LISTENING TO ROCKS

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COPYRIGHT (C) 2017 BY LYNN JOHNSON, PH.D. PLEASE REPRINT AND SHARE this 870 word essay. My three year old granddaughter has a passion for collecting rocks. She is not particular. The rocks she picks up and takes home have no … Read More

Healing Rosie

posted in: Psychotherapy | 0

Rosie was a neglected and abused dog. She is a small-medium red dog, about thirty pounds. She had been starved, and at eight months hadn’t lived in a house or been house trained. My daughter adopted this needy dog. She … Read More

Do Statins Damage Mental Health?

I just read a new report. It turns out that drugs that lower cholesterol, including statins, damage memory. The article appears in JAMA, the Journal of the American Medical Association. The lead author is Brian Strom.| http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26054031 The findings are … Read More

Hobbies that help you Thrive

Eating a “rainbow diet” with lots of vegetables helps you recover from depression. Why is that? It is very likely that the rainbow diet reduces chronic inflammation. What will raise chronic inflammation? Eating prepared foods. Being worried and upset. Not … Read More

NEW VIEW ON ETHICS

We just finished an interesting interview with Dr. Julie Tilsen. We talked about the influence of post-modern constructionist thinking on ethics. She and Scott Miller are presenting a live workshop in Chicago on August 12. After hearing the interview you … Read More

GUT HEALTH and MENTAL HEALTH

When I started exploring lifestyle interventions a few years ago, I thought that interventions like coaching clients toward healthy eating and more physical exercise (among at least ten or twelve others!) were useful and interesting additions to my clinical skills. … Read More

NUTRITION AND MENTAL HEALTH

A PRESS RELEASE from Medical Express (http://medicalxpress.com/) from January 28 (but just showing up in my inbox!) is a press release from the University of Melbourne. That’s in Oz, of course. http://medicalxpress.com/news/2015-01-diet-nutrition-essential-mental-health.html “Diet and nutrition essential for mental health” publicizes … Read More

MEDITATION: CAN IT BE A STAND-ALONE TREATMENT?

In a new study just released, group mindfulness treatment was just as effective as individual cognitive therapy in treating depression.[1] As usual, the actual article is behind a paywall, but if you sign up for online library services through your … Read More

WHAT DOES ADAM GRANT MISS?

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Adam Grant is a wildly popular professor at Wharton, the business school. He is an organizational psychologist, interested in how people succeed in the workplace, and is the author of a recent book, Give and Take. I like it. I … Read More

USE FLOURISHING

Dr. Ed Diener and Dr. Robert Biswas-Diener offer the mental health community their FLOURISHING scale. It is a simple, eight item likkert-rating scale. There is no reversed-scored item in Ed’s work, and all thanks to him for that. The scale … Read More

CAN SELF HELP REALLY HELP?

Automatic happiness? Sounds like a science fiction story about cheery robots. But that’s our topic for today. It turns out that online help automates mental health. How can that be bad? Well, only research can tell us how good or … Read More

DEFEATING AN ANTIDEPRSSANT SIDE EFFECT

Women on antidepressants experience a diminishing of sexual desire.  In the STAR*D large, multi-site study on depression, 50% of women suffered sexual side effects from antidepressants. Thus, while antidepressants help patients recover from depression, they also reduce the desire for … Read More

SUCCESS WITH RESOLUTIONS

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I just uploaded a video I shot on January 1. How do we succeed with resolutions? I have some ideas about successful resolutions. There are differences between goals (or, resolutions) that give you success (HAPPINESS!) and those that don't. Happy … Read More

Embrace Love

posted in: Love, Resiliency, Thriving | 0

Rex still blesses my life. As I wrote about Rex’s sudden death, I was moved by the outpouring of encouraging and supportive comments. Many thanks to all you wonderful people. We buried Rex in the back yard. Our tradition frowns … Read More

EVEN MORE ON EXERCISE

posted in: Articles | 1

In a recent New York Times blog post, Gretchen Reynolds argues that self-talk is a key to a successful exercise plan.  Reporting on a British study, she points out that simply telling yourself, “This exercise feels good” can keep you … Read More

AN HERB FOR DEPRESSION?

