How to harness the power of self-affirmation

What are your values? Who are you? Such complex questions, and yet, few people spend enough time defining their sense of self. As a result, they answer with polite conversation ice-breakers, perhaps providing their name and their occupation. Beyond knowing yourself better, a strong sense of self has many benefits, including better performance and better …

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The benefits of mindfulness meditation

Our world is seldom at rest. It often feels like we have to run to keep up with life’s increasing pace, which can lead to an overwhelming feeling of stress and anxiety. This is where mindfulness meditation comes into the equation. Meditation does not only help in gaining focus and perspective, it also helps in …

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Status anxiety: when striving for success impacts our mental health

Bored and underpaid at work while colleagues seem to easily move up in their careers, jealous when a friend buys a new car, worried you cannot afford a product everyone around you is raving about… That feeling of being stuck while others around you appear successful is called status anxiety. Alain de Botton first introduced …

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How to improve your relationship with your phone

Gone are the days when phones were strictly used for voice communication. Your phone allows you to take photos, read the news, listen to music, track your exercise routine, follow your friend’s whereabouts, keep up with the life of celebrities, collect art, and buy virtually anything you can — or even cannot — afford. Today, …

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Fear of judgement: why we are afraid of being judged

If you have ever worried that poor performance in an evaluation will lead to a friend or colleague developing a negative opinion of you, then you are not alone. Fear of judgement by others is common. Athletes may fear judgement if they do not win a race, students may dread the disappointment of others upon …

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Fight or flight: understanding how the stress response works

Imagine standing on stage in front of a few hundred people. Your heart is beating fast, your hands are sweaty, and you can feel a knot in your stomach. This is the fight-or-flight response at play. While it may be helpful in dangerous situations, such as an encounter with a wild or angry animal or …

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Self-handicapping: when we avoid effort to protect our self-esteem

Humans are very good at getting in their own way. We make our lives more challenging than they need to be, often without realizing it. Why do we place these hurdles in our way? What can we do to address our self-handicapping behaviors? Self-handicapping as an insurance policy In short, self-handicapping is an insurance policy …

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The psychology of regret: how inaction affects our sense of self

We all have experienced regret, perhaps after making a hurtful comment or acting in a way that later turns out to be harmful. Regret is a feeling of sadness, repentance, or disappointment at something that you have done, or failed to do. Psychologists Shai Davidai and Tom Gilovich have investigated the psychology of regret, illuminating a …

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Emotional exhaustion: a leading indicator of burnout

The modern world operates in such a way that we all face a torrent of stressors throughout the day, at work and outside of work. Unfortunately, this means some of us live in a constant state of stress, which can lead to emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion. Emotional exhaustion is one of the most invisible …

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The psychology of revenge bedtime procrastination

Have you ever come home after a long day at work, with a narrow window of time to eat, shower, and go to bed, but decided to carve out some leisure time at the expense of your sleep? This is called “revenge bedtime procrastination”, and it can be extremely harmful to your physical and mental …

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