Psych stuff round-up


Regular readers will know that, from time to time, I share links to recent articles, blog posts and videos that come under the broad title of ‘psych stuff’.

Right now, I’m trying very hard to avoid focusing on that word, you know…that word beginning with ‘pan’ and ending in ‘ic’ (anyone else notice that?) all the time. Yet it’s when times are tough that I turn to practical applications of psychology, seeking explanations about what’s going on in my head and others’, suggestions for handling it and simple steps to take.

Practise the ‘90-second rule’ to preserve peace in relationships
Ever been ‘triggered’ into a response that damaged a relationship? It could have been a small thing, like someone leaving their discarded clothes on the floor. Or, as Dr Robinson’s article says, a traffic jam or a printer paper jam (aaargh). Not only can we harm relationships personal and/or professional, we can harm ourselves. The ’90-second rule’ is a simple way to keep things healthy.

How to fix team conflict
Dr Paul Furey’s videos range from ’60-Second Solutions’ to hour-long webinars. His 2 Minute Model video on handling team conflict is well worth a watch.

Be your best self in times of crisis
I’ve been a fan of Susan David’s work since reading ‘Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life’. In this TED Q&A special, the Harvard Medical School psychologist offers ways to talk to your children about their emotions and to keep your own focus.

Get off ‘the path of negativity’
OK, now is probably not the time to be all ‘happy clappy’; nor is that what’s this article from Dr Paul Brewerton is suggesting. The ‘negativity bias’ is real and can hold us back. It’s had its uses in our evolution: being wary about resource loss /gain, exercising caution and thus keeping us safe. To manage our mindset and thrive, we need to acknowledge and learn the lessons of our negative bias, whilst knowing we still have choices, possibilities that can turn out well.

The best way to comfort someone
If you’ve been trying to comfort a friend or colleague who’s stressed or feeling down, how have your well-intentioned strategies been received? What psychologists call ‘low person-centred’ messages – “there are worse things that can happen”, “it’ll seem trivial tomorrow”, etc. may not be received as intended. Indeed, they might cause further upset, according to a study reported by BPS Research Digest. Not surprising then, that ‘high person-centred’ messages – “No wonder you feel upset”, “you’ve got good reasons to be feeling stressed” – that acknowledge the person and their feelings are much more likely to provide comfort.

Questioning our anxiety
Trust The School of Life to so succinctly explain our anxious mood – and what it may be masking. The video provides a ‘wonderfully simple tool’ to identify the root cause. Only then can we deal with it.


Dawn is the author of ‘The Feedback Book’ and ‘How to be Zoomly at work’


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