Creativity must represent something different, new, or innovative. It has to be different and also be appropriate to the task at hand. The first chapter of the book deals with the Four-Criterion Construct of Creativity, which attempts to integrate both Western and Eastern conceptions of creativity. This is followed by a chapter which addresses how creativity operates on individual and social/environmental levels, and the effects and outcomes of the creative mind. Chapter 3 discusses the structure of creativity. A key work on creative domains is that of Carson, Peterson, and Higgins, who devised the creativity achievement questionnaire (CAQ) to assess 10 domains. The fourth chapter discusses measures of creativity and divergent thinking tests, Torrance Tests, Evaluation of Potential Creativity (EPOC) and Finke Creative Invention Task. Some popular personality measures use different theories, such as Eysenck’s Personality Questionnaire, which looks at extraversion, neuroticism and psychoticism. Chapter 6 focuses on a key issue, intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation and their relationship to creativity. While the seventh chapter deals with the relationship between creativity and intelligence, the eighth chapter describes three ’classic’ studies of creativity and mental illness which focus on the connection between bipolar disorder and creativity, usage of structured interviews and utilization of historiometric technique. One school admissions area that already uses creativity is gifted admissions—which students are chosen to enter gifted classes, programs, or after-school activities. The book also talks about creative perceptions and dwells upon the question whether creativity is good or bad.
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As everyone knows, true creativity comes from simple formulas and the memorization of data. This chapter focuses on divergent thinking tests, which are still the most common way that creativity is measured. Guilford derived the core ideas behind divergent thinking as well as many popular measures. The people who score the Torrance Tests are specifically trained to distinguish responses that are truly original from those that are just bizarre. There are other tests that measure creativity, but most are either a variation on divergent thinking or use some type of raters. For example, the Evaluation of Potential Creativity (EPOC) has begun to be used in some studies and may be promising, but is still largely rooted in a mix of divergent thinking scoring and raters. Another test is the Finke Creative Invention Task, which is clever but also requires raters for scoring.
The Big Five, which this chapter discusses in more detail, are extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness to experience. Each of these five factors represents a continuum of behavior, traits, and inclinations. There are some popular personality measures that use different theories, such as Eysenck’s Personality Questionnaire, which looks at extraversion and neuroticism as well as psychoticism. The personality factor most associated with creativity is openness to experience. Indeed, one way that researchers study creativity is by giving creative personality tests. Being open to new experiences may also help creative people be more productive. King found that people who were creative and high on openness to experience were more likely to report creative accomplishments. DeYoung and S. B. Kaufman, of course, are not the only people to blend or split different factors of personality to present new models. Fürst, Ghisletta, and Lubart suggest three factors: plasticity, divergence, and convergence.
This chapter explores three ’classic’ studies of creativity and mental illness. The first is Jamison whose focus is on the connection between bipolar disorder and creativity. The second is Andreasen, who used structured interviews to analyze 30 creative writers, 30 matched controls, and first-degree relatives of each group. The writers had a higher rate of mental illness, with a particular tendency toward bipolar and other affective disorders. The third major work is Ludwig, who utilized the historiometric technique. All three studies have come under serious criticism. Many of the studies of Big-C creators are historiometric, akin to Ludwig’s work. Some such studies claim that eminent creators show higher rates of mental illness. A much more common approach is to look at everyday people and give them measures of creativity and mental health. Typically, researchers look at what are called subclinical disorders—in other words, they’re not clinically significant.
One school admissions area that already uses creativity is gifted admissions—which students are chosen to enter gifted classes, programs, or after-school activities. Both education and business play great lip service to creativity. Puccio and Cabra review the literature on creativity and organizations and do a nice job of highlighting how every couple of years, a new report from industry emphasizes the importance of creativity. It is important to note that there is a large inconsistency between gender differences on creativity tests and actual creative accomplishment. Although gender differences on creativity tests are minor or nonexistent, differences in real-world creative accomplishment are large and significant. This chapter shows how creativity can play a role in admissions and hiring. Hiring measures tend to have better validity, even the general mental ability (GMA) measures; even if minorities score lower, the accuracy of prediction is consistent by ethnicity.
Creative people are also often seen as being outsiders and eccentric. Sen and Sharma’s examination of creativity beliefs in India tested beliefs about the Four P’s and found that creativity was more likely to be described as a holistic essence of an individual, and less likely to be focused on the product or process. Romo and Alfonso studied Spanish painters and found that one of the implicit theories that the painters held about creativity involved the role of psychological disorders. Plucker and Dana found that past histories of alcohol, marijuana, and tobacco usage were not correlated with creative achievements; familial drug and alcohol use also was not significantly associated with creative accomplishments or creative personality attributes. Humphrey, McKay, Primi, and Kaufman did find that illegal drug use predicted self-reported creative behaviors even when openness to experience was controlled.
Depression is sometimes referred to as the common cold of psy-chopathology. Consistent with this aphorism, epidemiological studies demonstrate that depressive disorders are indeed rather common across the life span. Given the importance of the social relationships and context to understanding depression, it seems likely that culturally informed and diverse research will yield important findings about those critical components of human cognition, emotion, and social relationships that underlie risk for depression, as well as those that serve to aid in recovery from these disorders. Most researchers believe it is unlikely there is a direct effect of hormones on depression, but rather that they indirectly increase risk via any one of several mechanisms, including: the effects of hormones on brain development, the development of secondary gender characteristics that are generated by these hormones, or the hormonal changes that occur during the pubertal transition may interact with life events and the social context.
Depressive disorders are characterized by etiological heterogeneity, which means that many diverse causal factors or causal pathways can lead to the same clinical outcomes. Women are at higher risk for depressive episodes beginning at early adolescence and then throughout the life span. Unipolar depressive disorders can onset at any point in the life span, but are most prevalent in late adolescence through early to mid-adulthood. Bipolar disorder (BD)s generally onset before mid-adulthood; new cases are rare thereafter. More severe cases of unipolar and bipolar disorders are characterized by a chronic/recurrent course. Both unipolar and bipolar disorders are commonly comorbid with other forms of psychopathology; overall severity and poorer outcome over time is associated with comorbidity. If gender differences are of interest, the effects of potential etiological factors are measured in persons of both genders and their associations with depressive disorders are statistically compared across genders.
One of the best known psychologists of the 20th century was Jean Piaget. The memory he described was from when he was about 2 years old, a kidnapping attempt in which his nurse tried to protect him. According to the storehouse metaphor, memory is kind of a warehouse. When one remembers an event from one’s life, one looks through this warehouse. Remembering a past event is also a kind of simulation, a simulation of what happened in the past, rather than a veridical reproduction of the past. In fact, our best understanding is that brains are massively parallel simulation devices. Constructive theories deal with filling in gaps at encoding as the event transpires, whereas reconstructive theories deal with filling in gaps at retrieval as one tries to remember the event. When thinking about memory illusions it is important to make a similar distinction.
This chapter describes many of the theories that involve taxonomies. Most taxonomies of love begin in the same place: The language of love is examined, whether through an examination of film, literature, music, or firsthand accounts of people about their love life. The three primary love styles are eros, storge, and ludus. Eros is a passionate kind of love that is characterized by strong emotions and intense physical longing for the loved one. With storge, should the lovers break up, there is a greater chance than with other love styles that they remain friends. Ludus commonly is displayed by people who prefer to remain single and who see love as a game of conquest and numbers. A pragmatic lover hesitates to commit to a relationship until he or she feels confident of finding the right partner. The different love styles also correlate with some other personality traits.
This chapter focuses on an area that has been at the center of the debate between the approaches: processing ambiguous words and sentences. Interestingly, an important factor for ambiguity resolution appears to be the frequency of the different meanings of the ambiguous words. Subordinate- bias effect is as follows: in a neutral, nonbiasing context, words that are balanced cause longer reading times than words that are either unbalanced or unambiguous. Different languages impose different rules about how grammatical categories may be combined. In the garden path model, sentence processing happens in two stages: an initial structure building stage in which the only information that is used is syntactic, and then a second stage in which the structure is checked against semantic and pragmatic information. Constraint-based models take a very different approach to how sentences are initially parsed and how mistakes are sometimes made.
The researchers were specifically interested in whether they would get more incorrect responses depending on the type of sentence. From a certain perspective, passive sentences are more complicated than active sentences and so perhaps it is the case that passives are more difficult simply because they are more complicated. It appears that the important difference between subject cleft and actives on one hand, and passives on the other, is that the order of the roles is reversed between them: in active sentences, the agent comes first. Indeed, there is a growing body of evidence that languages allow English speakers to structure their utterances in a way that can flag certain parts of the sentence as particularly important or worthy of special attention. Recently, psycholinguists have been interested, too, in how information structure influences language processing.