Curcumin (the colorful component of turmeric, an Indian cooking herb) seems to work just as well as fluoxetine (Prozac ™) for treatment of unipolar depression. It is related to ginger, and grows wild and cultivated throughout Southeast Asia. Curry’s yellow … Read More

I WAS RIGHT ABOUT FOOD!

At this year’s American Psychiatric Association meeting in San Francisco, just completed, Dr Drew Ramsey, MD, talked about three large studies suggesting that what we eat does have a large impact on our moods. He reviewed Sanchez-Villega’s large study of … Read More

HANG IN THERE!

Recently a man asked me how to keep people working hard when they aren’t having much success. His business involves encouraging people to make sales of the company’s products.  His products are of high quality, but not everyone wants them. … Read More

GET STRONGER ON STRENGTHS

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What are your strengths? Are you using them each day? The new website, viame.org, offers the Values In Action (VIA) to both adults and youth, and their versions are only half as long as the versions you might have seen … Read More

THE NEIGHBORHOOD COW

In an interview with me, Dr. Charles Raison, University of Arizona School of Medicine, with a joint appointment in the School of Agriculture, discussed the shocking hypothesis that we are sicker because we are too clean. At the risk of … Read More

WHY EATING GRASS FED MEAT WILL SAVE THE PLANET

In his TED talk, the deliciously named Allan Savory described “desertification,” the process we see throughout the whole world in which formerly green areas are turning to desert. Some climates, such as Britain, get year-round rainfall and are always green. … Read More

TRACKING DEPRESSION AND INFLAMMATION

Dr. Ed Suarez at Duke has published another study on c-reactive protein and depression. You can read the announcement here: http://tinyurl.com/LynnJ-creactiveproteinstudy For years now we have been learning how depression appears to have a large component of inflammation. Dr Charles … Read More

CHILDREN AND EXERCISE

Here’s some interesting research announced a couple of days ago on Science Daily: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130307091552.htm#.UTo3CLq4o34.email Synopsis: Children who exercise and are exposed to stress have very little rise in cortisol, whereas sedentary couch potatoes have a rather nasty surge. LYNN SAYS: … Read More

PERSON PRAISE VS. PROCESS PRAISE

  The Journal of Experimental Psychology: General has scheduled an article for publication in a future issue of the journal: “On Feeding Those Hungry for Praise: Person Praise Backfires in Children With Low Self-Esteem.” The authors are Eddie Brummelman, Sander … Read More

MY FIRST YOUTUBE VIDEO

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I have thought for a while that I should offer YouTube videos on the topic of flourishing, creating and maintaining a high energy life, and enjoying real success. Thoughts aren’t enough, one must act. Over the weekend I decided I … Read More

WHAT KIND OF EXERCISE

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This year has been a giving rather than getting year, at least when it comes to skiing. I have been mostly spending my ski days with my four year-old granddaughters, on the beginner’s lift. That has a couple of components. … Read More

EVIL AND REDEMPTION

posted in: Articles | 22

Why is there evil? One might argue that evil is in the eye of the beholder. It is socially constructed. That is a singularly cruel interpretation, since it devalues and discounts the pain that a recipient of evil feels. When … Read More

Treating Thoughts as Real Objects

  Are thoughts real things? We think of thoughts as transient experiences that don’t have a real existence. They come, they go. But when we treat them as if they are real objects, we gain some control over them. Pablo … Read More

POSITIVE GOSSIP

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Homer Simpson once said, “If we aren’t supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?” Today we will talk about gossip. We aren’t supposed to gossip. If everyone knows gossiping is bad, why do people do it? The … Read More

When Customer Service Backfires

Harvard Business Review posted a video about customer service, called “When to disappoint your customers.” It is really about strategic trade-offs. It isn’t about my theme, customer service from the heart. Here’s the link: http://blogs.hbr.org/video/2012/07/when-to-disappoint-your-custom.html Frances Frei argues that you … Read More

