Distracted Much? What a Wandering Mind Says About Your Intelligence

I’ve always been a daydreamer by nature and I remember a number of teachers pointing it out as I was growing up, calling on me randomly or telling me to get my head out of the clouds. When called on, I usually produced the right answer, which was even more frustrating to any anal retentive teacher with an axe...

People in Supportive Relationships More Likely to Take Risks That Lead to Growth

Say you're offered an exciting job opportunity, one that would push you out of your comfort zone and possibly yield big rewards. Would you take it? The answer could hinge on what kind of relationship you have with your significant other. In a study published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, psychologists from Carnegie Mellon University found that people with...

Feeling Lonely? You Might be Self-Centered, says New Research

Loneliness is usually a difficult emotion to divulge. We want to project to others that we have a vibrant and fulfilling social life. Of course, we all get lonely sometimes, but some far more often than others. Usually, divulging that one is lonely elicits compassion, empathy, or even pity on the part of the listener. But perhaps they shouldn’t...

How Mindfulness Meditation Permanently Changes Your Brain

What's the Latest? While many studies have focused on how mindfulness meditation affects newcomers to the practice, a new study out of the University of Pittsburgh examined the brains of long-time meditators specifically when they were not meditating. "MRI scans show that after an eight-week course of mindfulness practice, the brain’s 'fight or flight' center, the amygdala, appears to shrink....

Why Having a Bad Job Is Worse for Your Health Than Having No Job at All

If you work in a low-paying job you hate, you are likely more chronically stressed out than if you were just unemployed. That's the conclusion of a new study from researchers at the University of Manchester. Focusing on how job transitions affect health, sociologists monitored 1116 unemployed British adults who didn't have a job in 2009-2010, and discovered that those...

How Does the Brain-Body Connection Affect Creativity?

Humans have a complicated relationship with walking. This wasn’t always so. British paleoanthropologist Mary Leakey identified marks of bipedalism dating back 3.7 million years in Tanzania—it’s an old endeavor indeed. The story of our uprightness was, for most of history, one of survival and thriving. Today the tale of our peculiar relationship to gravity is being written much differently. Bipedalism...

Negative Experiences in Childhood May Permanently Alter Your DNA

How much of our childhood experiences affect our long-term health? That’s a question a group of Northwestern University researchers, led by Thom McDade, PhD., attempted to answer recently. Turns out, certain negative experiences can permanently alter your DNA. These results of this study were published recently in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Scientists gathered genetic and...

Scientists Find Religion Triggers Same Area of Brain as Sex, Drugs and Love

Religious and spiritual experiences have profound effects on many people around the world. A new study from a team of neuroscientists shows that what they feel is caused by activating the brain’s reward circuits that control our ability to feel pleasure. It’s the part of the brain associated with sex, drugs, music as well as love. "We're just beginning to...

After Death, You’re Aware That You’ve Died, Say Scientists

Time of death is considered when a person has gone into cardiac arrest. This is the cessation of the electrical impulse that drive the heartbeat. As a result, the heart locks up. The moment the heart stops is considered time of death. But does death overtake our mind immediately afterward or does it slowly creep in? Some scientists have studied...

Being Busy Is Killing Our Ability to Think Creatively

The other day a friend mentioned that he’s looking forward to autonomous cars, as it will help lower the accident and fatality rates caused by distracted driving. True, was my initial reply, with a caveat: what we gain on the roads we lose in general attention. Having yet another place to be distracted does not add to our mental...

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