This chapter links facets of personality, and other individual differences among people, to aspects of their sense of humor, including the way that they use comedy in their lives and the kinds of jokes they generate and appreciate. The study of personality back in the 1940s had grown quite convoluted. It had started in ancient times, when Hippocrates, of the legendary oath, proposed four temperaments. He thought that personality arose from different proportions of fluids in the body, creating a popular link between personality and physiology. By the late 1800s, Sir Francis Galton, brilliant half-cousin of Charles Darwin and noted polymath, reasoned that any important aspect of personality ought to make it into the language. He fashioned a taxonomy based on a dictionary. Humor and creativity relate to each other in curious ways. But both are also correlated with extraversion and intelligence.Source:
The study of the properties of language can be divided up into roughly five, somewhat overlapping categories: sound system, word structure, sentence structure, meaning, and real-world use. In spoken languages, segments are sounds—each language has a set of sounds that are produced by changing the positions of various parts of the vocal tract. The sound system of language is actually studied in two main parts: phonetics, phonology. Phonemes can be combined to make words, and words themselves have an internal structure and can even be ambiguous based on this structure. Syntax is the study of how sentences are formed. There are two noun phrases (NPs) in the sentence—the artist and a paintbrush. The field of semantics is concerned with meaning in language and can be divided into two major parts: lexical and propositional.
Coverage of obesity in the popular press has reached a fever pitch in recent years. By far, the most common definition of obesity uses the body mass index (BMI) to determine who is overweight or obese. A person's BMI is a ratio of his or her weight to height. Many times BMI is criticized for the false positives, where very muscular people are deemed to be obese despite ultralow body fat levels. Waist circumference or waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) measures something called “abdominal or central obesity”, a condition that is closely related to negative health outcomes such as cardiovascular disease. The costs to society of obesity and related health issues are tremendous. Women, ethnic and racial subgroups, and those of low socioeconomic status (SES) all display higher rates of obesity than the overall population. Obesity is much more common in certain racial and ethnic subpopulations, as compared with Caucasian Americans.
The idea of the mad genius persisted all the way to modern times and was even promulgated in scientific circles. Not only was genius mad, but it was associated with criminality and genetic degeneration. The empirical research relevant to the mad-genius issue uses three major methods: the historiometric, the psychometric and the psychiatric. The historical record is replete with putative exemplars of mad genius. The mental illness adopts a more subtle but still pernicious guise-alcoholism. In fact, it sometimes appears that alcoholism is one of the necessities of literary genius. Psychopathology can be found in other forms of genius besides creative genius. Of the available pathologies, depression seems to be the most frequent, along with its correlates of suicide and alcoholism or drug abuse. Family lineages that have higher than average rates of psychopathology will also feature higher than average rates of genius.Source:
This chapter talks about questions related to how speakers and hearers influence each other. It looks at research on dialogue, and especially how a dialogue context influences speakers. Speakers have an impact on their listeners. The goal of a dialogue is successful communication and so it would make sense that a speaker would pay careful attention to the needs of a listener and do things like avoid ambiguity and package information in a way that flags particular information as important or new to the listener. Ambiguity may be avoided depending on the speaker’s choice of words and so a natural question is whether, and when, speakers appear to avoid ambiguous language. In terms of pronunciation, speakers reduce articulation and intelligibility over the course of a dialogue. There are some constraints and preferences on how to interpret pronouns and other coreferring expressions that appear to be structural or syntactic in nature.
Unlike laypeople, psychologists believe people can measure personality using reliable scientific tools. Indeed, the whole field of psychometrics is dedicated to measuring differences between people in various psychological concepts, including personality. Personality assessment combines a variety of theories and methods, including common sense, probability theory and statistical testing. Life record data (L-data) deals with a person’s life history or biographical information. The main task of personality psychologists is to demonstrate that the assessment methods they use are, in fact, measuring specific personality traits, and that they are accurately doing so. In recent years, there has been an increased interest in alternative methods for objectively assessing personality. One compelling example is the Implicit Association Test (IAT). An aim of psychophysiological measurement is to elucidate the biological processes underlying factor-analytically derived dimensions of personality. There are several scientific investigations of the reliability and validity of astrology as a tool to assess personality.
This chapter presents the most salient psychological theories of personality. Personality is a core determinant of individual differences in everyday behaviors. The chapter discusses the difference between what psychologists broadly refer to as normal and what they regard as abnormal or clinical/mental illness. If one looks for an Elvis among personality psychologists, Sigmund Freud would be the one. During the mid-20th century, behaviorism emerged as a dominant paradigm for understanding human behavior, including personality. Although the social cognitive theory of personality has its origins in the radical behaviorist tradition, it emerged in clear opposition to it. According to the lexical hypothesis, historically, the most important and socially relevant behaviors that people display will eventually become encoded into language. Indeed, personality disorders are defined as long-standing, pervasive, and inflexible patterns of behavior and inner experience that deviate from the expectations of a person’s culture.
This chapter differentiates intelligence and related constructs such as creativity and intellectual giftedness, which helps people to better understand each construct. Sternberg proposed a way to classify the various approaches to studying the intelligence-creativity relationship. Guilford’s Structure of the Intellect (SOI) model is probably the most explicit, with divergent thinking specifically identified as one of his five cognitive operations. The relationship between intelligence and giftedness has also received substantial attention. Every gifted education program has a formal assessment procedure to identify potential participants, and creativity assessments are often included in the battery of measures in these identification systems. The Marland Definition suggests that giftedness and talent are manifest in six areas: general intellectual ability, specific academic aptitude, creative or productive thinking, leadership ability, visual and performing arts, and psychomotor ability. It has been extremely influential and is still used by many school districts in their identification of talented students.
This chapter shows an overview of the techniques that are used to measure language processing. It shows at the things psycholinguists do when designing experiments in order to ensure that their results are valid. Online measures include any measure considered to give information about language processing as it happens. The prototypical off-line measure is the questionnaire—literally asking people for their judgments about what they’ve just encountered. In fact, all kinds of data can be collected from questionnaire studies. The button press task is perhaps the most versatile of all the things that people can do to collect data involving response times. The conscious responses discussed about here are vocal response. Like eye-tracking, event-related brain potentials (ERPs) help to understand the technique if people know a bit about the response measured—in this case, the brain. In many ways, functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) can be considered the complement to ERPs.
This chapter discusses the social psychology of humor, starting with a walk through how the presence of other people can make things seem funnier. It shows how humor can have a positive or a negative tone and it can focus on ourselves or on those around us. Self-enhancing humor makes stress tolerable. It can keep folks from viewing minor annoyances as unbearable disasters. The chapter sketches how humor can function to maintain the status quo. People who report using self-enhancing humor show less anxiety, neuroticism, and depression; better psychological well-being and self-esteem, and more extraversion, optimism, and openness to experience. When it comes to hierarchies, getting a feel for who’s cracking jokes and laughing can communicate who’s top dog. The chapter finally focuses on gender differences, and then sees how humor contributes to developing friendships, finding a date, and maintaining an intimate relationship.Source:
The genetic causes of obesity are often separated into to two types: monogenic and polygenic. Monogenic obesity refers to forms of obesity that result from very rare mutations in single genes. In the case of polygenic obesity, any single gene susceptibility would have a very small effect, but taken together, the cumulative effect of several susceptibilities leads to a substantially increased risk of obesity. There are many other pieces of compelling evidence for the environmental causes of obesity. The prevalence of obesity in the United States has been the highest in the world, though the prevalence of obesity is rising in both developed and developing nations around the globe as they adopt “Western” lifestyles of decreased physical activity and higher consumption of cheap, calorie-dense foods. There is another theory that “genetic drift” and “predation release” caused obesity to simply become neutral to our ancestors, as opposed to detrimental.
So here the authors are, caught between two worldviews. In one camp, they have educators and academics, attempting to overthrow the “old guard”—those of them who define giftedness through the narrow lens of IQ tests. They are hoping to establish a raison d’etre for gifted education—a field with a wobbly foundation. In the other camp, the authors have parents and the psychologists who specialize in working with the gifted, railing against the externalizing of giftedness. They want the inner world of the gifted to be recognized and appreciated. Controversy has dogged the study of giftedness since its inception, and is likely to continue into the foreseeable future. Multiple views will somehow have to learn to coexist. The psychology of giftedness is a fledgling. An impressive number of people think they know more about the gifted than one does and they are delighted to share their opinions.Source:
This chapter provides some questions and answers so that people can see for themselves. Most theories of love predict that, as time goes on, the passion in a relationship will begin to falter. According to the triangular theory of love, passion is the quickest component of a relationship to develop but also the quickest to die down. If they always need the thrill of the early days of a relationship, they may find themselves flitting from one relationship to the next without ever experiencing any deeper satisfaction. A mismatch of stories is not as obvious as disagreement over political beliefs, the desire to have children, or religious affiliation, but it can be just as challenging to a relationship. When people end serious relationships, they often go through a period in which they are just not ready to enter a new relationship.
