top-psychological-movies

Top 10 Movies Related to Psychology

Reading Time: 5 minutes

We all love to watch movies in our leisure time. In this article, we are giving you 10 films to make your curious about the psychological state of the human mind. These are handpicked for your viewing pleasure.

 

Top 10 Movies Related to Psychology

 

SYBIL

sybil

Sybil (1976) is one of the finest films when it comes to portraying multiple-personality disorder in the real world. In this movie, the protagonist suffered from a multi-personality disorder and developed 16 kinds of different personalities in herself. Sally Field, Joanne Woodward, and Brad Davis movie perfectly castes the scenarios, situations and how to behave with the person suffering from the multi-personality disorder. To see this purely psychological driven move you have to glue yourself with a chair to 3 hours and 18 minutes as its very long.

 

GOOD WILL HUNTING

Released in 1997, Robin Williams, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck starrer film directed by Gus Van Sant is an epic masterpiece that shows how psychology can manifest and help you. In this move Will Hunting, played by Matt Damon, a janitor at M.I.T has a great gift of mathematics. The films tell the story of an MIT mathematical prodigy who is able to solve any problem but is struggling to find his own identity. But one day he meets a girl who opens both his mind and heart. When he faces an emotional crisis, he takes help from psychiatrist Dr. Sean Maguireto, played by Robin Williams, who helps him recover. This film is a must watch for its heart moving moments.

 

THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS

the silence of lambs

If you want to dive deep into the mind of a psychopath then you cannot Dr. Hannibal Lecter, played by Anthony Hopkins. The silence of the Lambs (1991) is one of the famous films revolving around the psychology of the serial killer. It also stars Jodie Foster in a role the defined her career. The film is one of the benchmarks for a psycho-thriller. The film has other parts like Red Dragon (2002) but it’s the original that is the one that all recommend.

 

RAIN MAN

rain man

Rain main is a fascinating film about two brothers. The film stars Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise as two brothers. The movie blows everyone’s mind by showing extreme memory capabilities of Raymond. He is an astonishing character who is kidnapped by his own brother for ransom. The psychological aspect lies here is in the character of Raymond an Autistic and is a Savant, for his ability to memorize and recall all info he has read or heard before and he can count and do math at astonishing rates.

 

MATCHSTICK MEN

matchstick man

Matchstick Men (2003), directed by Ridley Scott, is a film about confidence tricksters. It is based on the book by Eric Garcia called Matchstick Men: A novel about Grifters with Issues. The main protagonist, a con artist called Roy, is flawlessly played by Nicolas Cage. In the film, he’s suffering from Tourette’s syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). It consists of two themes that are running parallel to each other. One one hand we see a clever story of conmen, filled with the expected twists and an impressive final ‘sting’. On the other hand, we see a deeply personal story of a man struggling to cope with serious mental illness. It is highly recommended to anyone interested in working in Adult Mental Health, whether in psychiatry, psychiatric nursing, psychology or in any of the branches of psychotherapy.

 

SPLIT

split

It’s another masterpiece from the Director M. Night Shyamalan and flawlessly played by James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy, Haley Lu Richardson. Released in 2016, this movie will not let you up from the cushioned sofas and glue you to the screens. Another multi-personality disorder movie will stun you from its suspense and thrills.

Kevin, having multiple-personality disorder carjacks and kidnaps three girls from a supermarket parking lot. He locks up the girls in a room and chillingly reveals at different times, a few of his 23 distinct personalities. It’s a thrill ride that you can’t afford to miss.

 

MEMENTO

memento

Memento, directed by Christopher Nolan, is based on a short story by his brother, Jonathan Nolan, called “Memento Mori”. The movie stars Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano. The film, released in 2000, is described by Nolan as “a psychological thriller about a guy who can’t make new memories and who is looking for revenge”. Memento specifically explores the condition of anterograde amnesia and reflects the difficulty that sufferers have in appreciating the passage of time as they struggle to exist with very limited recent memory. This movie inspired the film Ghajini by A.R. Murugadoss, who made this film both in Hindi and Tamil.

