change

How people change

How people change [/psychAMA]

If you want to know how people change, read this post. Change your mind, change your mood, change your life. What follows combines two of my favorite subjects: the psychology of belief and the need for radical civility in political discourse. Doesn’t sound all that sexy, I admit. But understanding why we hate ambiguity is the key to understanding how people change – or don’t. It’s also key to how we got where we are in the state of political discourse.…

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The 31 days of December – Blog Challenge Time

A 31-day blog challenge? Now? As busy as you are, as much as you’re traveling, with all that’s going on? All good questions, along with the appended good, if rhetorical, one: Are you nuts? A friend once said, in response to me asking this question at an earlier time in my life: “Well, yes, you are kinda nuts. But I don’t see any reason to be judgmental about it.” Apt, I thought then, and still. So here’s the story: About…

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The Gift of Hope

It’s really hard to get into the holiday spirit these days while innundated with the siren call of greed, commercial profiteering, and everywhere the trappings of privilege. Ferguson. New York. Florida. Brown, Garner, Martin. Racism. Unequal pay for equal work; hell, let’s be honest, lesser pay for greater work. Rape culture. Controlled access to medicine that should be between a woman and her doctor. Sexism. Torture, for the love of all that is holy. What are we to make of a…

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Hey you!

Hey you! Yes, you! If you want to live and love and work bold, fulfilled, and BadAss, I’ve been busy building something for people just like you. If you’re stuck being one of the guys and want to be the man you always thought you could, or if you’re someone who loves one of those guys, or if you run a business that you want to take to the next level of awesome, come join us.

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Without a Net

I am terrified of heights. More precisely, I am deathly afraid of falling from a high place. Getting up on the roof is pretty easy and I like the view. Getting on the ladder to come down, on the other hand, has been known to freeze me in place for many minutes of terror, indecision, and cold sweat. Oddly, the flip side of this terror is that I’ve never been able to stand at a high place without an impulse…

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Sometimes You Have To Do What You Have To Do

Every once in a while a moment of raw communication happens in such a way that it becomes clear there is a choice to be made – either we will rise to the occasion and speak the truth of where we stand, even at the risk that it might offend or have unforeseen consequences, or we will miss that moment and live with regret. Last week, teaching my Abnormal Psychology class, I had such a moment. It was a class…

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Your Parents Thought You Too Were an Ungrateful Little Twerp

Like many on this eve of a new year, I am stunned at the frenetic pace of time’s passing, especially as I say goodbye to the year in which I turned 60. Reflecting from this vantage point on the breathtaking changes in the world order, I decided to respond to a question that was posed to me very recently by a reader: “Why do kids these days feel they have such a right of entitlement?” As it turns out I’ve…

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Maligning the future that just might save us

This morning on a friend’s Facebook page I saw posted a set of 11 rules of life, attributed to Bill Gates. I’d seen it before, but this time it caught my eye and I read them. I was amused at first, and then began to wonder if what made it appealing is Baby Boomer (read: “old fart,” of which I am one) cynicism that makes us sound just like our parents did about us. This isn’t the first time I’ve…

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2013: My “Year of Thinking Dangerously”

For 2013 I wish you promise, surprise, and danger. I suppose I should explain myself. Naming the year Last year I learned a new ritual – from my friends Daphne and Melissa – that I’ve adopted: “naming” the year. There is something that seems magical about naming the year. But as with most powerful mental tools, it’s important to remember to be conscious (I like that better than “careful”) what you wish for, because you’re very likely to get it.…

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