This book presents the best short introduction to genius to be found. It is a valuable resource for all students of psychology and anyone interested in the field. The book examines the many definitions of “genius”, and the multiple domains in which it appears, including art, science, music, business, literature, and the media. The term genius is peculiar. It can be precisely defined or loosely defined. It can be applied to a diversity of phenomena or confined to just one or two. It all depends on how you use the term. The tremendous range in usage reflects the fact that genius is both a humanistic concept with a long history and a scientific concept with a much shorter history. There are two principal ways to assess degrees of genius. One is historiometric, and the other is psychometric. Whatever the actual association between historiometric and psychometric genius, we have a strong inclination to associate the two concepts. This connection was demonstrated in a recent survey of college students at both U.S. and Canadian universities. The book also examines three alternative positions on the nature of cognitive ability: unified intellect, diverse intellects and hierarchical intellect. Whether intelligence is unified or multiple, all budding geniuses must go through some sort of apprenticeship period in which they acquire the expertise that will enable them to make original and exemplary contributions to their chosen domain of achievement. The book further explains what psychologists have said about problem-solving research in cognitive psychology.
Psycholinguist is someone who studies phenomena in the intersection of linguistics and psychology. The whole endeavor of psycholinguistics often finds a home in the broader research field of cognitive science—an interdisciplinary field that addresses the difficult question of how animals, people, and even computers think. The centrality of language in the daily lives means that any disruption to the ability to use it may be keenly felt—the worse the disruption, the more devastating the impact. From the beginning of psychology, there has been an interest in language. In psychology, behaviorism was a movement in which the study of mental states was more or less rejected, and the idea that one could account for human behavior in terms of mental states or representation was discounted. This book covers a number of topics that are very much relevant in current psycholinguistics, including child language acquisition, sign language, language perception, and grammatical structure.
Most school-based interventions aimed at preventing obesity have focused on a few key areas: improving the food offered in school, increasing opportunities for physical activity, health and nutrition education curricula, and screening youth for overweight and obesity. Positive effects on physical activity are encouraging because developing good habits early may help prevent obesity later in life. Many obesity prevention programs have looked at adding health, nutrition, and physical education courses to the school day. One initiative that has been proposed is to screen children and teens for obesity in schools, similar to the hearing and vision screenings that already take place. Some schools also collect body mass index (BMI) data on students for surveillance purposes, where information is anonymous and used to track whether certain school policies are effective in reducing rates of obesity for the school, district, or state as a whole.
To truly understand how important and central memory is to us, it is important to understand what life is like for people who experience memory loss, or amnesia. This chapter examines the amnestic syndrome, which has been widely studied and the knowledge of which has significantly influenced theories of memory. The abilities and nonabilities of those with amnestic syndrome demonstrate that there are multiple independent systems of memory. The chapter also examines two controversial diagnoses, the main feature of which is memory loss dissociative identity disorder (DID) and psychogenic or dissociative amnesia. It discusses a form of memory loss that does not fit the technical definition of amnesia because it eventually affects not just memory but all cognition: Alzheimer’s disease (AD). AD is common among older adults and demonstrates how a worsening loss of memory and cognition can lead to a complete disruption of everyday life.
In our success-oriented culture, optimal development of giftedness often is construed as fulfilling one’s potential for greatness. In humanistic psychology, optimal development has been conceptualized differently. Self-realization can be understood in terms of Maslow’s self-actualization, Dabrowski’s secondary integration, Jung’s individuation, or other theoretical perspectives of human development. The goals of inner development involve deepening the personality, overcoming conflicts, and actualizing one’s potential for becoming one’s best self. Many parents of the gifted complain that their children are the ones exerting the pressure. Their speed of learning and quest for knowledge often exceed their parents’ comfort level. The purpose of parent guidance is to foster “optimal development” through early intervention and prevention of social and emotional problems. Assessment can act as a prelude to family therapy. Family therapy usually involves a commitment to several successive sessions to deal with family interactions.Source:
This chapter explores how a love researcher goes from having a conception or even a theory of love to actually constructing a love scale. A love scale provides a way to test the validity of a theory. A love scale enables couples to assess one aspect of their compatibility. A love scale provides individuals and couples an opportunity to enhance their love relationships. The one important thing to remember is that as measuring instruments love scales are far from perfect. Love scales are no different from scales for measuring intelligence or personality. An investigator might simultaneously measure intimacy with the intimacy subscale of the Triangular Love Scale and observe a couple in interaction, looking for behaviors signifying trust, caring, compassion, and communication. No scientist today believes that it is possible to capture the entire phenomenon of love through scientific study or through scales that are geared to measure love.
This chapter focuses on the whole life span of a relationship. It reviews some of the kinds of love and discusses how researchers understand the temporal course of those kinds of love. The chapter considers the effects of cohabitation on couples and what happens as these couples move on to marriage. It also discusses mechanisms that help or hinder couples in the maintenance of their relationships. The chapter examines the usual means of ending relationships: breakup and sometimes divorce. Compassionate love has been called “pure love”, “selfless love”, and “altruistic love”, as well as many other things. It features prominently in religion as well as in literature about love, and often can be found in caregiving relationships. A negative relationship also existed between cohabitation and marital quality. Edenfield and colleagues conducted a study that relates these relationship maintenance strategies to adult attachment styles.
This chapter discusses the implications of using personality inventories in the context of identifying bad or problematic traits, such as narcissism, machiavellianism, and psychopathy. Evolutionary theory states that behaviors, traits, and genetic materials survive only if they are adaptive to the environment the organism finds itself in. As evidence has revealed, conduct disorder in children is a good marker for predicting psychopathy and antisocial outcomes in later years. Although personality tests are rarely used for the purpose of educational selection, scores on these tests correlate with several educational performance outcomes. The chapter examines current trends in online personality profiling in the context of consumer behavior. The market for online dating is huge and growing and an increasing number of single individuals subscribe to these services in order to find their ideal partners. Faking is an important criticism as many organizations will ask new applicants to undergo a personality assessment.
Intelligence is a hypothesized quality whose ontology, etiology, and scale must be inferred through indirect means. Personal definitions of intelligence are not the same as constructs of intelligence. Psychological constructs are highly technical, painstakingly crafted, and subjected to rigorous theoretical examination and empirical testing. Intellectual abilities are organized at a general level into two general intelligences, viz., fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence. Intelligence is the sum total of all cognitive processes. It entails planning, coding of information and attention, as well as arousal. Given his personal history and society’s attitudes toward heredity, that Galton concluded that the development of genius, must be understood in terms of hereditary processes. The chapter concludes with two tables presenting definitions of intelligence provided by several prominent historical and living intelligence theorists. They convince readers that human intelligence is a fascinating and complex subject, and to provide a foreshadowing of many of the essential issues.
This chapter suggests some new directions that personality research is, or should be, taking as well as the future agenda of this research. In contrast, personality psychology provides us with a solid evidence base that people can lean on when searching for answers about human nature. Personality refers to the stable and consistent patterns we observe in how people behave, feel, and think. Associations between personality and intelligence have been found on the measurement level and hypothesized at a conceptual level. It is supposedly human nature not to trust humankind to provide the unselfish responses in questionnaires, or to possess an adequate level of self-awareness. Admittedly, this trend has been changing. An increasing number of organizations are using self-report personality measures and even laypeople seem to accept the notion of questionnaires more kindly than before.
This book explores a set of key topics that have shaped research and given us a much better understanding of how language processing works. The study of language involves examining sounds, structure, and meaning, and the book covers the aspects of language in each of these areas that are most relevant to psycholinguistics. The book then covers relatively low-tech methods that simply involve pencil and paper as well as very high-tech methods like functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that use advanced technology to determine brain activity in response to language and discusses a topic that has dominated the field for over two decades how people handle ambiguity in language. It describes how language is represented, both in the brain itself and in how multiple languages interact, which parts of the brain are critical for the basics of language, and how language ability can be disrupted when the brain is damaged. The book further talks about progressive language disorders like semantic dementia and what the study of disordered language can tell us about the neurological basis of language. Finally, it looks at sign language research to see if and how sign language processing differs from speech and a relatively new hypothesis that has emerged: most previous work has taken for granted that comprehenders (and speakers) fully process language, that is that we try to build complete representations of what we hear, read, or produce.