 

A BEAUTIFUL MIND

a beautiful mind

A Beautiful Mind is a wonderful psychological drama in which Dr. John Nash who is a mathematical genius and a natural code breaker, at least in his own mind. He suffers from clinical schizophrenia and depression. Russel Crowe plays John Nash in this film to absolute perfection. The portrayal of a person suffering from Schizophrenia is one of the most accurate depictions. According to the DMV-IV (a criterion scale assessing psychological disorders), John Nash was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia because of certain criteria he showed, hallucinations and delusions which lies under this disorder. This film is highly recommended.

 

THE STANFORD PRISON EXPERIMENT

 the stanford

In 1971, researchers at Stanford University wanted to study prisons and prisoner behavior. So they undertook an experiment. But it went unexpectedly wrong. The program also managed to bring infamy and change the lives of those who participated forever. Experimenting with a prison first requires a prison. The researchers were able to turn the basement of Stanford’s psychology building into a functional prison. Classrooms and offices became prison cells with hard beds. Directed by Kyle Patrick Alvarez based on the book The Lucifer effect this movie was an epitome of experimental psychology.

 

THE MACHINIST

the mechanist

This psychological thriller is one of the most thrilling movies of all time, Trevor Reznik, the protagonist played spectacularly and flawlessly by Christian Bale, is an industrial worker. He’s also on the edge of a breakdown. Trevor Reznik the protagonist who have not slept in a year and his weight plummeting as fast as his paranoia skyrockets, the film documents his increasingly tenuous grasp on reality. The movie also gives an insight to the extent an actor can go while being in character. Christian Bale is famous for this role for risking his life as he lost a lot of weight for this film.

So, here you go 10 handpicked films for you to enjoy. If you have suggestions of your own then let us know in the comment. Till then cheers and be awesome!

Improve conentration

How to Improve Concentration in the Age of Distraction

Reading Time: 5 minutes

With our eyes being constantly bombarded with images and information, how can one build and retain concentration in such a distracted age? This article shares some tips just to do that.

Our life in today’s world seems to be always switched on. We seem to always have our smartphones in our hands, laptop screen in front of our eyes. In the west, an average person spends around 10 hours a day in front of a screen (mobile and computer). In the context of India, a poll found that the connected youth of India spend around nine hours a day on the phone or a computer screen.

These have become, without us knowing, an integral part of your lifestyle. But what these devices have done is hampered our concentration and retention spans.  A study found that distraction by emails and phones have led to drop of 10 points in a person’s IQ. Another recent report estimated that we get interrupted every eight minutes, that is around 60 interruptions in our waking day! And all these interruptions contain a lot of information of some kind. A recent survey by the University of California estimated that we are bombarded by at least 30gb worth of information a day!

The overall impact of all this is on our concentration levels. We may be living in a constant state of alertness but never really giving full attention to one thing. This means the development of short attention spans, never able to retain information for a longer duration, and forgetting things very easily. In this article, we will tell you tips in regaining your concentration levels and adapting yourself in the age of constant distraction.

How to Improve Concentration

 

The Five More Rule

One of the simplest ways to boost your concentration levels in the five more rule. It’s simple, whenever you feel like quitting or giving up, just say to yourself five more – be it minutes, be it pages – as it will enhance your focus. The idea is to go beyond the point of restlessness or frustration which helps build mental strength. It is training your brain to endure and help develop concentration levels.

 

One Thing at a Time

These days people argue that we have reached new levels of multitasking. But in reality, we are not multitasking but rather switching between activities and not doing each one of them properly. Multitasking leads to a continuous partial attention, which lowers your overall concentration levels. So, the best way is to do one thing, properly, at a time. Before moving on to a different task take a 5-10 minutes break to organize your mind.

 

Meditation

Trying to fend off external and internal distractions is not an easy task. One of the best ways is to meditate and becoming more mindful. Meditation leads to mindfulness which helps develop overall concentration levels.

Recommended – 13 Easiest Ways to Cope with Stress

 

Counting Backwards

counting-backwards

Another unique way, which you can do in your free time, is to start counting backward from a thousand, sounds simple enough. Well, the catch is to count backward in sevens. It may sound annoying but it is actually a very effective way to develop your concentration levels.

Similarly, spelling words backward is also a good exercise to do. Start with simple words like pen, tip, etc and then move on to bigger words.

