Psych Central

General Articles

9 Ways We Set Ourselves Up To Be Controlled in Relationships

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

Do you often feel like others are controlling? Or do you feel like the pressures of life are too much? Do you give your power away to others and feel helpless?

If so, this post will shed light on how you might be setting yourself up to feel controlled by others and life circumstances. Taking your power back can change everything!

emotionalpainMost of us are not conscious of how we give our power away. And that’s why articles like this one are so important.

If you’re in the subconscious habit of giving your power away, you’re mostly aware of the results – a sense of helplessness, frustration, powerlessness and lack of control in your life.

Waking up and seeing how you have allowed yourself to be controlled – walking right into it time and time again, is an amazing AHA experience.

Research: Women Love More but Still Feel Less Than

Friday, April 11th, 2014

woman low self-esteemHow do women who work so hard at relationships end up feeling less than? It’s a vicious cycle that is so important to understand. Read the evidence from a recent study, then learn how to cycle works to keep you down regardless of your efforts.

A new study conducted by Dr. Chris Bale of the University of Huddersfield has found that women who felt less desirable than their husbands work harder at keeping their spouse happy. Dr. Bale presented his findings at the British Psychological Society Annual Conference in April of 2013.

Happy Marriage Depends on the Husband’s Attitude

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

husband's attitudeA team of researchers from the University of Chicago has discovered that in longer marriages, the health and personality of the husband may be crucial to avoiding conflict and maintaining happiness.

The study, published in the Journal of Marriage and Family surveyed older adults who were participating in the National Social Life Health and Aging Project and compared the characteristics of husbands and wives between the ages of 63 and 90 years old whose marriages had lasted an average of 39 years.

The study discovered that when the husband showed a higher level of positivity, the wife in a couple reported less marital conflict.  Interestingly, positivity levels had no effect on their husbands’ reports of conflict.

According to Professor of Urban Sociology and director of the Center on Aging at NORC Linda J. Waite, the conflicts examined by the study primarily revolved around whether a spouse makes too many demands of their partner, perpetually criticizes the other, or gets on the others nerves.

Four Sources of Disease-Causing Psychological Inflammation

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

psychological inflammationMost in the conventional and alternative health communities accept that chronic, underlying inflammation is a root cause of degenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s/dementia, various forms of arthritis and even heart disease and cancer.

Results of medical research have been widely published. If you’re even mildly concerned about your health, then preventing chronic inflammation should be a priority in your life.

What causes inflammation? Most experts agree that lack of exercise and a toxic diet contribute to chronic inflammation, but there is another well-substantiated yet overlooked cause. I call it psychological inflammation.

What is Psychological Inflammation and How Does it Cause Disease?

Women’s Health Magazine published a reader-friendly definition of inflammation:

The Social Media Mood Virus Discovered

Sunday, March 23rd, 2014

social media moodsAre you emotionally affected by posts you read on social media? Is it having the effect that you want?

Read this interesting study that suggests social media posts, positive and negative, spread like a mood virus. Then, take steps to ensure you protect your own moods.

A recent study conducted by researchers from the University of California, Yale, and Facebook have found that moods can go viral, just like that funny cat video everyone’s been watching.

How to Be an Example to your Kids While Struggling with your Own Issues

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014
example to kids

Your kids know a lot more about how you feel than you think. Are you lying to them?

A lot of us parents think we need to project an image of perfection to our kids. No, we aren’t struggling. No, we don’t argue with our spouse. And, of course, we aren’t filled with anxiety!

Everything is fine.

We want to protect our kids. We don’t want to burden them with our adult issues. They should be allowed to just be kids, right?
Right. The problem is, we end up lying to them.

“Mommy? Are you ok?”

“Yes, Mommy is fine. You can go play.”

“But you look so sad, Mommy. Are you sad?”

“No, I’m really just fine. I’m not sad. Now run and play…”


I’ve done the same thing.

“Dad, are you and mom having an argument?”

“No, no….”

Oh the lies we tell our kids!

How Chronic Stress Causes Mental Health Disorders

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Chronic Stress Mental HealthResearchers from the University of California, Berkeley have found that people who suffer from chronic stress may experience long-term changes in their brain that makes them more prone to mood disorders and anxiety.

Associate professor of integrative biology Daniela Kaufer and a team of researchers have studied the hippocampus, which is the area of the brain that governs emotion and memory. They found that chronic stress causes the brain to generate fewer neurons and more myelin-producing cells than normal.

This results in more white matter in certain areas of the brain, disrupting the balance and timing of communication within the brain.

7 Amazing Benefits to Overcoming Self-Sabotage

Thursday, February 20th, 2014

freemeSelf-sabotage happens when you knowingly or unknowingly act as your own worst enemy.

When it happens, you often end up doing the exact opposite of what would make you happy and successful.

If you were to look under the surface, you’d discover that most failed goals, relationships, businesses and dreams have deeply subconscious roots in self-sabotage.

Benefits of Viewing Problems from a Distance

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014

view problems distanceIf you’re feeling depressed or going through a difficult time emotionally, it can be tough to know the best way to work through it. Researchers from the University of Michigan and the University of California, Berkley have found that distance may be the answer.

According to a series of studies conducted by psychologists Ethan Kross and Ozlem Ayduk, analyzing depressed feelings from a psychologically distanced perspective provides a number of benefits.

Spiritual Practice May Protect Against Depression: How to be Consistent

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

spiritualpracticeA new study published by JAMA Psychiatry suggests that participating in regular spiritual and religious practice may help protect against depression. Researchers believe this may be due to a thickening of the brain cortex that occurs with regular meditation or other religious and spiritual practices.

More research is necessary; however preliminary results of MRIs performed on 103 adults at varying risk for depression have shown a correlation between a thickening of the brain cortex and the personal importance of religious and spiritual practices.


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Recent Comments
  • MHMC: I can say from experience that this is very accurate. I never used to have low self-esteem (or so I thought),...
  • anonymiss: REMEMBER: “The study.. surveyed older adults who were participating in the National Social Life...
  • Suzanne Phillips, Psy.D., ABPP: Terrific blog – Taking responsibility on the part of each partner is key to a...
  • Janey: C. Your partner will resist your efforts and become even more negative or troubled....
  • Bert: There’s also the idea that if you shut off the (expletive, deleted) computer, and get a flip-phone...
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