human behavior

  In Raising Human Beings, internationally renowned child psychologist and New York Times bestselling author of Lost at School and The Explosive Child Ross W. Greene Ph.D. explains how to cultivate a better parent-child relationship while also nurturing empathy, honesty, resilience, and independence.

Children of the New World introduces readers to a near-future world of social media implants, memory manufacturers, dangerously immersive virtual reality games, and alarmingly intuitive robots. Many of these characters live in a utopian future of instant connection and technological gratification that belies an unbridgeable human distance, while others inhabit a post-collapse landscape made primitive by disaster, which they must work to rebuild as we once did millennia ago.

Alexander Wesinstein is the director of the Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing. He is the recipient of a Sustainable Arts Foundation Award, and his stories have received the Lamar York, Gail Crump, and New Millennium Prizes, have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes, and appear in the anthology New Stories from the Midwest. He is an associate professor of creative writing at Siena Heights University and leads fiction workshops in the United States and Europe.

  Gregg Levoy's book, Vital Signs is about what inspires passion and what defeats it. How we lose it and how we get it back. It’s about the endless yet endlessly fruitful tug-of-war between freedom and domestication, the wild in us and the tame, our natural selves and our conditioned selves.

 The book also affirms the importance of courageous inquiry into dispassion—where we’re numb, depressed, stuck, bored—so the reader can recognize and change these tendencies in themselves.

    We live in the age of Computer Business Systems (CBSs)—the highly complex, computer-intensive management programs on which large organizations increasingly rely. In Mindless, Simon Head argues that these systems have come to trump human expertise, dictating the goals and strategies of a wide array of businesses, and de-skilling the jobs of middle class workers in the process.

    Following the success of Lean In and Why Women Should Rule the World, the authors of the bestselling Womenomics provide an informative and practical guide to understanding the importance of confidence—and learning how to achieve it—for women of all ages and at all stages of their career.

Working women today are better educated and more well qualified than ever before. Yet men still predominate in the corporate world. In The Confidence Code, Claire Shipman and Katty Kay argue that the key reason is confidence.

  Few things are as exciting—and potentially life-changing—as discovering an old letter. And while etiquette books still extol the practice, letter writing seems to be disappearing amid a flurry of e-mails, texting, and tweeting.

The recent decline in letter writing marks a cultural shift so vast that in the future historians may divide time not between BC and AD but between the eras when people wrote letters and when they did not. So New York Times bestselling author Simon Garfield asks: Can anything be done to revive a practice that has dictated and tracked the progress of civilization for more than five hundred years?

    

  Parents are accused of being both permissive and overprotective, unwilling to set limits and afraid to let their kids fail. Young people, meanwhile, are routinely described as entitled and narcissistic...among other unflattering adjectives.

In The Myth of the Spoiled Child, Alfie Kohn systematically debunks these beliefs--not only challenging erroneous factual claims but also exposing the troubling ideology that underlies them. Complaints about pushover parents and coddled kids are hardly new, he shows, and there is no evidence that either phenomenon is especially widespread today--let alone more common than in previous generations.

    

  As journalist Anneli Rufus sees it, the self-hating person inhabits a world of muted despair that prevents him or her from ever feeling at ease in the world.

In Unworthy: How to Stop Hating Yourself, Rufus mines the intractable, negative perceptions that she and others have held about themselves, and analyzes the emergence of self-esteem as a goal that feels unattainable for many people.

Anneli Rufus is an award-winning journalist and author of Stuck: Why We Can’t (or Won’t) Move On and Party of One: The Loner’s Manifesto.

    

  Bishop T. D. Jakes is one of the world's most widely recognized pastors and a New York Times bestselling author of over thirty books. Named by Time magazine as "America's Best Preacher," his message is of healing and restoration, transcending cultural and denominational barriers.

In his new book: Instinct: The Power to Unleash Your Inborn Drive, Jakes outlines how to re-discover your natural aptitudes and re-claim the wisdom of your past experiences. When attuned to divinely inspired instincts, Jakes believes we can become in sync with the opportunities life presents and discover a fresh abundance of resources.

He defines following your heart, a gut feeling, a hunch, or an intuition as instinct – “the inner knowledge bubbling up from a wellspring of wisdom” within that can lead to a bigger, elephant-sized life.