 

Exercises

Doing regular exercises also help the brain and the body to be in sync. During exercises, the brain is engaged with the body as it works out, which itself requires concentration.

 

Good Sleep

Lack of sleep also affects your concentration levels. One needs to have at an average eight hours sleep daily. But being surrounded by phones and laptops screens we almost go to sleep while using them, which is harmful to the eyes and the brain. It is recommended to have good sleep to keep away from phones or any form of screens at least an hour before sleeping.

Recommended – How To Deal With Procrastination?

 

Read a Book!

 Improve Concentration

I know you must be saying, then what will we do if we are not on our phones or on our laptops before we sleep? Then the answer might shock you – Read an actual book! We have gotten so used to skimming information from a screen that most of us have forgotten what reading an actual book feels like. Reading a book not only is good before going to sleep but it also helps you develop your concentration levels as it requires careful reading of the intricate plot structure, complicated characters and the flow of the narrative.

 

Eliminating Distractions

 Improve Concentration REMOVE DISTRACTIONS

While you cannot do away with a phone in today’s world but you can make it less distracting. For one, turn off all non-human notifications from apps. It means turning off notifications that are sent by non-humans. Another tip is grayscaling your screen. These days hidden in settings is the option to turn your screen into full black and white. The advantage of this that most apps are designed in a way to distract you from your work by using ‘eye-catching’ colors. So, by grayscaling you avoid this trap and you can choose what to use and what not to use.

To sum up, these are eight ways to help you develop concentration levels and help you be more productive in any work that you do. While you are at it don’t forget to explore yourself at Brainpundits, till then cheers and be awesome.

leadership-in-the-workplce

Leadership in the Workplace

Reading Time: 4 minutes

What comes to your mind when you hear someone say ‘leadership? What kind of image this word depicts in your mind? A political leader? your own manager? or simply your team leader?

In this post, I am going to talk and discuss some aspects about leaders, leadership, how it’s effectiveness inside a workplace and finally, we’ll dive into the section where you will get to know about how you can improve your leadership in the workplace.

They help themselves and others so that they can do the right things. They set direction, build an inspiring vision, a directive path and create something new. While Leadership is about mapping out where you need to go to “win” as a team or an organization; and it is dynamic, exciting, and inspiring. Leadership basically allow a person to take a strongly driven charge and lead its team, co-workers or colleagues in the right direction. But what is a leader?

Leader

You may have heard this phrase a lot of times “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail”. It is a famous quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson, which defines a gives a definition of the leader. Famous personalities also come to your mind when you think about leaders. For instance, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, or other world-famous leaders in history. Or perhaps there are leaders in your own life that have had a positive impact on you. What skills did all of these people have that made them effective leaders? Here are a few of them

A Leader is:

  • Committed to a Vision or Mission
  • Understands His or Her Role
  • Demonstrates Integrity
  • Sets an Example
  • Understands How to Motivate the Behavior of Others
  • Communicates Effectively
  • Willing to Take Risks
  • Is Adept at Problem-Solving

 

Leadership and workplace

Leadership generally involves these four prospects when applied to the workplace: –

  • Establishing a clear vision,
  • Sharing that motivating and inspiring vision with others so that they will follow willingly.
  • Providing information, knowledge, and methods to realize that vision.
  • Coordinating and balancing the conflicting interests of all members and stakeholders.

 

Establishing a clear vision

In business, a vision is a realistic, convincing and attractive picture of where you want to take your organization or team in the future. Vision provides direction, sets priorities, and provides a trail to your projects so that you can tell that you’ve achieved what you wanted to achieve. So, a vision strongly defines your leadership and its outcome. It combines the analytical side, in terms of vision creation with the passion of shared values, and simultaneously creating something meaningful for the people involved.

 

 

Motivating and Inspiring

A compelling vision provides the foundation for leadership. But it’s leaders’ ability to motivate and inspire people with that vision which helps them deliver that vision. For example, at the start of any project, one needs to instill inspiration for the teammates to follow in order to realize the vision.

 

 

Delivering and managing that vision

A compelling vision and an enthusiastic team are not enough, maybe they are the foundation stones to get done the projector to solve a problem, but real leadership skills lies in managing and delivering the vision that you created. A good leader must ensure that the work required to deliver the vision is managed and also need to ensure that the vision is realized successfully.