The purpose of this book is to dispel many of the myths about the gifted, define the term in a nonelitist manner, explore how it manifests in individuals, describe why it is important, consider its origins, examine its psychological implications, and provide guidelines for its recognition, assessment, and development. It provides a cohesive conception of the psychology and development of a group with special needs. This perspective was shaped through 50 years of concentrated study and is informed by the author’s experience as a teacher of gifted elementary students, a counselor of gifted adolescents, a teacher educator of graduate students in gifted education, a psychologist specializing in the assessment of giftedness, a clinician with gifted clients, the creator of a refereed psychological journal on adult giftedness, and a researcher. In humanistic psychology, optimal development has been conceptualized differently. Self-realization can be understood in terms of Maslow’s self-actualization, Dabrowski’s secondary integration, Jung’s individuation, or other theoretical perspectives of human development. Families, educators, and psychologists can support inner development or they can act as agents of socialization, exhorting the gifted to "work harder" to attain external trappings of success.
In theory, the construction of an autobiographical memory begins with a retrieval model being generated in the brain. This retrieval model activates general knowledge about the self, which is used to retrieve episodic memory details consistent with the desired memory. Autobiographical memory is a complicated skill that results from the union of episodic memory and an abstract concept of self laid out over time. This transformation of episodic into autobiographical memories results in forgetting of some incidents, and mashups the details from two or more separate incidents into a single memory that feels like it happened to the self at a particular point in time. Autobiographical memory is said to serve at least three important functions: identity, directive, and social. Autobiographical memories also serve as guides for future behavior. A function of autobiographical memory is to create and strengthen bonds between people.
The ideas of Aristotle, Socrates, and Plato all contribute to the foundation of our understanding of the nature of human intelligence. Their ideas on topics as diverse as the origin of ability, the mind-body relationship, and general inquiry methods continued to inspire thinkers centuries later and influenced those who shaped modern psychology and intelligence theory. This chapter provides an overview of recent research on how people’s beliefs about intelligence impact their behaviors, a body of research that has significant implications for education. The emergence of reliable genetic and neurological research methodologies is creating a new area of study in which environmental, biological, and psychological facets of intelligence are studied simultaneously. Structure of Intellect (SOI) model represents a very different approach to theories of intelligence. Recent technological advances have encouraged explorations into the relationship between brain function and specific types of cognitive functioning.
This chapter talks about the representation of language in the brain— including what parts of the brain are known to be involved in language. It talks about how multiple languages are represented and interact in bilingual speakers. The most important lobes for language are the temporal lobe and the frontal lobe. In terms of language, in right-handed people it is the left hemisphere that supports the majority of language function. There are two areas in particular that appear to be especially important for language: an area toward the front of the brain in the frontal lobe that includes Broca’s area and an area more or less beneath and behind the ear toward the back of the temporal lobe called Wernicke’s area. Broca’s aphasia is characterized by difficulty with language production—with effortful, slow speech, and the striking absence of function words like prepositions, determiners, conjunctions, and grammatical inflections.
Research on both sign language and how it is processed has been growing quickly over the last decade, with researchers from a number of different fields increasingly interested in it. This chapter addresses two common misconceptions about sign language to understand exactly what sign language is. French sign language is just a version of spoken French, British Sign Language (BSL) is just a version of English, and so on. Variations in hand shape and other differences can differentiate dialects of sign language. Sound symbolism shows that there are cases in spoken language when sounds are linked in a nonarbitrary way to meaning. Further, there are phonotactic rules that differ from language to language about how signs may be formed. Speech errors are mistakes that speakers make when they intend to say one thing but something else comes out instead.
The term genius is peculiar. It can be applied to a diversity of phenomena or confined to just one or two. The tremendous range in usage reflects the fact that genius is both a humanistic concept with a long history and a scientific concept with a much shorter history. The word genius goes way, way back to the time of the ancient Romans. Roman mythology included the idea of a guardian spirit or tutelary deity. This spiritual entity was assigned to a particular person or place. Expressed differently, geniuses exert influence over others. They have an impact on both contemporaries and posterity. The exemplars of intelligence have a feature in common: They are called as exceptional creators. The favored definition is that creativity satisfies few separate requirements. First, to be creative is to be original. In main, genius in the leadership domain of achievement appears to fall into several groups.Source:
This chapter explores positive psychology’s attempt to identify significant human virtues. Early in the positive psychology movement it was recognized that in order to advance research on human excellence, there was a need to develop a classification system complete with measurable strengths that would be meaningful to the good life. The chapter describes and defines the six core virtues, and also explores some of the more specific human strengths thought to be clustered with each virtue. The author believe that the most significant achievement of the Values in Action (VIA) project was to identify virtues and strengths that appear to transcend time and culture. Finally the chapter emphasizes and recommends two other attempts to identify transcendent virtues that come from outside of psychology. To emphasize one virtue without the others is bound to result in an imbalanced life.
This chapter explores the circumstances of happiness. It evaluates whether things such as gender, age, income, work, and leisure have an impact on happiness. It shows that the circumstances of our gender, where we live, our age, and our income don’t contribute much to our subjective well-being (SWB). The first circumstance is whether one’s gender has any impact on one’s happiness. The chapter examines whether geography is related to happiness. It looks at the relationship between income and happiness, there is one important interpretation to consider: It is possible that happiness actually creates more income. The natural interpretation of the positive relationship between wealth and well-being is to assume that prosperity produces SWB, but it is important to consider the reverse direction of causation. The chapter focuses on the circumstances of work that predict job satisfaction but there are factors within the person that are at least as important.
Relationships are important to our happiness but, as it turns out, things are not quite as straightforward as this proposition would seem to imply. The first important observation that we can make of this association is that the perception of social support appears to be more significant to happiness than objective indicators of social support. Objective indicators of social support such as number of friends and frequency of social activity show small and sometimes nonsignificant relationships with happiness. One possibility is that the correlation between satisfaction with one’s relationships and satisfaction with life is simply a product of method invariance. The chapter focuses on how different types of relationships affect happiness. But this approach has a tendency to ignore the common relationship dynamics that might impact happiness across relationships. It also focuses on three dynamics of happy relationships: capitalization, gratitude, and forgiveness.
This chapter explores the connection between cognition and happiness and describes the cognitive characteristics of happy people. It examines each of three stages of cognition such as attention, interpretation, and memory in turn, and discusses how they relate to happiness. It follows this discussion with research on affective forecasting, and how inaccurately forecasting our emotional future might inhibit our happiness. Research also suggests that happiness might help us get out of the shackles of self-preoccupation so that we can see beyond ourselves. Moreover, the relationship between negative emotion and self-preoccupation appears to be reciprocal: When we are in a negative mood we tend to be more self-preoccupied; but when we are focused on yourself this tends to promote negative moods. Finally, the chapter explores how affective forecasting errors can impact our happiness.
This chapter explores whether it is possible to improve the happiness. If boosting people’s happiness is achievable, this begs the question of how: how can people change their happiness. The chapter explains some of the most effective techniques found by psychological science to increase happiness. But before that it examines successful treatments for happiness. Religious traditions from both the East and the West have emphasized meditation and contemplation as paths to spiritual well-being. One meditation practice has shown great promise, however, for enhancing happiness: Loving-kindness meditation. Happy people deal with the unpleasant circumstances in their lives in a healthy way, and one effective way to deal with the bad stuff in people’s life appears to be grateful reappraisal. The chapter considers comprehensive treatment packages, also referred to as “shotgun” treatments, designed to improve one’s happiness.
This chapter helps the reader to learn happiness matters. Happiness is not simply a nice consequence of a successful life. Indeed, happiness itself is consequential. Research has shown that there are a number of beneficial by-products to experiencing positive emotions frequently: better relationships, better health, and better occupational success. Lyubomirsky’s theory highlights the importance of the intentionality of positive activities and this brings up an important point about happy people’s pursuits. As positive psychology and the study of happiness come more and more into the public eye, the author increasingly see the need for science to be at the heart of positive psychology. The positive psychology movement has identified six primary virtues that are essential to the good life: wisdom, courage, love, justice, temperance, and transcendence. Although these virtues vary somewhat in their relationships to subjective well-being (SWB), they all may be seen as critical to the life well lived.
This book is about all the exciting aspects that have been investigated in the science of positive psychology. One of the reasons that the interest in positive psychology has increased so much in recent years is that people are interested in happiness, and they’re interested in enhancing their well-being. All conceptions of positive psychology involve something to do with the “positive side of life”, which is clearly contrasted with the negative side of life. The positive side of life seems to go by many names, such as happiness, flourishing, thriving, a worthwhile life, a meaningful life, a fulfilling life, or “what goes right in life”. The study of positive subjective states involves two related but distinct areas of study: positive emotions and subjective well-being (SWB). Positive psychologists often refer to two types of happiness: hedonic and eudaimonic. Any treatments of the history of happiness spend little time on ancient Jewish contributions to our understanding of well-being. From the early Christian tradition, writers encouraged enduring suffering now in the light of future happiness in the afterlife. The book focuses on two theories that are both representative and helpful to the field of positive psychology: the Self-Determination Theory (SDT) and the Hedonic Adaptation Prevention (HAP) model. Gratitude and compassion are very important to the good life; however, when we also emphasize strengths such as prudence, humility, self-control, and integrity, we are much more likely to flourish. The issue of Internet relationships also brings up an alternative form of relationships: Our relationships with our pets. The book attempts to describe the cognitive characteristics of happy people.
