4 Ways Religious Teens Are Healthier Than Non-Believing Kids


New research adds to the body of evidence showing that adolescents who embrace their faith have a much lower risk of (1) drug and alcohol abuse, (2) promiscuity, and (3) narcissism and an increased degree of (4) "prosocial" (i.e., friendly, socially conscious) behavior when compared to their non-practicing peers. Study findings, which support a growing body of research, suggest that young people who connect to a "higher power" may feel a greater sense of purpose and are less likely to be … [Read more...]

When a (Spiritual) Father Leads

A post at Catholic Exchange by my associate at the Pastoral Solutions Institute, Dave McClow.So how does a diocese get 12,000 to consecrate themselves to Mary to deepen their friendship with Christ?  Certainly the answer is through the Holy Spirit!  But he always works through people.  It was our spiritual father that led, but in a theologically appropriate “detail,” the diocesan-wide consecration was suggested by a woman!  So it all starts with a woman in the diocese named Ida List, a youth … [Read more...]

Belief Beats Genes: Study Reveals Shocking Truth About Reaching Your Goals


Simply telling people that hard work is more important than genetics causes positive changes in the brain and may make them willing to try harder, a study shows. "Giving people messages that encourage learning and motivation may promote more efficient performance," said the lead investigator. "In contrast, telling people that intelligence is genetically fixed may inadvertently hamper learning." Telling people...that hard work trumps genes causes instant changes in the brain and may make them … [Read more...]

A Special Day for Another “Dr. Greg”


It's the feast of my Patron Saint, Pope St. Gregory the Great, Doctor of the Church  … [Read more...]

2 Critical Ways Healthy Relationships Help You THRIVE!


Everyone knows that having healthy relationships promote well being, but how, exactly do they do that?  A new study looks at how, exactly, relationships promote well-being.Yesterday I posted the 5 factors that researchers say constitute thriving;  that is, living a deeply satisfying, meaningful, healthy and abundant life.  This latest research finds that relationships promote thriving in two important ways.   According to the study...The first important function of relationships is to su … [Read more...]

Hmm…Maybe Anxiety is Genetic After All?


Your Psychology Humor for the day. … [Read more...]

Protect Your Kids from Cyberbullies with this 1 Simple Habit


Cyberbullying was associated with mental health and substance use problems in adolescents but family dinners may help protect teens from the consequences of cyberbullying and also be beneficial for their mental health.About 1 in 5 adolescents has experienced recent online bullying and cyberbullying, like traditional bullying, can increase the risk of mental health problems in teens as well as the misuse of drugs and alcohol. It is important to understand whether cyberbullying contributes … [Read more...]

Has the Internet Changed Relationships?


 You bet it has. … [Read more...]

Are You Thriving? 5 Ways YOU Can Live A Fuller Life.


Self-help books (including a couple of my own--see here and here) often talk about thriving versus merely surviving but have you ever wondered what it takes to really thrive?Jesus said, "I came that you might have life and have it more abundantly" and I would argue that he was referring to both eternal life and life in the present.  Secular psychologists use the term "thriving" for what Christians might call an "abundant life"--at least this side of Heaven.    In fact,  researchers have ide … [Read more...]

Setting the Captive Free! New Research Illustrates our Power to Overcome Depression


In response to my post linking the new study questioning the serotonin-deprivation theory of depression, I received a very thoughtful email from a reader who wrote, "Dr. Popcak, some of my friends who suffer with depression are saying that in this article you are blaming them for their depression. Can you explain further?"Blaming the Victim?  A ResponseI am grateful for her question because I would never want anyone to think that I was blaming sufferers of depression for being d … [Read more...]