 

 

Team Building

After thinking about how to manage and deliver the vision the next ladder is to provide proper and precise coaching to achieve that task. Individual and team development are important activities carried out leaders to achieve the desired task and get the work done in the required team frame. Here the real tedious work of leaders come into play, to assess the strong and weak aspects of colleagues around him or her and then collect them into a team. Leaders must know about team dynamics in order to run a smooth ship.

 

How you can improve your leadership skills to become a better leader.

Here I am going to mention three traits by adding them to your life you can easily improve your leadership skills. These traits I am going to mention is a must have in any leader whether it could relate to community leadership, religious leadership, political leadership, and leadership of campaigning groups.

 

Three Essential Traits

Without any doubt, there are three traits that every leader must have in order to be successful and achieve a milestone in leadership. These are essential traits without which you will not be an effective leader. So, what are these three required traits?

 

 First is the desire to lead. In absence of it, you will never be comfortable and looks fit in the leader role. You will struggle with things on a daily basis, and your team members will sense thing in your overall outlook. So the desire is to lead is essential otherwise you might feel burnt out and your team members will not feel motivated to do any work. This might lead them to leave the office or force you to quit.

 

The second trait of successful leaders is a commitment to the mission and vision of the organization where they work. First, imagine how hard it could be trying to convince people to follow a mission that you yourself do not commit to. It would be a difficult task. So, first, in order to inspire other people to follow your mission, you need to fully commit to the mission and the vision and manifest it in your personality.

 

The final trait that leadership requires is integrity. It means doing what you say you will do and behaving the way that you expect your team to behave. At first glance, that may sound simple enough. But if you can truly master integrity, you will find that it changes whole teams and even whole organizations for the better.

 

To Conclude

So overall leadership may be something that one is born with but that doesn’t mean you cannot learn and acquire skills to become one. You can start by taking one of our tests to know yourself better, which can help you develop your skills. Till then cheers and be awesome!

Resilience-in-The-Workplace

Resilience in The Workplace

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Resilience in the workplace

When people do not manage effectively, it leads to high levels of workplace stress. That stress can lead to several negative personal and performance outcomes. Some professional teams work in highly stressful settings and are at risk of conditions such as burnout, depression, and anxiety.

Some individuals are not very much affected by workplace stress and the related negative consequences. Such people are known as resilient. Studies have found relationships between levels of individual resilience and specific negative consequences such as burnout, fatigue, and compassion. A study shows that occupational stress is a worldwide  observable aspect that is related with several inimical consequences such as negative physical and mental health outcomes, and another study shows that high levels of workplace stress can cause the number of negative organizational outcomes such as impaired work performance and high turnover

 

WHAT IS PSYCHOLOGICAL RESILIENCE?

 

Psychological resilience means the potential of a person to rebound, to recover, bounce-back, and adjust or even thrive after a misfortune. It is the caliber of a person to come out or bounce back from a difficult or thriving situation

It is a measure of multi-level perspective and not dependent on a single construct. These components include optimism, self-esteem, personal competence, social competence, problem-solving skills, self-efficacy, social resources, insight, independence, creativity, humor, control, hardiness, family cohesion, spiritual influences, and initiative.

Factors affecting resilience

  1. Neuroticism
  2. Mindfulness
  3. Self-efficacy
  4. Coping

NEUROTICISM

Neuroticism is one of the major personality traits out of five traits in the study of psychology. Basically, it is the extent to which a person experiences this world as unsafe, threatening and distressing. Any individual who scores high on neuroticism is more likely to be moody and to experience such feelings as anxiety, worry, fear, anger, and loneliness.

Many studies have established a strong relationship with psychological resilience. Apparently,  higher levels of neuroticism signify low levels of psychological resilience.

 

MINDFULNESS

mind-wandering

 

We spend our days by not paying a lot of attention to things. It can be easy to rush through life without stopping to notice much. By living in the present and putting more attention to the present moment – to your own thoughts and feelings, and to the world around you – can improve your mental wellbeing. Some people call this type of awareness “mindfulness”.

A recent study investigated the relationship between the level of mindfulness, workplace variables (workload, co-worker support) and burnout. They found that a low level of mindfulness was the most prominent predictor of burnout, over and above the variance explained by workplace factors. Even studies are proposing that mindfulness is an important characteristic of people who score high on resilience.

