Fear and Communication

Interpersonal problems and recognition of facial emotions in healthy individuals

Click here for the article published by Frontiers in Psychiatry. Recognition of emotions in faces is important for successful social interaction. Results from previous research based on clinical samples suggest that difficulties in identifying threat-related or negative emotions can go along with interpersonal problems. The present study examined whether associations between interpersonal difficulties and emotion …

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How Storytelling Can Enhance Therapy for OCD

Click here for the article published by Psychology Today. Telling your story can be a powerful way for you and your family to respond to OCD. Continue reading … Disclaimer: The content of this article has not been checked or verified. Proceed at your own risk.

Basic Tenets of Separation Theory

Journal of Humanistic Psychology, Ahead of Print. This article outlines the basic tenets of separation theory, including the fantasy bond and the voice process. The fantasy bond is a unifying concept explaining how human beings seek security in fantasies of fusion in an attempt to heal the fracture related to interpersonal trauma compounded by death anxiety. Painful elements in parent–child interactions are incorporated in the form of a negative thought process or “voice,” creating a division in the personality between the self and the anti-self. My colleagues and I developed a methodology called “voice therapy” to expose and contend with people’s destructive attitudes and attacks on themselves. The article also describes the evolution of a group of more than 100 associates and friends who have lived in close proximity and shared their innermost feelings in an ongoing group experience for more than 40 years. These people contributed significantly to the evolution of separation theory. Together, we developed an implicit set of values based on understanding factors that hurt people in their psychological development. The article specifies the concepts learned from observing the reference population and delineates findings from research in the neurosciences, attachment theory, and terror management theory that validate the key concepts of separation theory.

An exploration of happiness, anxiety symptoms, and depressive symptoms among older adults during the coronavirus pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected millions of people worldwide. Because of the challenges associated with the pandemic, universal levels of happiness have likely depleted. We know little about how those with prior existing mental health concerns have responded to the pandemic. Using cross-sectional (study 1; N = 1,366) and longitudinal (study 2; N = 262) data, we utilized a stress and resilience perspective to explore mental health symptoms and happiness among older adults before and after the declaration of the pandemic. Results for both studies indicated higher levels of depression and anxiety symptoms predicted lower levels of happiness; however, for those who indicated higher levels of mental health symptoms, post-pandemic declaration happiness levels were higher than pre-pandemic happiness levels. Findings suggest that resilience may be learned throughout a lifetime, and that experiences from prior stressors may show benefits in responding to future ones, even among vulnerable populations.

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