You Are Not Special

May 5, 2014

    

  Here are words you may not expect to hear at a commencement speech: "You are nothing special. Yes, you've been pampered, cosseted, doted upon, helmeted, bubble-wrapped. Yes, capable adults with other things to do have held you, kissed you, fed you, wiped your mouth, wiped your bottom, trained you, coached you, listened to you, counseled you, encouraged you, consoled you, but do not get the idea you're anything special because you're not."

Those words were part of a commencement speech given two years ago by a high school teacher, David McCullough, Jr. His message became an internet sensation. It's received more than 2 million views on YouTube. His speech struck a chord with many who agree that teenagers are harmed by the growing pressure to be exceptional.

Now, the Longtime Wellesley High teacher, father of four, and son of the famous historian has penned a new book titled, You Are Not Special and Other Encouragements.

    

  Is philosophy obsolete? Are the ancient questions still relevant in the age of cosmology and neuroscience, not to mention crowd-sourcing and cable news?

In her new book, Plato at the Googleplex: Why Philosophy Won't Go Away, acclaimed philosopher and novelist Rebecca Newberger Goldstein provides a dazzlingly original plunge into the drama of philosophy, revealing its hidden role in today’s debates on religion, morality, politics, and science.

    Humor, like pornography, is famously difficult to define. We know it when we see it, but is there a way to figure out what we really find funny—and why?

Ha!: The Science Of When We Laugh And Why is an investigation into the science of humor and laughter, cognitive neuroscientist Scott Weems uncovers what’s happening in our heads when we giggle, guffaw, or double over with laughter.

    The desire for dignity is universal and powerful. It is a motivating force behind all human interaction - in families, in communities, in the business world, and in relationships at the international level.

We talk about Dignity with Harvard Professor, Dr. Donna Hicks. Her book is Dignity: Its Essential Role in Resolving Conflict

    John D. Mayer, the renowned psychologist who co-developed the groundbreaking theory of emotional intelligence, now draws on decades of research to introduce another paradigm-shifting idea: that in order to become our best selves, we use an even broader intelligence—which he calls personal intelligence—to understand our own personality and the personalities of the people around us.

    

  In his new book, A More Beautiful Question, journalist and innovation expert Warren Berger shows that one of the most powerful forces for igniting change in business and in our daily lives is a simple, under-appreciated tool—one that has been available to us since childhood.

He says - Questioning—deeply, imaginatively, “beautifully”—can help us identify and solve problems, come up with game-changing ideas, and pursue fresh opportunities. So why are we often reluctant to ask “Why?”

   There are two supreme predators on the planet with the most complex brains in nature: humans and orcas. In the twentieth century alone, one of these animals killed 200 million members of its own species, the other has killed none. Jeffrey Masson's new book, Beasts, begins here: There is something different about us.

Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson is an ex-psychoanalyst and former director of the Freud Archives, and is the author of numerous bestselling books on animal emotions, including Dogs Never Lie About Love and When Elephants Weep.

    Expanding upon one of the most-read New York Times Magazine features of 2012, Smarter penetrates the hot new field of intelligence research to reveal what researchers call a revolution in human intellectual abilities.

Shattering decades of dogma, scientists began publishing studies in 2008 showing that “fluid intelligence”—the ability to learn, solve novel problems, and get to the heart of things—can be increased through training.

    Based on author Barbara Diane Barry’s popular course Art for Self-Discovery and supported by research in psychology and the science of brain function her book: Painting Your Way Out of a Corner guides readers through the process of overcoming blocks and expressing themselves freely in painting.

Through a series of exercises that emphasize improvisation and risk-taking, readers will learn how to quiet their inner critics and strengthen their creativity. The more we learn to play and accept whatever appears on the page, the more we are able to try new things in life.

Barbara Diane Barry is an artist and art teacher in New York City. Under the educational outreach program at Symphony Space, she teaches in public schools throughout NYC's five boroughs and gives tours in the city’s finest museums.

  The daughter of a widowed child psychologist and parenting author, Jessica Lamb-Shapiro grew up immersed in the culture of self-help, of books and pamphlets and board games and gadgets and endless jargon-filled conversations about feelings.

It wasn’t until she hit her thirties that Jessica began to wonder: if all this self-improvement arcana was as helpful as it promised to be, why wasn’t she better adjusted? She had a flying phobia, hadn’t settled down, and didn’t like to talk about her feelings.

"How To Work A Room"

Jan 13, 2014

  How To Work A Room by Susan RoAne is the classic bestselling self-help book on improving communication and socialization skills in business and life, giving you the confidence and tools to walk into any room and shine.