- Go to chapter: Foundational Concepts and Issues of Positive Psychology: The What and Why of Happiness
This chapter shows that how positive psychology is in fact important to psychology as a whole. It attempts to explain the foundations of positive psychology. It looks at basic conceptions of happiness and subjective well-being (SWB) including all the debates therein, it explores the history of happiness, it debates the criticisms of positive psychology, it examines important theories of SWB and positive emotion, and finally it gives a taste of research in positive psychology. The chapter demonstrates the importance of the study of happiness and SWB. Moreover, as Fredrickson’s theory has shown, positive emotions are crucial, in that they broaden the authors’ momentary thought/action readiness and build essential personal resources for the future. Happiness and joy are consequential, as Helen Keller affirmed, “Joy is the holy fire that keeps our purpose warm and our intelligence aglow”.
This chapter investigates the genetic makeup of happy people, and draws some conclusions about biological contributions to happiness. It discusses the behavioral characteristics of those who are happy. The chapter delves into an important area of research in positive psychology: looking at the personality traits that predict happiness. It shows that happy people are active in their work and leisure life, and extends this to a more general conclusion: Happy people tend to be active people. Contrary to the stereotype of happiness producing “contented cows”, happy people appear to be actively engaged in life. Religious and spiritual people tend to be happier than those who are not. A healthy humility may have an important role to play in our happiness. Humility helps us accept who we really are, so we can get past ourselves to focus on others and the beauty all around us.
Creativity and intelligence, like bacon and eggs, certainly seem like they should go together. But exactly how they do, or whether intelligence is part of creativity or creativity is part of intelligence, is still debated. At one point in time, a ‘threshold’ theory was popular, which argued that creativity and intelligence are positively related up until an IQ of approximately 120. Some studies have found that although creativity does predict GPA, other variables do it better or more directly, such as cognitive style, mental speed and short-term memory, or reasoning ability. An additional way of considering how creativity relates to intellectual abilities is to consider how creativity is connected to learning disabilities (LD). Another learning disability with a relationship to creativity is Williams syndrome. Healey and Rucklidge found that although 40” of a creative group showed symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), none met the level for actual diagnosis.
Throughout history, creators have used their skills in ways that have led to tremendous negative impact. Clark and James describe ’negative creativity’ as something that ends with a bad outcome even without a bad intention. If negative creativity is someone taking office supplies without wanting to hurt the company, then malevolent creativity is someone stealing essential company secrets to sell to its competitors with the specific desire to do harm. Malevolent creativity can be seen in terrorism and criminal behavior. Creativity is a tool that can be used for good or bad purposes. The flip side of the coin is that there are arrays of studies that show the healing powers of expressive forms of creativity. Indeed, if there is a genuine connection between creative genius and mental illness, it could easily be the creativity in their lives that kept some of the geniuses afloat and as healthy as possible.
This chapter addresses how creativity operates on individual and social/environmental levels, and the effects and outcomes of the creative mind. Within creativity, however, there are four P’s, person, process, product, press or place, that are used to help shape how we conceptualize this broad concept. Another way of conceptualizing how to approach creativity is the idea of C’s. A core distinction is made between little-c and Big-C. Big-C is the kind of creativity that will last for generations; it may be remembered, used, or enjoyed a hundred years. In contrast, little-c is everyday creativity. Beghetto and Kaufman proposed mini-c and Pro-c. In mini-c, the initial spark of creativity does not have to be held up to the same standards that we use for typical everyday creativity. An interesting aside is that an implication of the model is that a Pro-c creator should be able to make money with his/her creativity.
One way of thinking about the question of creativity and domains is to ponder the lack of renaissance men and women—people who are truly creative in multiple arenas. It is important to note that both a domain-general and domain-specific point of view would allow for polymaths—a domain-generalist would say that these polymaths are using the same creative processes to paint and sculpt and be an accountant, whereas a domain-specificist would argue that they use different processes. Within creativity research, many studies have categorized creative domains. One key work is that of Carson, Peterson, and Higgins, who devised the creativity achievement questionnaire (CAQ) to assess 10 domains. They broke the domains down into two larger factors: the Arts and Science. A recent study by S. B. Kaufman did find cognitive differences by domain; general cognitive ability was a stronger predictor of creative achievement in the sciences than in the arts.
This chapter focuses on a key issue, intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation and their relationship to creativity. Learning goals are associated with intrinsic motivation. Performance goals are associated with extrinsic motivation. One way to think about the link between intrinsic motivation and creativity is in Csikszentmihalyi’s conception of Flow, or optimal experience. Flow represents the sensations and feelings that come when someone is actively engaged in an intense, favorite pursuit. Controlling evaluation emphasizes the specific task performance, triggering extrinsic motivation. Informational evaluation is more concerned with feedback and the chance to learn, and thus increases intrinsic motivation. It is found that informational evaluation led to more creative ideas than did controlling evaluation. The two self-oriented motivations are in essence intrinsic and extrinsic; growth is the personal enjoyment of the creative process, and gain is being driven by traditional rewards.
Most creativity researchers consistently focus on two key determinants. First, creativity must represent something different, new, or innovative. It is not enough to just be different-creativity must also be appropriate to the task at hand. Kharkhurin’s Four-Criterion Construct of Creativity attempts to integrate both Western and Eastern conceptions of creativity. In addition to the basic two constructs, novelty and utility, Kharkhurin proposes the more Eastern-related ideas of aesthetics and authenticity as being part of the creativity equation. The word innovation is sometimes used interchangeably with creativity, but usually conveys a greater emphasis on application and is more associated with the worlds of business, management, engineering, and industrial/organizational psychology. One distinction between creativity and innovation that has been proposed is that creativity is thinking of new ideas and deciding on which ones are best, whereas innovation also entails implementing these ideas.
The importance of the field of geropsychology (psychology of aging) is seen in the ever-increasing demographics of older adults. A psychologist needs to understand the various life stages that define different cohorts of older adults. Older adults are affected by the forces of stigma and ageism, which are of four types: personal, institutional, intentional, and unintentional. A majority of older adults experience age discrimination and stigmatization after the age of 65. The use of medical model of psychopathology causes contradictions and distortions, one of which is the use of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). Assessment of deficits in olfactory functioning are potentially useful for a psychologist who is attempting to differentiate between cognitive disturbances of normal aging and mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Sexual interest remains high throughout old adult developmental stages, but sexual activity declines in most men as they age. While older adults are more likely to avoid illicit substances, many older adults having chronic pain from cancer or arthritis need opioid medications. Older adult abuse is a multifactorial phenomenon as the abuse may be emotional, financial, physical, sexual, or self-induced. Environmental geropsychology is based on Lewin’s field theory model Lawton and Nahemow’s ecological model, and an environmental geropsychologist focuses on the environmental component to develop interventions to change older adults’ interpersonal and intrapersonal experiences. Heightened awareness of coming of death results in an existential crisis for many older adults causing a loss of their sense of purpose for their lives.
Psychologists need to be alert to the phenomenon of avoiding discussing sexuality with older adult patients because they embrace the idea that older adults are asexual, or because they lack the knowledge of older adult sexuality. Heterosexual women who remarry in later life report higher levels of sexual activity that transition to higher levels of emotional intimacy as compared to prior married life when they were younger. Men in general tend to maintain sexual interest and sexual activity throughout their adult developmental stages, from 35 years of age to the old-old adult developmental stage. Sexual interest remains high throughout these developmental stages, but sexual activity declines in most men as they age. Approximately 16.5" of sexually active older adults have a diagnosis of HIV infection. HIV-infected older adults are heterosexual older adult men and older adult women, gay males, lesbians, and transgendered older adults.
Contemporary psychotherapy addresses behavioral issues of an older adult by focusing on the degree to which an older adult is able to cope positively with the environmental stressors converging on him or her. An environmental geropsychologist focuses on the environment component of Lewin’s equation and develops interventions to change older adults’ interpersonal and intrapersonal experiences with psychosocial stressors with interventions aimed at the environment. The theory of affordances states that the perceptions that older adults have of their physical environments have functional significance for older adults, and shape older adults’ behaviors. The tri-dimensional intervention model states that there is a comprehensive interaction among the cognitive, conative, and affective components in an older adult’s environment. All three components are the targets for intervention by an environmental geropsychologist. The conative component is the aspect of the brain that acts on one’s thoughts and feelings.
