Psychology Around the Net: March 28, 2020

This week’s Psychology Around the Net dissects the psychology of comfort TV, tips on how to protect yourself from others’ negative energy, ways to take care of your mental health while working from home, and more.

Why You Can’t Stop Streaming Seinfeld. Or Frasier. Or Bones: On the Psychology of Comfort TV: No doubt you’re familiar with comfort television, but is your idea of comfort TV the same as your mom’s or dad’s? Sister’s or brother’s? What about your spouse’s or significant other’s? College roommate’s? You might have answered “yes” or “sort of” to some of those (say, a sibling), but answered “no, definitely not” to others. That’s because people cope with anxiety and trauma differently, so the television shows they turn to — the ones they find comforting — are just as different. We strive to provoke a certain emotional response with the shows we watch, and different shows provide different responses for different people.

How to Protect Yourself from Others’ Negative Energy: Get tips on how to keep your own power, use imagery, and even bounce the negative energy right back.

Veterans and First Responders Report Lasting Personal Benefits After MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy: Results of a long-term follow-up qualitative study show that many military veterans and first responders, including police officers and firefighters, with treatment-resistant post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) report having “lasting personal benefits” and an “enhanced quality of life” after being treated with methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). Researchers focused on MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in a long-term context (which is what sets it apart from previous research) and were encouraged to find that one year after the MDMA-assisted clinical trial for treatment-resistant PTSD, 15 out of the 19 study participants showed a greater than 30% reduction in PTSD symptoms.

More Men, More Problems? Not Necessarily: Overall, men are more prone to competitive risk taking and violent behavior, so what does that mean for groups with higher numbers of men than women? You might be thinking even more risk taking and violence, and you might be wrong.

A Healthy Distraction: 20 Journal Prompts to Explore: Healthy distractions work wonders during difficult times. One such healthy distraction is journaling. As Margarita Tartakovsky points out, journaling is a “great way to get to know ourselves better, get grounded, reconnect to our imagination, and brighten our perspective.” Check out these journaling prompts to get your ink flowing.

Working From Home? Time to Tend to Your Mental Health: This local news piece out of New Jersey tackles an important issue many Americans will face during these work-from-home weeks (or months): keeping an eye on how working from home impacts their mental health. More specifically, how the drastic change in daily routine impacts their mental health. Steps like creating structure, honoring when you need space, and reaching out to friends can help make the move from working onsite to working from home a healthy one.

Photo by Thibault Penin on Unsplash.

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