 

SELF-EFFICACY

self efficacy Source – educationcloset.com

 

Self-efficacy is an individual’s belief that he or she can perform a selected task.

Employees with higher levels of self-efficacy tend to have lower levels of anxiety, better coping skills and lower intentions of leaving their workplace. So if a person scores low on anxiety and posses better-coping skills then these set of people will show higher output to the given task. So, Self-efficacy is a sign of psychological resilience.

 

COPING

copingSource – whatsyourgrief.com

It is a process of adjustment following an adverse event. Coping strategies help in solving two types of issues. One is problem-focused, which addresses the practicalities of a situation. Second is emotion-focused, which reduces the psychological and emotional impact of a stress.

Positive reframing and support seeking coping mechanism lead to greater job satisfaction.

The use of active coping is positively associated with psychological resilience and a mediator of the relationship between self-efficacy and individual resilience in the workplace.

 

 Conclusion

Workplace stress has serious implications for the quality of an employee’s work and their general psychological functioning. 

Psychological resilience is an important tool for individuals as it helps promote healthy psychological adjustment for employees in high-stress work settings.

So, professionals rich in psychological resilience can work and function in a better way and can fetch better results for any organization.

Myers-Briggs Test Indicator

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator or MBTI

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Continuing our series on personality tests this post focuses on one of the most popular of them all, the Myers-Briggs Indicator or MBTI

 

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

 

Are you an ENTP or INTJ or ESFJ? Now, before you think we at Brainpundits have lost our, well, brains, these are some of personality type tests that MBTI has to offer. MBTI or Myers-Briggs Indicator is one of the most popular personality type tests out there. Around 2 million people around the world take it annually. It is estimated that around 89 of the Fortune 100 uses this test to hire and manage employees.

It has also inspired various quizzes online based on characters from popular culture like Game of Thrones, Harry Potter etc. But despite its massive popularity and usage among the various organization around the world, the overall psychology community do no deem it to be scientific at all.

This article will trace the origins of the test, explain what is it about and also show the controversy behind it.

Origins

In order to tell the story of this test, we will need to go back to one of the major figures in the field of psychology, Carl G. Jung. In 1921, Jung published one of his famous books Psychological Types. In this book, Jung tried to give a formulation of personality types based on his observations. He argued there may exist two personality attitudes: Extroversion and Introversion, and four functions or orientation: Thinking, Sensation, Intuition, and Feeling.

In 1923, one of the contributors to test, Katharine Briggs found this book and made it her gospel. Katharine Briggs was a stay at home mom who had studied horticulture. Jung’s book made a remarkable impact on her and she thought of using the ideas from the book and implementing them in day to day life. A couple of decades later, her daughter Isabel Briggs Myers, an aspiring fictional writer, with help from a management consultant Edward N. Hay and her mother debuted the test in 1943.

What is the Test about?

Katharine and Isabel expanded Jung’s original conception into 16 personality types with four binary categories.

Extroversion – Introversion; Intuition – Sensing; Thinking – Feeling; Judging – Perception

The original test had 93 questions, which haven’t changed much in today’s times, and based on the questionnaire, the test groups people into 16 discrete personality types. The details of these types can be seen in the image below.

 

 

The Controversy

While it sounds all hunky and dory but when you start scratching the surface cracks start to appear. The problem arises with the test that is there is no scientific validity for the test. A study showed that around 50 percent of the people end up having different results on the test, the second time they take it, that too after just a few weeks later.  Other studies have also argued that the test is indeed ineffective in predicting how certain types maybe successful at different jobs.

Interestingly, all the major scientific journals of psychology have no research published based on this test. Whatever few articles that are available on this test are there to point out to the flaws that it has. While on the issue of the Rorschach test, as discussed in a previous article, the scientific community was divided. But on Myers-Briggs Test Indicator, they seem to be united in agreement that this test does not have any scientific validity.

 

Why is it Popular then?