A psychologist must confront many prejudices against older adults that are manifested in most people in non-older adult cohorts. Clinical psychologists specializing in geropsychology work with individual older adults; family members of older adults, including spouses/partners, siblings, and adult children; and caregivers when treating the psychological problems experienced by older adults and dealing with issues of caregiving to older adults experiencing mental illness, dementia, and/or psychological reactions to co-occurring medical illnesses. Unfortunately, despite the fact that older adults are affected by the forces of ageism and stigma, and the fact that community psychologists strive to understand and improve social inequalities and to enable empowerment of marginalized people, there is a significant dearth of research in the field of community psychology. There are four types of ageism: personal, institutional, intentional, and unintentional. The majority of older adults have experienced age discrimination and stigmatization at some time after the age of 65.
This chapter talks about psychoactive substances that are commonly misused or abused by older adults. It is important for a psychologist to understand the psychopharmacological dynamics of each substance, how they are administered by an older adult, the symptoms of intoxication and withdrawal, and the psychosocial consequences experienced by the older adult misusing or abusing psychoactive substances. Unlike younger adults, older adults are more likely to avoid illicit substances such as cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, psychedelics such as lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) or mescaline, and designer drugs. Historically, the psychoactive substance of choice was alcohol. There are two general types of opioid psychoactive substances: naturally occurring opioids and synthetic opioids. Naturally occurring opioids include opium and its derivatives morphine and codeine, and heroin, which is a chemical manipulation of morphine. Unfortunately, many older adults suffer with chronic pain from cancer, arthritis, or injuries, causing a need for opioid medications.
Older adults experiencing cognitive decline and any of the dementias are suffering in ever increasing numbers. With the aging of the baby-boom generation, the incidence of cognitive decline and dementia will exponentially escalate over the coming years. With this coming tsunami of dementia, older adults experiencing dementia, as well as their family members and caregivers, will need the services of psychologists. Psychologists are needed to help families recognize the importance of end-of-life planning for an older adult when first diagnosed with a dementia. When an older adult understands that he or she has responsibility for and choice in the decision to abuse a psychoactive substance, there is a greater probability of successful treatment and recovery from a substance abuse problem. Psychologists are in a unique position to assess whether older abuse is occurring and, when discovered, to intervene with advocacy initiatives.
A psychologist’s first task when assessing an older adult for dementia is to discriminate between normal cognitive decline, mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and dementia. Teaching an older adult how to increase positive neuroplasticity is a useful intervention that will improve functioning in an older adult experiencing mild cognitive impairment, and will delay the progression of cognitive deterioration in an older adult experiencing dementia. Assessment of deficits in olfactory functioning are potentially useful for a psychologist who is attempting to differentiate between cognitive disturbances of normal aging and mild cognitive impairment that may progress to Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease is a chronic, debilitating disease process that begins with inclusions of abnormal proteins in neurons in the brain, although this stage of the illness does not demonstrate any cognitive impairment in the older adult.
The medical model of psychopathology currently guides psychiatrists and many psychologists who are treating older adults experiencing psychological problems. Use of this model causes contradictions and distortions for the treating clinician and limits the effectiveness of treatment for older adults experiencing psychological problems. There are three areas of concern that illustrate these contradictions and distortions. The first area of concern is the fact that only two classes of psychiatric diagnoses meet the characteristics of a disease. The second area of concern is how the current use of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) continues a tradition among psychiatry, managed-care companies, and insurance companies that puts pressure on psychiatrists, psychologists, hospitals, and psychiatric rehabilitation facilities to treat in the most cost-effective and short-term manner. The third area of concern is the relationship that has occurred between psychiatry and pharmaceutical marketing forces.
The heightened awareness of coming of death, and the anticipation of dying, results in many older adults experiencing an existential crisis. For some older adults approaching or in the age bracket of 75 to 84 years of age, the expectation of death becomes acute and triggers a need for end-of-life planning, also referred to as advance care planning. Palliative care is considered a good death because it keeps an older adult comfortable, provides counseling, and is a means to control pain that a dying older adult would otherwise experience. There is a significant need for psychologists to provide counseling to older adults experiencing disenfranchised grief because adults experiencing this type of grief suffer from difficulty experiencing their loss when it is not validated by others. Euthanasia is accomplished by an older adult’s request to his or her physician based on the intention of ending pain and suffering when terminally ill.
Psychologists work with micro-level and macro-level orientations. Clinical psychologists with a micro-level orientation focus on individuals, families, and small groups when performing psychotherapy. Community psychologists have a macro-level orientation. The aging population presents many opportunities for psychologists, both those engaged in scholarship and those working clinically with older adults, and for community psychologists addressing issues relating to social structures and organized communities of older adults, economic issues such as poverty and access to medical services, and issues relating to senior housing. Contemporary theory indicates that it is equally important for psychologists working with older adults to focus on the positive aspects of aging when addressing the psychopathological problems older adults are experiencing. Erikson’s stage theory originally had seven stages: basic trust versus basic mistrust; autonomy versus shame and doubt; initiative versus guilt; industry versus inferiority; identity versus role confusion; intimacy versus isolation; and generativity versus stagnation.
The most useful and efficient way of starting one’s sleep program is by understanding their current sleep–wake patterns. The standard measurement tool for insomnia is the “sleep diary”. Sleep diaries are not really diaries, but simple logs, based on one’s recollection of their last night’s sleep. Because they are the expert on their insomnia, they are the best person to report on each night’s sleep in order to measure their sleep problem. In fact, people with insomnia who go to sleep labs usually have trouble sleeping in the lab, which simply confirms their insomnia. Although the sleep information obtained from consumer wearable devices is appealing, at the time of writing this, these trackers are not yet ready for use in Sleep Therapy. This chapter provides a note about personal electronic sleep trackers and discusses logging your sleep with a sleep diary.
After Week 4 of Sleep Therapy, it is recommended that one should check to see if they are now free from insomnia. One can do this by looking at the same things in their current sleep diary, before they started Sleep Therapy. This chapter provides suggestions to find out the experiences of initial insomnia, multiple awakenings, middle insomnia, and terminal insomnia. If a person takes longer than 30 minutes to fall asleep, he/she is experiencing “initial insomnia”. If a person has more than 3 awakenings per night, he/she can describe it as having “multiple awakenings”. If a person awakes each night, (3 nights or more) for greater than 30 minutes, he/she is experiencing “middle insomnia”. If a person wakes up for more than 30 minutes too early on at least 3 mornings, then he/she has “terminal” or “end-of-night” insomnia.
Sleep Therapy is the term used for the specific program, which combines the most powerful and effective components of cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. The first part of the program, called FIRST THINGS FIRST, involves recording one’s sleep using sleep diaries to assess the nature of their insomnia. This chapter focuses on how to uncover, or rediscover, the biological processes that allow one to sleep. It shows how to tailor one’s bedtime and rise time in order to get solid sleep, and how to associate one’s bed with great sleep. The procedures will be summarized in Six Steps to Solid Sleep, the main techniques of Sleep Therapy. With some practice of these relaxation and “cognitive therapy” techniques, one knows how to move their mind into a state that is more conducive to having sleep arrive, to having the velvet hammer descend.
This chapter provides methods to overcome the negative self-talk, by replacing it with balanced thinking that includes some realistic optimism. We humans have problem-solving, thinking brains that are always trying to make sense of our world. Sometimes sleep-related thoughts persist and this is when we need to face them head-on, evaluate them and respond to them in a new way so they are not so alerting and troubling. The chapter introduces us to the “cognitive therapy” component of cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (
CBT-I). Feelings are basic and instinctive and easier to identify than thoughts. Therefore, the chapter presents an exercise that starts with asking one about their feelings, and then asks them to identify their associated automatic sleep-related thoughts. It provides an example, based on a real person with insomnia.
Hygiene means “principles of maintaining health; the practice of these”. In the strict sense “sleep hygiene rules” are tips for maintaining good sleep health. They include things that our grandmother may have told us, such as don’t eat a big meal before we go to bed. The research concurs: Sleep hygiene alone is not effective for reversing chronic insomnia. This chapter offers the recommendations or the top tips for better sleep. They can be helpful for people who usually sleep well but who have occasional or situational sleep problems in order to prevent further problems. By following them, one can certainly eliminate some of the factors that can interfere with sleep.
There are things over which one have direct control. So, if they are contributing to poor sleep, they can be addressed right away. One will now be perusing their sleep diary for three things: naps, alcohol, and sleep medication. Not that any of these things is bad, one just wants to make sure that they are not interfering with their nighttime sleep. If they are interfering, it is much easier to deal with them now, before one goes further. If one did nap, were the naps inadvertent or intentional? If they were inadvertent, this can be a sign of “excessive daytime sleepiness”. If the naps were intentional, then look at the timing of each nap. If one is taking sleep medication, it is dangerous to also drink alcohol. So, if one takes sleep medication, be sure to read and follow the instructions on the medication label.
