10 Summer Depression Busters

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There are four distinct types of people when it comes to weather and mood, according to a study published in Emotion in 2011. Summer Lovers (better mood with warmer and sunnier weather) Unaffected (weak associations between weather and mood) Summer Haters (worse mood with warmer and sunnier weather) Rain Haters (particularly bad mood on rainy days) Although my mood […]

Do You Want to Participate in a Depression, Bipolar Disorder, or Pregnancy Research Study?

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While I was at the Johns Hopkins Mood Disorders Research and Education Symposium, I spoke with some of the researchers currently conducting studies for: major depression, bipolar disorder, and pregnancy. Here are more details and contact information if you are interested in participating. Being part of a study is a wonderful way of contributing toward better […]

Strength In Our Voices: Working Together to Reduce Stigma Associated With Mental Health

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We’ve come a little way in reducing the stigma that’s associated with mental illness, but not nearly far enough. Consider these results pulled from a public attitude survey in Tarrant County, Texas, conducted by the county’s Mental Health Connection and the University of North Texas in Denton to determine the community’s view of mental illness: More than 50 percent […]

10 Funny Movies That Will Help Lift Your Depression

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In his bestselling book Anatomy of an Illness, the late Saturday Review editor Norman Cousins tells how he overcame a debilitating illness (ankylosing spondylitis) by taking massive intravenous doses of Vitamin C and laughing while watching Candid Camera and various comic films. He maintains that his recovery was accelerated by self-induced bouts of laughter. Research indicates […]

5 Exercises to Nurture Self-Compassion

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According to Kristin Neff, Ph.D., self-compassion expert and associate professor of human development at the University of Texas in Austin, there is physiological data supporting the claim that self-compassionate people have better emotional coping skills. In her book Self-Compassion, she explains that researchers have measured cortisol levels and heart-rate variability among participants trained to have […]

10 Forms of Twisted Thinking

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David Burns, bestselling author of Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy, and Abraham Low, founder of Recovery, Inc., teach techniques to analyze negative thoughts or identify distorted thinking so that we can be more aware of them and to disarm them by teasing apart truth and fiction, attaching logic to the misguided stories we weave about ourselves. Since Low’s language […]

10 Ways to Beat Insomnia

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I have battled insomnia off and on for the last three years. At first I tried sleep medication (Lunesta and a few others) but they made me more depressed and anxious, so I have experimented with all kinds of natural remedies, many of them suggestions from fellow friends with sleep problems. Here are a few of them.   […]

9 Ways to Fight the Winter Blues

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People with Season Affective Disorder (SAD) or the clinical version of the winter blues aren’t the only ones who struggle with the shorter days, colder weather, and the general blah of the winter season. Less sunlight can affect our circadian rhythm, the body’s biological clock that governs certain brain wave activity and hormone production. If […]