Shame and Guilt: Which One is Helpful, and How Can We Effectively Manage These Difficult Emotions?

What are shame and guilt? InĀ the fascinating and comprehensive book ‘Shame and Guilt’ by June Tangney and Ronda Dearing, they describe shame and guilt as universal human emotions that are functionally important at both an individual and a relationship level. Features shared by shame and guilt (Tangney & Dearing, 2002): Shame and guilt are both… Read More

Money and Happiness: How to spend for optimal benefits

Not all the best things in life are free I was on holidays in Queenstown, New Zealand earlier this year, and was amazed with how beautiful the scenery was. I was also amazed by how many experiences were on offer for people visiting or living there… On my first day in Queenstown, I walked into… Read More

How High is Your Physical Intelligence?

Physical intelligence is concerned with how different elements of our environment interact with our senses to influence or distort our perceptions, judgments, and emotions, which then influence our behaviours. In her excellent book ‘Sensation’, Thalma Lobel has neatly summarized all of the important findings that have accumulated so far in the emerging field of physical… Read More

Can Our Key Character Strengths Change Over Time?

In my earlier article onĀ Positive Psychology, I wrote about how happiness can be sought out and fostered by discovering our natural character strengths and virtues. The intent of the current article is to see if these strengths remain consistent over time, or if they can be actively changed. Is our character set in stone, or… Read More

Positive Psychology – The Secret to Optimal Well-being

For many years, Psychology, following in the footsteps of Medicine, was preoccupied with the alleviation of suffering. A worthy objective, but the treatments were focused on how to reduce depression or anxiety, not how to increase happiness. Does not feeling bad equate to the same thing as feeling good? If someone is no longer feeling… Read More

7 Life Lessons That We Can Learn From Hollywood Movies

  I was recently reading a book titled ‘Writing Screenplays that Sell’ by Michael Hauge, and was fascinated to see how psychologically informed screenwriters need to be in order to create engaging stories with meaningful plots and entertaining characters. Although Hollywood sometimes gets bad press for promoting materialistic and unrealistic goals for the audience, I… Read More

The Need to Belong

Historically Before the industrial revolution, humans lived in small groups that they were born into, and had minimal interaction outside these groups for the duration of their lives. Because humans were not great at surviving in the wild, we used our frontal lobes, communication skills and opposable thumbs to work together to build villages and… Read More