In everyday conversation, we use the word “narcissist” to describe our ex-lovers and the jerks we encounter on the subway, but what does it really mean? On this episode of The Psychology Podcast, Scott has a fascinating discussion with Kristin Dombek about the “new narcissism”, in which everyone is a selfish narcissist– except ourselves. In this episode, we take a close look at how the label narcissism is used in psychology and popular culture, and how its increasing use may be a product of our modern times. We also discuss the guilt and fear associated with being labeled a narcissist, we talk about the differences between narcissism and psychopathy, and we cover an assortment of other topics including science journalism, how often we act out of character in a day, and the possibility of a “selfie apocalypse!”
In this raw and uncut episode, Mark Manson imparts his wisdom on the art of not giving a fuck. According to Manson, the key to living a good life is “not giving a fuck about more; it’s giving a fuck about less, giving a fuck about only what is true and immediate and important”. In this interview, we learn about this unique art form, and all of the counterintuitive ways that giving less fucks in your life actually frees you up to get more of what you truly value. You’ll learn how the acceptance of one’s negative experience can itself be a positive experience, the benefits of suffering, the futility of searching for happiness, the ways that emotions are overrated, and how to distinguish between good values and unproductive values. You’ll also be inspired to learn that you are not as special as you think you are, and that you are wrong about everything. As if that wasn’t motivating enough, you’ll also learn to accept your mundane existence, and the inevitability of death. This was a fun, wise, and at times, rather profound, interview. Note: In the spirit of Mark’s message, this entire interview is uncensored and unedited, which means that Scott shows extreme vulnerability in a way that he hasn’t before in past episodes. Fuck it.
Why are humanoid robots creepy? Why do ghosts always have unfinished business? Do all animals have a mind? Does our consciousness persist beyond our physical bodies? Might cryonics help us live forever?! These are some of the great mysteries of the human condition we address with Dr. Kurt Gray. It’s a fun and interesting philosophical episode, where we consider a range of topics related to having a mind and moral responsibility. Fair warning – this episode contains some adult content as we engage in some quirky and interesting moral considerations.
“Kurt Gray’s investigates the mysterious inner lives of animals, machines, and human beings. His research finds that minds are a matter of perception—how else can we make sense of people treating their cats like humans, and treating homeless people like objects? Such “mind perception” is immensely important because entities seen to have minds are afforded moral standing while those without minds are merely “things.” Mind perception can help explain why people believe in God, debates about gay marriage, and how good deeds make us stronger. Mind perception also forms the essence of morality, as judgments about right and wrong seem to hinge upon whether people see harm to other minds.” Blurb taken from kurtjgray.com
On this episode of the Psychology Podcast, we interview Pulitzer prize winning author Charles Duhigg about his latest book Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business. Charles has a real strength for communicating scientific research through fun/entertaining narratives, and elucidating how to be more effective in our everyday lives. We discuss research related to motivation, decision-making, teamwork, focus, prioritization and more – all via interesting anecdotes varying from championship poker, military training and airplane disasters. This interview features some very practical science and several harrowing stories. Enjoy and feel free to leave a review on iTunes – it lets us know what you enjoy and helps us refine our craft!
“Charles Duhigg is a Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative reporter for The New York Times and the author of The Power of Habit. He is a winner of the National Academies of Sciences, National Journalism, and George Polk awards. A graduate of Harvard Business School and Yale College, he lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two children.” Blurb taken from amazon.com
Dr. Joy Lawson Davis is a career educator with over 30 years of experience as a practitioner, scholar, author and consultant. Her current work, a topic that is near and dear to the show, involves increasing equity of access to gifted education programs. In this episode, we talk about the racial inequalities that plague our nation’s gifted education programs, and we discuss work being done to create equal opportunity. Other topics include: the current evaluation criteria for “giftedness” and how it can be improved, the importance of bringing all of the shareholders to the table for these discussions, the anti-intellectualism of our modern era, and several alternative ways of identifying giftedness in school. It’s a personally meaningful episode as Scott and Joy recount their own experiences with our non-inclusive education protocols. We hope you enjoy the show!
“In addition to local district and university experiences, Davis served for five years as the Virginia State Specialist for K-12 Gifted services. A graduate of the College of William & Mary Dr. Davis holds both master’s and doctorate degrees in Gifted Education. Davis has conducted workshops, been a long-term program consultant, and served as a keynote speaker and distinguished guest lecturer across the nation, in South Africa and the Caribbean. Diversity Education and Gifted Education are her areas of special expertise. As a highly sought after speaker and vocal advocate for increasing access and equity in gifted education, Davis is often called upon by other scholars, parent advocacy groups and other organizations to share and provide feedback when related matters come to the attention of the general public through mass media. Dr. Davis has published numerous articles, technical reports and book chapters. Dr. Davis’ award-winning book: ‘Bright,Talented & Black: a Guide for families of African American gifted learners’ is the first of its kind on the market to specifically address the advocacy needs of Black families raising gifted students. Davis is currently the Special Populations columnist for the NAGC publication: Teaching for High Potential and serves on the Gifted Child Today advisory board. Dr. Davis served a two year term as chair of the NAGC’s Diversity & Equity Committee and is now serving her first term as an at-large member of the NAGC Board of Directors. -Blurb taken from nagc.org
Sean Desai is the defensive quality control coach for the Chicago Bears and works with some of the world’s greatest athletic competitors. In this episode, we discuss his player development model, known as D.I.C.E., which emphasizes the importance of Direction, Instruction, Collaboration and Empowerment. We talk about what it’s like to work in the NFL, the nature of coach-player relationships, and Sean imparts some practical advice to individuals hoping to become high-level athletic coaches. Other topics include: evaluating potential, key characteristics of mental toughness, striving for greatness and more. Football fans, leaders, coaches and teachers will appreciate Sean’s insight into developing peak performance. Note: The audio quality is a bit rough toward the beginning (we’re sorry!), but smooths out, and we think the content is top notch!
