Before takeoff, a flight attendant remarked about how high the plane was going to fly to get over a storm. As we taxied out for takeoff, I could not get the thought of being high up out of my head. I looked around for a way to get out. I told myself I could run to a door and jump out. Instead, I froze. I imagined - almost hallucinated - the terrible thing that is "going to" happen. I literally saw the plane spiraling down to my death. I was dizzy. I couldn't breathe. I thought I was having a heart attack.. … [Read more...] about Want to Stop Pandemic Claustrophobia, Anxiety, and Panic?
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Because researchers have only been actively studying non-motor cerebellar functions for about two decades, the cerebellum's role in decision-making and other cognitive functions remains mysterious and not well understood. The latest study of cerebellar MLIs in go/no-go decision-making tasks brings us one step closer to better understanding the often overlooked role the cerebellum plays in non-motor functions related to cognition. … [Read more...] about How the Cerebellum Optimizes Split-Second Decision Making
Actually, Costa Rica is not quite alone in having abandoned militarism, although it remains unique in that other demilitarized countries either benefit by protective military relationships with larger states, are barely “countries” at all (being closer to city-states or tiny, isolated islands), or have only recently proceeded down the path of demilitarization. Here are the world’s 26 demilitarized political entities as of 2013, sorted by location. In the Indian Ocean: Mauritius; in Central America and the Caribbean: Costa Rica, Dominica, Grenada, Haiti, Panama, St-Kitts and Nevis, St-Lucia, St-Vincent and the Grenadines; in Europe: Andorra, Iceland (a NATO member), Liechtenstein, Monaco, San Marino, Vatican City; in the Pacific Ocean: Cook Islands, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Niu, Palau, Solomon Islands, Samoa, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu. … [Read more...] about A Country Without a Military? You Bet!
“Hoaxers” are dangerous idiots. It’s understandable that when you can't see the enemy, it’s easy to discount or deny. None of us lived through the history of Germ Theory 150 years ago. Try to imagine a world with no knowledge of microorganisms and the danger some of them posed. Sure, everyone back then knew that people were getting sick and dying. But when scientists, such as Louis Pasteur, suggested that the disease was caused by tiny creatures, invisible to the naked eye, there was plenty of resistance [Cowan & Talaro, 2009]. When Pasteur suggested that good hygiene, like washing one's hands with soap and water, was a way to defeat this invisible enemy, people scoffed. … [Read more...] about Social Distancing: Why It Feels Like a Zombie Invasion Movie
On a larger scale, gratitude can help people cope with traumatic events. Years ago, my colleagues and I conducted some of the first studies on coping in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center (Fredrickson, Tugade, Waugh, & Larkin, 2003). We examined positive emotions that emerged in the wake of the tragedy. We found that emotions such as gratitude contributed to psychological resilience in survivors. People might have felt grateful to be alive or to know that their loved ones were safe, which in turn, resulted in lower levels of depression following the attacks. Related research on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) shows that people who have greater dispositional gratitude evidence lower symptoms of PTSD among high-risk populations, including police officers after Hurricane Katrina; Vietnam war veterans; as well as undergraduate women with trauma histories (Kashdan, Uswatte, & Julian, 2006; McCanlies, Mnatsakanova, Andrew, … [Read more...] about Finding Gratitude in Challenging Times