Women are more likely than men to have insomnia. A family history of insomnia increases the likelihood of developing insomnia, especially if one’s mother had sleep difficulty. Some girls and women experience worse sleep in the 3–4 days before their menstrual period than at other times in their cycle. This is especially likely if they have premenstrual symptoms like depressed mood, irritability, appetite changes, and feeling tense. Pregnancy increases the risk of developing some other sleep disorders. Childbirth is a time when your sleep is bound to be totally disrupted. Women who develop persistent insomnia sometimes identify childbirth as the starting point of their poor sleep. Effective treatments are available for most sleep disorders. For insomnia, women make up the majority of volunteer participants in treatment studies. Cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia works to reverse insomnia during most stages of life including young adulthood, midlife, and old age.
The completed sleep diaries will provide very interesting and useful information. This chapter helps the reader to go through their baseline sleep diary and see what it tells us. One will be looking at certain rows of their sleep diary now. The chapter guides us through the sleep diary, pointing out what to look for. It follows the same sequence that the author uses when he examines people’s sleep diaries in the clinic, which is not necessarily the same order in which we filled out the sleep diary. The first mission is to identify what type of insomnia we have. One has just looked at their baseline sleep diary for initial insomnia, multiple awakenings, middle insomnia, and terminal insomnia. It is quite common for people to have more than one type of insomnia problem. Our impression of how we are sleeping is, of course, one of the most important measurements.
This book provides us with what we need to sleep well. It provides the tools and techniques to reverse insomnia and improve sleep long-term. Insomnia, persistent trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep, affects our daytime functioning and wellbeing. The book breaks down the principles of cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (
CBT-I), the sleep program considered first-line treatment in the clinic, into a step-by-step and reader friendly program that can be easily followed at home. Written by a clinical psychologist and researcher who has worked in the sleep field for 40 years, the book uses data from a real patient to illustrate each step of the process. The book is complete with detailed sleep diaries, worksheets, and more, all of which are also available online to download and use on your own journey to sleeping better now and into the future. Guiding readers through this self-directed sleep therapy program, the book features updated information and new scientific findings on key topics for patients and health care providers including: tried-and-true CBT-Imethods of sleep management; successful cognitive therapy methods to deal with racing thoughts at bedtime; different sleep needs for women and men through life and health conditions; influence of nutrition, exercise, and sex on sleep in a brand-new chapter; depression, anxiety, and traumatic stress and how they intersect with sleep; and prescribed and non-prescribed medications, herbal remedies, and cannabis for sleep.
One’s sleep diary provides good information about their sleep timing, quality, and quantity, and is the best way to measure sleep if a person has insomnia. For more in-depth examination of sleep by scientists, or sleep medicine clinicians, special equipment is used to track sleep stages and cycles through the night. To determine sleep stages, three main measurements are used: brain waves, eye movements, and muscle tone. These are measured using electrodes that are attached to the scalp, the face near the eyes, and under the chin, respectively. Polysomnography is measurement of sleep overnight in the sleep lab, with electrodes that are attached to the scalp, face, and chin, to determine sleep stages. Actigraphy is another way that sleep can be measured, but only roughly.
Sadness and anxiety are normal human emotions and stress is a normal occurrence in our lives. When we’re feeling somewhat down, anxious or stressed, we can benefit from exercise, relaxation, recreation, eating nutritious foods, allowing time for sleep, and talking to a friend. Clinical depression and anxiety are very common conditions. This chapter looks at what they are, what happens to sleep, and what helps recovery of mood and sleep. It outlines what is known about treating insomnia in three forms of clinical depression: major depression, Seasonal Affective Disorder, and Bipolar Disorder. Research on how people respond to natural disasters has told us that within the first months of disaster, many people develop signs of anxiety, depression and posttraumatic stress. With respect to sleep, people with posttraumatic stress disorder tend to get somewhat less deep sleep, longer periods of being awake during the night, and an overall shorter sleep duration.
There are several helpful strategies for calming active thoughts. To begin with, it is helpful to take an observer’s stance, and notice where exactly one’s mind is going. The chapter discusses the thoughts or worries about the effects of not sleeping, and the worries about things going on in one’s life. It is very common to have worries about work, school, relationships, family, or health issues. If this is true for one, write these issues down. Then consider which are productive worries and which are nonproductive. Nonproductive thoughts and worries are things that can be released and let go of at night. This is more easily said than done. Another approach to get out of problem-solving mode, or overactive-thinking mode, is by training one’s mind with meditation. There are many types of meditation and one can choose the type that suits them best.
This chapter guides one forward after the second week of sleep therapy. It presents a chart called Calculating Your Week 2 Sleep Efficiency. By copying one’s sleep diary answers to Questions 1 to 7 for the typical night into the top section of this chart one can calculate the sleep efficiency for week 2. The chapter also presents a chart that helps to adjust one’s threshold bedtime, and Six Steps to Solid Sleep for week 3. The six steps are: go to bed only when sleepy and not before your threshold bedtime; maintain a regular threshold rise time in the morning; use the bed only for sleeping; leave the bed if you can’t fall asleep or go back to sleep within 10–15 minutes; if sleepiness is overwhelming, one may take a short nap (set aside no longer than 45 minutes) in the afternoon; and maintain a sleep diary.
Although women tend to report insomnia in greater numbers, men have their share of sleep problems. Testosterone, a hormone that occurs in much higher levels in men than in women, influences the development and maintenance of male sexual characteristics, including reproductive organs, body structure, beard growth, strength, sex drive, aggression, and mood. There are important connections between testosterone and sleep. Research shows that the more the father is involved in caring for the infant—both during the day and at night—the better the mother’s sleep and the fewer times the infant wakes at night. There are two sleep disorders that occur more frequently in men than in women. These are “sleep related breathing disorders” and “
REMsleep behavior disorder”. This chapter outlines both. With age, men’s sleep, like women’s, becomes shorter and more broken up by awakenings. As with women, men experiencing stress at work are at high risk of insomnia.
This chapter guides one forward after the third week of sleep therapy. It presents a chart called Calculating Your Week 3 Sleep Efficiency. By entering the sleep diary answers for Questions 1 to 7 in the top section of the chart one can calculate the sleep efficiency. The chapter also presents Six Steps to Solid Sleep for week 4: go to bed only when sleepy and not before your threshold bedtime; maintain a regular threshold rise time in the morning; use the bed only for sleeping; leave the bed if one can’t fall asleep or go back to sleep within 10–15 minutes, return when sleepy, and repeat this step as often as necessary during the night; if sleepiness is overwhelming, one may take a short nap (set aside no longer than 45 minutes) in the afternoon, between 1:00 and 4:00 p.m; and maintain a sleep diary.
This chapter guides one forward after the first week of sleep therapy. It presents a chart called Calculating Your Week 1 Sleep Efficiency. By entering the Sleep Diary answers to Questions 1 to 7 for one’s typical night into this chart one can calculate the sleep efficiency for Week 1 of Sleep Therapy. If at any point one realizes that the night chosen is not really representative of the week, then one can try another night and see how close the sleep efficiencies are. If the nights are not consistent, then one may want to calculate all 7 sleep efficiencies and take the average for the week. The chapter also presents a chart that helps to adjust one’s threshold bedtime, and Six Steps to Solid Sleep.
As insomnia develops, one may start to worry about not sleeping. One of author’s friends had a stressful management position over which she started to lose sleep. She then feared that the lack of sleep would negatively affect her work performance. This made it even more difficult for her to sleep because the thought of underperforming increased her anxiety. One can see how this can become a cycle of worry and sleeplessness. This chapter discusses some of the common worries that are linked to insomnia. By examining these topics in the light of day, rather than ruminating during a sleepless night, we achieve a more balanced view of our sleep problem and its effects. Stressful thoughts at night have a way of expanding to fill the dark spaces around us. The chapter provides information that will help to bring one’s sleep-related worries down to earth.
This chapter explains two essential elements form Sleep Therapy, which are based on sleep science and psychology principles. Many people find this background intriguing. What’s more, it is always easier to carry out techniques when one understands how they work. The elements of Sleep Therapy are: uncovering one’s natural sleep processes and associating one’s bed with sleep. By understanding how sleep comes and goes in the natural state one can see more clearly how to restore healthy sleep. Good sleep comes when our biological sleep processes can operate without interference. Associating one’s bed with sleep element of Sleep Therapy is based on something called “conditioning” or “learned associations”. These are connections one make in their mind (automatically) between two things that occur together on several occasions.