“Sean Desai is in his third season as a defensive quality control coach for the Chicago Bears after being hired by the team on January 28, 2013. He is entering his tenth year as a coach at the NFL or collegiate levels. On the field, Desai will continue to work with the Bears linebackers on defense while also assisting the special teams coaches.” Sean also had his Ph.D. in educational Administration. Blurb taken from chicagobears.com
Four time bestselling author (and human guinea pig) A.J. Jacobs gets us laughing, and thinking, about the benefits of lifestyle experimentation. In this episode, we discuss A.J.’s courageous journey to learn everything about the world via reading the entire encyclopedia Britannica. A.J. talks about his book Drop Dead Healthy, where he spent months pursuing perfect physical health. We learn from his experiences following the bible (as literally as possible) for an entire year, and much more. Topics include: The importance of gratitude, what it’s like to win the lottery, the benefits of running electricity through the brain, and the differences between being psychotic, psychopathic and sociopathic. It’s an especially eclectic and playful episode that provides deep insight into what it means to live well. We hope you have as much fun listening to the episode as we had recording it. And feel free to leave a review on iTunes if you’re feeling compelled (it’s a big help to our cause and thank you in advance)!
A.J. Jacobs is an author, journalist, lecturer and human guinea pig. He has written four New York Times bestsellers that combine memoir, science, humor and a dash of self-help. He is also editor at large at Esquire magazine, a commentator on NPR and a columnist for Mental Floss magazine. His first book is called The Know-It-All: One Man’s Humble Quest to Become the Smartest Person in the World. After trying to improve his mind, he turned to his spirit. The Year of Living Biblically: One Man’s Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible tells of his attempt to follow the hundreds of rules in the Good Book. In 2012, Jacobs completed his mind-spirit-body self-improvement trinity with Drop Dead Healthy: One Man’s Humble Quest for Bodily Perfection. It is the tale of his quest to be as healthy as humanly possible, for which he revamped his diet, exercise regimen, sleep schedule, sex life, posture and more. He also published a collection of essays called My Life as an Experiment: One Man’s Humble Quest to Improve Himself. Jacobs’s next book will be about how we are all related. In addition to his books, Jacobs has written for The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, New York Magazine and Dental Economics magazine, one of the top five magazines about the financial side of tooth care. He has appeared on Oprah, The Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN, The Dr. Oz Show, Conan and The Colbert Report. He has given several TED talks, including ones about living biblically, creating a one-world family, and living healthily. He wonders if he fooled anyone with this third-person thing, or if everyone knows that he wrote this bio himself. –Blurb paraphrased from ajjacobs.com
Mentioned in this episode: The Psychology Podcast: “What is it like to be a psychopath?” with Dr. Kent Kiehl.
Who am I? Am I just a product of nature and/or nurture? What does it mean to live a life of meaning and happiness? On this episode of The Psychology Podcast, Dr. Brian Little helps us explore these existentially significant questions. We discuss whether or not the self is an illusion. We shed light on the effects of genes, societal influences and personal projects on personality. The conversation includes Brian’s experiences with influential psychologists such as George Kelly. Other topics include: the Big Five Model of personality, authentic living, identity change, and the good life. Brian has been described as a mix between Robin Williams and Albert Einstein, and we can see why after our discussion – it’s a fun and philosophically poignant episode featuring one of the legends in the field. Enjoy the show!
“Dr. Brian Little is an internationally acclaimed scholar and speaker in the field of personality and motivational psychology. He is a fellow of the Well-being Institute at Cambridge University, where he also lectures in the Department of Psychology and the Cambridge Judge Business School. He is a Distinguished Research Professor Emeritus at Carleton University. Little has taught at Carleton, McGill, Oxford, and Harvard Universities. He was elected as a “Favorite Professor” by the graduating classes of Harvard for three consecutive years. He lives in Cambridge, England, and Ottawa, Canada.” Blurb taken from amazon.com
On this episode of The Psychology Podcast, we interview bestselling author Ryan Holiday about the timeless life-advice he gleaned from researching his latest book: Ego Is The Enemy. Ryan shares insights from great individuals that eschewed the spotlight to put their higher goals above their desires for recognition. We talk about the importance of talking less and doing more. Our conversation covers the human drive to live a meaningful life and the dramatic shifts in worldview that takes place when astronauts view earth from outer space. We discuss the well-being benefits of integrating behavior with personal values and we commiserate over feeling existentially compelled to squeeze every last drop of productivity from each moment. It’s an interesting look at the foibles of egoism; anyone interested in contemplating what it means to live a good life would do well to give this episode a listen. Enjoy the show!
“RYAN HOLIDAY is a strategist and writer. He dropped out of college at nineteen to apprentice under Robert Greene, author of The 48 Laws of Power, and later served as the director of marketing for American Apparel. His company, Brass Check, has advised clients like Google, TASER, and Complex, as well as many prominent bestselling authors. Holiday has written four previous books, most recently The Obstacle Is the Way, which has been translated into seventeen languages and has a cult following among NFL coaches, world-class athletes, TV personalities, political leaders, and others around the world. He lives on a small ranch outside Austin, Texas.” –Blurb taken from http://www.amazon.com