The power of spaced repetition

Many startups are offering learning products based on dubious claims. While the neuroscience of learning is pretty well understood in terms of underlying biological mechanisms, very few interventions have been proven to have a positive impact on these processes. In a sea of unproven strategies, spaced repetition is the strongest evidence-based learning technique. The concept …

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The science-based benefits of gratitude

When going through tough times, our automatic reaction is to complain and dwell on negative events, which can result in even more anxiety and unhappiness. The word gratitude comes from Latin gratus, which means ”pleasing” or “thankful” depending on the context. Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for the people, experiences, and things we have. While …

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Loneliness or solitude: the case for being alone

“I have to be alone very often. I’d be quite happy if I spent from Saturday night until Monday morning alone in my apartment. That’s how I refuel.” Audrey Hepburn. I remember, as a kid, spending hours alone in my bedroom, either reading or building imaginary worlds with toys. Because I have a sister and …

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The science of curiosity: why we keep asking “why”

It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education. Albert Einstein. Children have an incredibly inquisitive mind. “Why?” they keep asking. They explore new things for no other reason except that they just want to know. Researchers tried to figure out how often kids ask questions. Turns out, a lot: on average, children ask 107 …

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Build your own mental gym

At this point, most people are aware of the benefits of physical exercise. It doesn’t mean we actually act on it—$1.8 billion spent on unused gym memberships in the U.S. only—but we do know physical activity is good for us. What about mental exercise? Shouldn’t we train our brains, too? Building mental strength is not …

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