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Psychology

This category contains 88 posts

To tell a story or not to tell a story

A story is a pretty powerful thing. I’ve had day campers come back to me a year later and repeat some of the stories I’ve told and I’ve watched adults debate the truth of a particular legend told on a canoe trip. The stories we tell ourselves can greatly influence how we respond to trauma … Continue reading

It’s not just figure skaters and gymnasts

As a figure skater I was pretty aware of how unreasonable societal and sport pressures can have pretty significant negative effects on the health of female athletes. Amenorrhoea, low bone mineral density, and low energy availability are all concerns due to high energy expenditure and low energy intake due to pressures to be thin and … Continue reading

Building community and resilience through gardening

Okay, so confessions first: I do not enjoy gardening. There is no part of crawling around on the ground with my hands in the dirt that I enjoy. I do enjoy the product of food gardens, but not enough to make me take up gardening. With that out of the way, I will say that … Continue reading

You need at least 2 hours a week in nature

There is significant evidence of the benefits of exposure to nature, from seeing trees out a window to living in a neighbourhood with street trees. All have been shown to affect factors like reducing the amount of medication patients take after surgery, increasing productivity at work, and decreasing rates of aggression. But new research carried … Continue reading

What makes you recycle?

Okay, first thing first. Recycling is not the way to go. We need to reduce the amount of waste we generate first. Strategies like carrying a reusable mug, metal water bottle, and cloth grocery bags are simple places to start on the reduce front. Other strategies like buying clothes that last longer (both fashion wise … Continue reading

Smiling: Placebo or Real Effect

There are certain things that I really care about a possible placebo effect versus actual benefits on (for an awesome review of the placebo effect check out this video by It’s Okay to be Smart). Anything that involves putting a foreign substance (medication, needles, etc) into my body, I don’t care if I might perceive … Continue reading

How Harry Potter can help us relate to others

I’m a fan of the Harry Potter series. One of the remarkable things about the character of Harry is his ability to identify with individuals who are oppressed. He rises in defence of muggle-born individuals and house elves. He bristles at talk of pure blood, even before he really knows what that means. The question … Continue reading

I was in pain today, so I went to the gym

I went to the gym today. I didn’t want to. I’m tired and my arm that has been a saga of five surgeries and three and a half years was giving me some definite grief, not to mention the pain of some of my other injuries, both recent and chronic. But I went with the … Continue reading

A dose of sugar makes the future seem worth waiting for

I wrote a post last fall on the impact of seeing nature on our ability to pass on small rewards now in order to receive bigger rewards in the future. To be honest, I had since forgotten about this but having been in a pretty good deep freeze off and on (but mostly on) for … Continue reading

Street Trees For Residents?

In my Masters research I looked into the influence of local greenspaces on why people chose to move out to the suburbs. That apparent connection to nature featured in the top three of most of my participants decisions. This isn’t really surprising as local nature has been previously found to be connected to greater sense … Continue reading

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