   Do “angels” exist? If so, are they heaven-sent or products of the human brain? After the publication of the bestseller The Third Man Factor, which examined the phenomenon of explorers who found themselves at the edge of death and experienced a benevolent presence that led them out of the impossible, John Geiger was inundated with firsthand accounts from people who had the same experience—a vivid presence that aided them as they faced crises ranging from physical and sexual assaults to automobile accidents, airplane crashes, serious illness, childbirth, and depression.

His new book, The Angel Effect, examines this phenomenon, and Geiger argues that it has the potential to aid us, even to save us, and asks whether it is a trainable skill.

    There are more parts of life that need to be organized than ever before. No longer just junk drawers and closets; now electronics, inboxes, garages, relationships, calendars, passwords, money and more all need attention, space and a way to be accounted for.

No one knows this better than Justin Klosky, founder of The O.C.D. Experience and author of the new book Organize & Create Discipline: An A-to-Z Guide to an Organized Existence

  Secrets, large and small, are a fact of human life. The new book, Secrets & Lies, explores the impact of keeping secrets; how they can damage our sense of self, jeopardize relationships and also the healing power of truth.

Author Jane Isay has found, people survive learning the most disturbing facts that have been hidden from them. And secret keepers are relieved when they finally reveal themselves--and things they are ashamed of--to the people they care about. Much depends, Isay writes, on the way of telling and the way of hearing.

    

  As a health psychologist, Dr. Kelly McGonigal’s job is to help people manage stress and make positive changes in their lives. After years of watching people try to control their bodies, emotions, and choices, she realized that much of what they believed about willpower was sabotaging their success and creating unnecessary stress.

It became clear that many scientific insights about self-control had not yet become part of public understanding. This led to the creation of Kelly’s Stanford University course, “The Science of Willpower,” which has helped hundreds of people achieve their goals by understanding the science behind why we give in to temptation, and how we can find the strength to resist.

    Joshua Greene is the John and Ruth Hazel Associate Professor of the Social Sciences and the director of the Moral Cognition Laboratory in the Department of Psychology, Harvard University.

In his new book, Moral Tribes: Emotion, Reason, and the Gap Between Us and Them, he explores the underlying causes of modern conflict.

  Society is at a crossroads. We can either continue on the path of consumption at any cost, or we can make new choices that will lead to a happier, more rewarding life, while helping to preserve the planet for future generations. Unfortunately, we can't all afford to install solar panels or buy a Prius. Does this mean we are doomed in our quest to live a truly sustainable life?

According to our next guest, collaborative consumption is a new way of living, in which access is valued over ownership, experience is valued over material possessions, and "mine" becomes "ours," and everyone's needs are met without waste.

Beth Buczynski is a freelance writer and editor who covers clean technology, sustainable design and environmental issues. Her new book is Sharing is Good: How to Save Money, Time and Resources through Collaborative Consumption.

  Tina Lincer is a writing in Loudonville, NY.

Far From the Tree: Parents, Children and the Search for Identity, Andrew Solomon’s book on parents, children and the bond between them and the cases of extreme difference - was published to ecstatic acclaim last year - landing on best-seller lists across the country, and "Best of" lists from The New York Times, Amazon, The Economist and more.

The book has now been released in paperback. Solomon opens Far From the Tree with an autobiographical chapter detailing his experience as a gay son of heterosexual parents. At the time of his youth, homosexuality was considered an illness and a crime. The book is about the struggle for those who are different and their need to find their own identity.

Over centuries, Christianity has accomplished much which is deserving of praise. Its institutions have fed the hungry, sheltered the homeless, and advocated for the poor. Christian faith has sustained people through crisis and inspired many works for social justice. Although the word "christian" implicates the epitome of goodness, the actual story is much more complex.

That story is explored in Paul Kivel’s new book Living in the Shadow of the Cross- which reveals the ongoing everyday impact of Christian power and privilege on beliefs, behaviors, and public policy.

Simply utter the word "perv" and you will get snickers and perhaps nudges- describe someone as a pervert and you smear their name painting him and or her as a monster who derives enormous sexual satisfaction from harming children.

In Perv: The Sexual Deviant in All of Us, Jesse Bering reclaims the word and delves into the subject - inviting readers to unpack the morality and sexual deviance. He argues that as a society we must stop asking what is normal and natural, and instead ask what is harmful.

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