Mental Health: Self-Injury

Creative People and Mental Health: Self-Injury

“It’s like having a drink. But it’s quicker. You know how your brain shuts down from pain? The pain would be so bad, it would force my body to slow down, and I wouldn’t be as anxious. It made me calm.” That is a quote by Christina Ricci from a 1998 Rolling Stone interview. Studies […]

Emotional intelligence and/or high IQ

Emotional intelligence and/or high IQ

“Academic intelligence has little to do with emotional life… people with high IQs can be stunningly poor pilots of their private lives.” Daniel Goleman In her article Emotional Intelligence of the Gifted, Joanna Fletcher notes that Goleman gives examples of high IQ people “who are not achieving the heights they were destined for.” But she […]

Perfectionism and Brene Brown on The Gifts of Imperfection

Perfectionism and Brene Brown on The Gifts of Imperfection

Perfectionism can be an unhealthy way to try to satisfy distorted ego needs or defuse shame or low self-esteem, for example – but it is a simple name for what can be a complex set of drives and attitudes that can also fuel our pursuit of excellence and motivate social change. Hilary Swank: “The great […]

Louise Bourgeois: A Balance Between Extremes

Louise Bourgeois: A Balance Between Extremes

Her creative work can be “psychologically disturbing, sexually loaded and wickedly funny” according to an interview article, in which artist Louise Bourgeois talked about her emotional and social influences: “My work is a form of psychoanalysis. It is a way of coming to grips with my anxiety and fears. It is an attempt to be […]

Natalie Goldberg on accessing our energy in writing

Natalie Goldberg on accessing our energy in writing

“All the other rules of writing practice support that primary rule of keeping your hand moving. The goal is to allow the written word to connect with your original mind, to write down the first thought you flash on, before the second and third thoughts come in. “Because that’s where the energy is. That’s where […]