Psychology in the public eye: Coffee table book about psych testing – weird, creepy and classics tests

Psychology in the public eye: Coffee table book about psych testing – weird, creepy and classics tests

Courtesy of the @info_Psicologos twitter feed, “The Beautiful Yet Twisted History of Psychological Testing” was published by Wired Magazine on 8-17-16. This article features pictures and commentary of some quaint tests, some scary tests, and even a few that are still in use, such as the Rorschach, based on a book that will be published soon, “Psychobook.”

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Book:  We all have “layers” of personality, expressed differently in different contexts

Book: We all have “layers” of personality, expressed differently in different contexts

Published by the Science of Us blog on 8-4-16, “So, You Probably Have 3 Selves” reviews a “fantastic” book by Cambridge University psychologist Brian Little, “My, Myself, and Us: The Science of Personality and the Art of Well-Being.’  Dr. Little asserts that we all have three layers of personality: biogenic (determined by our genes), sociogenic (learned from our family and culture) and idiogenic (personality traits that we choose to adapt based on what is important to us).  We express, according to Dr. Little, different degrees of each personality in different situations. He advocates that we do not have a certain personality “type,” but we have a collection of personality tendencies that form our unique identity.  The review is, as is typical for this blog, detailed and informative.

Book review: “How We Built Our Dream Practice: Innovative Ideas for Building Yours.”

Book review: “How We Built Our Dream Practice: Innovative Ideas for Building Yours.”

imagesHow We Built Our Dream Practice: Innovative Ideas for Building Yours, by Dave Verhaagen, Ph.D., and Frank Gaskill, Ph.D., TPI Press, 2014.

Providing mental health services (therapy, testing, consultation-liaison services, and more) is increasingly challenging and stressful. Mental health professionals (MHPs) face pressures from Managed Care Organizations, expectations to be part of Accountable Care Organizations, competition from MPHs with less training, and more. Those of us in independent practice (individual or small group settings – not employed by someone else) are finding it increasingly difficult to survive – to say nothing about trying to thrive in our chosen field.   This book will challenge your assumptions about what you need to do to survive- and thrive- in the era of health care reform. 

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Critique of marital self help books, with “4 truths” that do help.

Critique of marital self help books, with “4 truths” that do help.

The Wall Street Journal published “Marital Disputes: A Survival Guide.  Quarreling with a spouse is inevitable, but a few truths can limit the fallout,” on 7-1-16.  The author discusses typical marital self-help books, finds them to generally be lacking, but also that there are some themes that come up over and over that may be helpful.  He distills the helpful information down to 4 “truths” – which do seem pragmatic and worth passing on to people struggling with relationship problems or wanting to improve their relationship skills.

Book Review:  Financial Management for Your Mental Health Practice: Key Concepts Made Simple

Book Review: Financial Management for Your Mental Health Practice: Key Concepts Made Simple

Book review: Financial Management for Your Mental Health Practice: Key Concepts Made Simple, by Jeffrey Zimmerman, Ph.D. and Diane Libby, CPA. (2015) TPI Press, softcover, 88 pp., $24.99.

This book packs a lot of helpful information into 88 pages.  The information that this book provides is valuable – maybe even crucial – for mental health professionals (MHPs), whether they are early in their career or have an established practice.  It also provides information that is crucial for those in independent practice, but even if you are employed the information will still be helpful.

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Critical review of some of the more extreme claims about “neuroplasticity”

The Wall Street Journal edition for 2-28-15 includes an interesting book review 2 books about neuroplasticity. The review, “Brainstorms Brewing,” is by Raymond Tallis, MD, who is described on his website as “ a philosopher, poet, novelist and cultural critic and was until recently a physician and clinical scientist.” He does seem to have impressive credentials for the material being discussed, including neurological work with acute and rehabilitation patients and award-winning research and publications about the brain and, more directly related to the topics of my blog, human behavior and psychology.

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