Insomnia is a complaint of difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep that impairs the functioning or causes distress. So, compared to a bout of poor sleep, insomnia is a sleep problem that takes on a life of its own. Basically, it is persistent, unsatisfactory sleep that has daytime consequences. When insomnia occurs at least three nights per week and lasts for three months or longer, it is technically called “chronic” insomnia. People with insomnia report low mood, irritability, poor concentration and memory, reduced physical well-being, and some difficulties interacting with other people. They also report having more fatigue-related car crashes than people without insomnia. People with insomnia seem to be able to perform mundane tasks of daily living but they tend to have less enjoyment of their activities and show less “cognitive flexibility”—they tend to think more narrowly and less creatively—than people who sleep well.
Years of research have revealed that certain techniques reliably lead to improved quality and quantity of sleep and increased satisfaction with sleep. Together these techniques can be called “cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia” (
CBT-I). In the mid-1990s two important reports were published on these techniques. These reports were based on meta-analyses. In a meta-analysis, the research data from many studies of a given treatment are carefully combined to provide the overall story on the treatment’s usefulness. In these particular meta-analyses, the authors reviewed studies that had compared CBT-Itechniques with no treatment or with a placebo treatment. Research shows that CBT-Iis useful even if one have some mild to moderate symptoms of anxiety or depression, or some long-lasting medical problem like chronic pain or cancer. This book shows how to deal with and overcome insomnia if one has insomnia that has lasted longer than 4 weeks.
This chapter summarizes the strategies of sleep therapy in 6 specific steps. The steps of sleep therapy appear to be simple, but they require some time and effort. The most important factor that determines whether their sleep will improve is the consistency with which one follows the steps. The chapter discusses fifth and sixth steps. Fifth step is if sleepiness is overwhelming, one may take a short nap (set aside no longer than 45 minutes) in the afternoon, between 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. Many programs recommend that one avoid daytime naps entirely because naps may make it harder to sleep at night. While this is partially true, one also knows that humans are biologically predisposed to have a nap in the afternoon if circumstances permit. Sixth step is maintaining a sleep diary. Keeping a sleep diary will show how one’s sleep improves as a result of their actions.
This chapter discusses the advantages and disadvantages of the current medications that are used for sleep. If a doctor prescribes a medication to help one sleep, it is most likely to be a benzodiazepine receptor agonist (
BzRA). If one needs sleep immediately, BzRAswill most likely help. Sometimes, instead of prescribing a BzRAfor sleep, physicians prescribe a low dose of an antidepressant or antipsychotic medication. For people who are depressed, the sedating antidepressants can improve sleep, more so than some other classes of antidepressants. Standard (immediate-release) melatonin can sometimes be useful for prevention of east-bound jet lag and for certain shift work schedules, and it may be helpful in the short term (up to 1–2 weeks) for sleep difficulty. Orexin is a neuropeptide that is involved in the regulation of wakefulness and sleep as well as other functions such as appetite regulation.
Modern personality science has made considerable advances in terms of understanding the nature and distribution of core individual differences across people that offer a more nuanced understanding of personality than prescientific models such as the humoral theory. Nonetheless, current models of personality risk for depression share much in common with these ancient notions, including the proposition that personality and temperamental dispositions toward depressive disorders emerge from biological systems, the properties of which can vary across people, creating differences in their basic reactivity to important classes of stimuli. Depressive episodes are not characterized by disinhibition, but other elements of low constraint may be an outcome of depressive behaviors. Personality traits are important correlates of depressive disorders, and a rich tradition and large empirical literature indicate that traits relevant to basic emotional processes may predict risk for these conditions.
The aim of applied research on depressive disorders is to stimulate the development of treatments for these conditions and to evaluate their efficacy. The role of mental health care systems is to facilitate access to these treatments including interventions focused on ameliorating symptoms and preventive approaches intended to forestall their development. Intervention research focuses on testing which interventions are successful at treating various clinical problems in the population. For conditions such as depressive disorders, they are evaluated by the magnitude of change in symptoms and functioning measures among patients who receive the intervention, compared to patients who are exposed to some condition. Treatments for unipolar and bipolar depressive disorders take many forms including psychotherapies and biological interventions such as medicines and electroconvulsive therapy. Among the most studied and best validated psychotherapies for depressive disorders are those that use behavioral and cognitive techniques to target symptoms and maintaining factors in the depressive disorders.
This chapter aims to highlight and clarify the particular ways in which scientific disciplines have approached understanding the variety of experiences people call depression, and to demonstrate how the knowledge generated by science has shed light on their human understanding of depression and resulted in improved identification and treatment of these conditions. Diagnoses of depressive disorders differ from colloquial meanings of the term depression often used to refer to more temporary reactions to those more troubling manifestations of the concept that are the province of psychopathological research. One important difference is that diagnoses fit the concept of a syndrome. A syndrome is a set of signs and symptoms that appear together in time in a coherent pattern. In the case of psychiatric disorders such as depression, symptoms are those problems that can be described by someone experiencing them but that are not readily observable by others, such as thoughts of hopelessness.
The aim of genetic research on depressive disorders is to clarify the distal causal mechanisms that lead to individual differences in risk for developing these conditions. Genetic influences on unipolar depression overlap considerably with those for Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), as well as those for NE. This suggests that genetic influences may drive comorbidity across anxiety and depressive disorders. Bipolar disorder (BD) and schizophrenia have shared genetic influences, as do bipolar and unipolar depressive disorders. The classic animal model of depression derived from studies of dogs exposed to repeated, uncontrollable, inescapable shocks. Animal models hold promise for helping to potentially identify endophenotypes of depression that could be useful targets for neuroscience or genetic approaches in humans. All the major theoretical models of the etiology of depressive disorders invoke mechanisms that are instantiated in biological processes including reactivity to emotionally salient stimuli and stress reactivity.
Depression, often referred to as the “common cold of psychopathology”, is among the most prevalent psychiatric conditions, yet it remains challenging to understand and treat. Experience such as the difficulty of continuing on with one’s typical routine, desires, and goals that differentiate more normal experiences of sadness and malaise from syndromes of depression drive people to seek treatment for these conditions. This book provides an overview of all aspects of unipolar and bipolar depressive disorders, including their presentation, course, impact on functioning, etiology, and treatment. It integrates recent research on risk factors for these conditions and biological underpinnings of depression and mania alongside well-established observations regarding the phenomenology and correlates of these conditions. The book explicitly integrates models of depression such as the diathesis-stress model and vulnerability model, across childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. The book shows how such major psychology disciplines as clinical, developmental, evolutionary, personality, and behavioral neuroscience shed light on the causes, risk factors, and treatment options for the full spectrum of depressive disorders. It describes what is known about the kinds of stress that seem to be most relevant to depressive disorders; how this stress may exert its effects; and other factors that may help to explain individual differences in the stress-depression relationship. Cultural and gender as variables are examined as is depression across the lifespan. In addition, the book clarifies common misconceptions about depression and mood disorders, and considers how the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM-5) affects diagnostic practice.
Stress is a central component of many lay conceptions of the causes of depression. The concept of stress, so ubiquitous and easily understood when used in common language to describe psychological distress and challenge, is actually a rather complex construct to measure and model for scientific study. There are a limited number of research designs that are actually adequate for exploring the role of stress in depressive disorders. A few studies have found that positive events may be related to recovery from depression, specifically positive events that represent an end to chronic stress or ongoing deprivation. Stress generation describes the ways in which individual differences in personality and behavior are intimately tied to the creation of stressful circumstances. Patients who are exposed to an environment characterized by high levels of “expressed emotion” by close others fare the worst over time.
Any theoretical model of depressive disorders must be consistent with people’s broader understanding of human psychology, including the origins and functions of their psychological processes. A number of theorists have offered models of depressive disorders that emphasize the possible adaptive significance to their species of these conditions and related emotions. The purpose of such models is twofold: to provide a conceptualization of depression that is consistent with evolutionary theory, and to describe how the etiology of depression may be understood as involving normal processes of adaptation. If depressive disorders and normal experiences of grief, sadness, and guilt emerge from shared mechanisms, then perhaps depression shares with these normal experiences their adaptive functions as well. Many of the evolutionarily based models generated to explain the existence of depression focus on the interpersonal and social contexts of depression.
This chapter focuses on identifying the primary features that appear to be common across all or several of diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, as well as those that differentiate them from each another; and describing the continuum of severity that can exist within any one of these disorders. Understanding the full spectrum of presentation of depressive disorders is useful for identifying features that may explain variability in functioning and outcome over time across individuals with the same disorder. It may potentially point to targets for understanding the etiology of these conditions. One of the most important distinctions made in psychiatric classification systems and in the scientific literature on depressive disorders is between bipolar disorders (BDs) and the unipolar mood disorders. The idea that manic episodes reflect a unique etiological pathway and have different implications for functioning and outcome compared to unipolar depressive disorders has received considerable empirical support.