 

Then you may wonder if this test is not scientifically valid and the majority of psychologists do not use this, then why is it so popular? The answer lies in a phenomenon called the Forer effect and effective product management by then Edward Hay. After its debut, the test was effectively marketed by Edward Hay, who had connections with General Electric, Bell Telephone and most importantly National Bureau of Statistics. Through his connections, the test got employed in early major corporations. Now, as mentioned earlier, the test is not only employed by various private companies in the world but also various government organizations.

The Forer effect, or the Barnum effect, refers to the psychological phenomenon where individuals are prone to believe that personality depictions apply specifically to them, but in reality, the descriptions are for everyone. A perfect example of this is your daily horoscopes. That is why most descriptions of the personality in Myers-Briggs Test Indicator are positive in their nature. So, one can even say this test – and different inspirations from it – is for entertainment, which is absolutely fine.

MBTI Personality Test

To Conclude

 

The dilemma comes, as Merve Emre argues in her new book argues, that in theory there are clear ethical violations how CAPT and CPP peddle this test without having any scientific basis as reliable; but in practice, many of the companies and organizations that use this test clearly have different definitions of ethics.

So, even though the Myers-Briggs Test Indicator has had a controversial stint with the scientific community. It still enjoys the support of the people at large. And it cannot be denied that this test still remains one of the most popular ones out there.

rorschach test

The Rorschach Test

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Continuing our series on personality tests this post focuses on one of the most culturally famous of them all, the Inkblot test or the Rorschach Test

 

The Rorschach test is one of the most famous and also one of the controversial tests that the field of psychology has produced. Once touted as the X-Ray of the soul, the test is now a part of cultural history as it has become a reference point in various shows and movies. There’s even a comic book character based named Rorschach with an inkblot as a mask. If you haven’t heard of it or know little of, not to worry as through this post I will enlighten you about it.

 

Origins

 

Hermann Rorschach (1884-1922) was the mind behind the origin of the test. He was a young psychiatrist from Switzerland and was hailed a prodigy. He had worked along with Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung during his early years.

The idea of the test came to him from a children’s board game called Klecksography, a collection of inkblot cards. He published the test in 1921, sadly though Hermann Rorschach died less than a year before he could witness the popularity of his test.

 

What is the test about?

 

The test is a strange and a very open-ended test, in which there are 10 cards with strange markings in them. They don’t have any specific pattern to them and there is no expected answer to these inkblot cards. It’s a visual task which aims at self-projection.

Which basically means when you respond to one of these cards you are projecting your unconscious thoughts. It is a form of, what psychologists call, a projective test. By telling what they see in the inkblot, people actually telling about their views, their personality and how they project meaning and perceive reality.

 Rorschach TestImage Source – Wikipedia

 

Example of an Inkblot

 

In the image, you see an example of an inkblot card from the test. Predicted answers to this inkblot range from animal skin or skin rugs. The card signifies, according to psychologists, a threatening figure in order to elicit a sentiment of authority.

There are nine other inkblot cards like these and each is shown in a particular order according to the requirement of the test.

Recommended – 10 Hacks to Improve Your Memory That Actually Works

 

Supporters of the Test

 

The test, however, is not without controversy as it has divided the whole community of psychologists. Some support the test as an important asset for a psychiatrist while the critics question its very validity.

The supporters argue that the test gives you a remarkable insight into an individual’s personality and may uncover hidden malice.

For example, on IQ tests or other standardized tests most troubled people can keep it together but studies have shown that the inkblot test reveals a different side to them.

Some psychiatrists have argued that while other tests may fail to reveal much but the Rorschach may be able to raise some red flags. For them, the 10 inkblots are sensitive and accurate tools to map how the mind works. Various researchers have used the Rorschach test to see early onsets of Alzheimer’s, which is a remarkable study.

 

Critics of the Test

 

The critics, however, question the very validity of the test. The question of validity rests with the idea what answers are reasonable, and more importantly, who decides what is reasonable. This is at the heart of the arguments against the usage of this test. The critics consider the test pseudoscience which should not be used in any kind of examination.

Other points of criticism are the implicit bias of the testing psychologist who may, unconsciously, project his/her beliefs in the responses. Some have questioned the very nature of the methodology involved measuring the personality. Finally, some have argued that the test not reliable for example, two different testers might end up getting two different personality profiles for the same individual.