DO SPECIFIC SYMPTOMS REQUIRE SPECIFIC TREATMENT

There are a fair number of therapists reading this blog. Rather, I should say of the very few people who read my rants, several are therapists. But enough sniveling. On a Positive Psychology discussion group the following question was posted: … Read More

DARK CHOCOLATE PREVENTS HEART ATTACKS

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A new article in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) describes the relationship between dark chocolate and heart attacks. The article is called “The effectiveness and cost effectiveness of dark chocolate consumption as prevention therapy in people at high risk of … Read More

THE MAGIC OF NOT EXPECTING MAGIC

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I shared an office at one time with David, another psychologist, and not his real name. His wife, Susan (not real name) would call from time to time and ask to talk to him. Sometimes he was between sessions, but … Read More

BOOKS WORTH READING

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I just finished Discovering God by Rodney Stark, Professor of Sociology at Baylor and an expert on the history of religion. I recommend it to the therapists I train because people’s feelings about religion and spirituality influence them, yet surveys … Read More

Are You Sure You Should Retire?

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A couple of years ago I had knee transplants. The old knees were extremely painful, and started locking up on me, so my back was against the wall. I bit the bullet and went under the knife. Well, actually, a … Read More

AN ENERGY TRANSFUSION

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I am looking for an energy transfusion. If you are like me, you are interested in keeping your energy up. We have seen our parents get old and it is not a pretty picture. All things considered, for the Baby … Read More

Baby Boomer Blood Sugar

posted in: Articles, Health | 0

I thought resveratrol (100 milligrams twice a day) was lowering my fasting blood glucose. I got a monitor, and found my morning blood sugar was in the high 90s. While that is still in the normal range, I am interested … Read More

DOES MEDITATION BORE YOU?

posted in: Articles | 28

My client agreed that she ought to be using Autogenic Training (AT) every day to support a feeling of peace and confidence. She agrees that feeling more peaceful would help. “But I get bored doing it,” she complains. We know … Read More

MEDITATION EFFECTS

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Richie Davidson is THE researcher about meditation. He and his colleagues have a new review article about how meditation grows brain capacity. It is here. The article is worth reading, although like all Davidson articles, some of it, I simply … Read More

JUST FOR FUN

posted in: Articles, Baby Boomers, Fun Stuff | 1

I write about revitalization. Maybe that makes me a shampoo, since the shampoo in my hotel room promises the same thing. I tried the shampoo. It doesn’t work. I do not feel revitalized. I like to research and try out … Read More

ITALY TRIP REPORT

posted in: Articles | 33

The bicycle is the most efficient form of transportation. We gathered with a group of friends to celebrate that fact and cycle through Tuscany hill towns and coastal roads last week. In the movie, Rocky Balboa, Rocky comes out of … Read More

LOVE THE HILLS

posted in: Baby Boomers | 0

A woman in our neighborhood rides 13 miles to work. My wife learned she was staying on the east side of town where there are lots of foothills. “Why don’t you ride a bit further west where you’d avoid all … Read More

DON’T RETIRE, FIND YOUR CALLING!

posted in: Baby Boomers | 19

In the TV series, The Closer, Brenda Lee Johnson moves from Washington, D.C to head up a new group of detectives in the Los Angeles Police Department. Brenda Lee is an outsider and faces suspicion and hostility, but wins over her … Read More

RECOMMENDED BOOK

posted in: Books | 0

Ken Pope recommends this book. He has good taste. He writes the following, and my comments are at the tail: Many of you know of Mark Vonnegut’s book from decades ago: *The Eden Express: A Memoir of Schizophrenia.* (Kurt was … Read More

ARE YOU STRONG ON STRENGTHS?

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HERE IS A NOTICE I AM PLEASED TO PASS ON. NOTE THAT YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE ARTICLE BY CLICKING ON THE LINK AT THE BOTTOM Taking Strengths Theory to the Next Level By Scott Asalone April 6, 2011 By Scott … Read More

MORE BAD NEWS ON ANTIDEPRESSANTS

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Here are a couple of recent news releases about medications in mental health. Not great news since the antidepressants do actually provide some good effects. But are patients being infomed about these side effects? You have a right to be … Read More