 

In Conclusion

 

Despite various controversies and critics of the test, the Rorschach test is still one of the most popular tests. It is still considered valid in the court of law, various medical insurance companies in the West considers its results valid. The test is also a cultural reference point. For example, Andy Warhol, on the creative geniuses of the 20th century, created a painting based on the test. Other examples include the comic book character from Watchmen, mentioned earlier.

So, suffice it to say the Rorschach test has made a cultural mark on the society and even though it still polarises the psychiatrist community, it is still one of the most influential personality tests out there.

In the next series on Personality tests, I will trace the origins and the story of another popular personality test, the Myers-Briggs Indicator. Till then be cheers and keep exploring yourself at Brainpundits!

De-stigmatising Psychology in India

Reading Time: 5 minutes

In a country like India, seeking a counselor’s help is seen as a stigma. In this article, we try to trace the reasons why and also give tips to help yourself get better.

Just like how DNA makes an individual unique, neurons in our brain generate connections to make our thought process unique. This is called the Human Connectome. Each individual perceives, analyses and solves a given situation differently. Psychology helps us understand this behavior. But what is psychology?

Psychology is a science which helps understand the mental functions of an individual in different situations. However, there are stigmas attached to this term. Many people take this as a negative term. Especially in a country like India, where free advice is easily available so when people pay to get advice it is rejected by society. What people don’t understand is that it is not only ok to go to a counselor or a psychologist but sometimes necessary as well. It helps one understand themselves better. In our country, it is considered a taboo, so no one is ready to talk openly about their feelings and don’t want to take help of others.

 

 

This is not our fault we were brought up in this way. India, being a community-driven society, tend to focus on solving issues within the community or the family. So, earlier issues of depression or other psychological issues that used to exist were dealt with, with limited understanding of the problem, within the family or the community. But since the advent of the nuclear family setup, the issues are not being addressed.

Reasons Why People Hesitate to Seek Help

To understand why people don’t seek help, we need to look at the following reasons. The common link between them is our very social life.

  1. The Paagal hai Statement: Most people believe if anyone is going to a psychiatrist or a counselor, then he/she will be labeled as crazy or mentally unstable. The most common thing that we hear is “paagal hai”.
  2. Being Too Dependent – In some cases, people will think that you are dependent on others.
  3. Lacking Confidence – In other cases, some people don’t want to come across as a person who doesn’t live one’s life on one’s terms and needs others to help them.
  4. Requiring Approval – Sometimes we feel we need the approval of others in our life in making decisions.
  5. Overthinking – If we share our concern with others then it is believed that we are overthinking about stuff. Ignorance by others and the fear of not being understood or taken seriously forces us to gulp down our feelings and stay quiet.
  6. Embarrassment – Sometimes people don’t’ go to escape embarrassment. The fear of being judged by other person is also a reason that people don’t share. They are afraid to tell their story of failures.

 

Consequences Can Be Dire 

The generation that suffers the most due to this hesitation, due to stigma set by the society, is the present generation, the millennials. Due to a generation gap, they are not able to talk openly with their parents. Parents try to be supportive but they force their child into a profession in which they are not interested in. Parents are also not at fault completely, many career options which are not conventional are rejected by society. So, at this stage, they should consult a counselor who can help their child in a meaningful way and make them understand their strengths and weaknesses so that they can make a better decision.

Lack of communication among parents and their children can send the child into depression. Depression again is a major problem prevailing in our society. Certain parameters of happiness are predefined. We do what we are told to do, this does not help us find our interests, which in turn makes us frustrated and depressed. But, it is the need of the hour that people understand that depression is not a mental illness it is just a state of mind. Bear in mind that I am not talking about severe clinical depression as it is different from situational depression, which I refer to here. But if not treated at the right time it can lead to a severe problem.

And if untreated minor forms of depression could lead to severe clinical depression. There are some cases; where people were consumed so much by depression, that death was the ultimate release. Chester Bennington, Avicii, Robin Williams are some of the examples. All of them had one thing in common and that was depression.

Need for Change

Recently, the film Dear Zindagi, brilliantly portrayed the complexity of the human brain. It was one of the very few made in India that tackled the issue of psychological disorder. In this movie, the protagonist is suffering through a sad phase in life but through a little help from a therapist, she is able to come to peace and look life in a new light.

Social media has also changed the way today’s generation get their information from. They are becoming more informed about the benefits of seeking psychological help thanks to the growing use of social media.

The concept of counseling is still a strange one to many in India. Many good schools hire counselors so that children can share their doubts and problems with someone because not all problems can be shared with parents. We need someone who is mature enough to guide us well. This concept is gaining popularity in big cities as nowadays many workshops are held in school and colleges to spread awareness.

What You Can Do Yourself

Well if you feel that your family or your community is not getting the level of awareness required for helping your issues, there are certain things that you can do yourself in order to help yourself.

  1. Being Vocal – It is imperative that you start being more vocal and expressing your ideas freely and taking the stand for what you believe in. More importantly, get people to listen to you.
  2. Find Like-Minded People – You should try to find people with similar views and try to connect them in order to eradicate negativity and not let others drag you down.
  3. Supporting Others. This might sound easy but it is the most difficult thing to do as it is a basic instinct to judge others. Hearing the problems of a person is sometimes the only therapy that he needs. In some case, listening and supporting others is therapeutic for yourself.
  4. Avoid Unnecessary Things: It would also be better if you started ignoring what’s not necessary and doesn’t help you grow as a person. This will increase your productivity and you will get time to do things that actually make you happy.
  5. Overcoming Failures – It is important to overcome insecurities and understanding that failures are part of life. It is the failure that makes us strong and we are careful in future of not making same the mistakes again.
  6. No One is Perfect – Understanding the fact that nobody is perfect and has some weakness and imperfection, will help you realize your goals more. So, it is fine if you are not excellent in every field.
  7. Support from Parents – Last but not least, parents need to support and believe in their child’s decisions. You are the one your child looks up to, so be a good example. Children should be taught the importance of being more expressive about their feelings.

To Conclude

Finding your niche is necessary to give your best in whatever you are doing. Understanding your psychology can be of great help in this aspect. It is not necessary to fit in the molds made up by society if it doesn’t make you happy. Understanding your psychology is not a one-day task. It takes time and can be done by being supportive and getting support. It is difficult to understand and solve the complexities of the human brain, but one can always try. We at Brainpundits are also here to help you as you can explore yourself by taking one of our numerous free tests. So, what are you waiting for? Take care and start exploring yourself!

How to Read a book for exam?

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Books are gateways to understanding language, exploring ideas, improving linguistic cognition and increasing imagination. However, many times we forget what we read. We all wish that we could get more out what we read. This becomes apparent when we either should read a book to prepare for test or work on self-development goals or improve ourselves.

Recommended – 10 Hacks to Improve Your Memory That Actually Works

Be it any case we all wish to get more out books we read. Here some hacks to get most of what we read in the first time itself.

 

1.    Reading a book entails most importantly what you want to get out it. So, ask yourself what are your topics and areas of concern which you have currently embarked on. Write it down on a piece of paper. If you don’t know where to begin a good place to start would be previous years’ test papers.

2.    Read the preface and index very carefully to see topics and areas of concern are matching list you just wrote. Now, mark the topics given in the list in the book you are wanting to read.

3.    Understand what must be done first. Number the list in form of priority of what must be done first. If no such priority is there then read from the initial topic that is marked in the book.

 

4.    Read with pencil not marker as with a pencil you can write on the book there itself. Underline what you feel is important for your exam. If terms aren’t explained well then write meanings of those terms, there itself between spaces given in the text. One can use arrows to highlight super important terms or concepts.

5.    Use of stick notes to highlight important topics or highlight important chapters. This essentially allows one to visit the important chapters and concepts during exam time.

6.    Make short notes of the facts and details which are useful for examination. So that your revision of facts and details are crisp and fast which will allow you to retain more facts.

7.    After going through the book one time. You now have underlined what is important, written important details in between text, used stick notes to highlight important concepts and chapters and written most of the facts as short notes. Now you must prioritize and revise accordingly.

 

This is how your book should be looking after reading it:

 

This will allow you ease of access and strengthen your ability to grasp more out of the book your reading. Next time when you’re in need to revise or go back to book to look for essential information, you can easily get it as you know where to find what you are looking for.

 

Recommended – 13 Easiest Ways to Cope with Stress

rethinking personality types

Rethinking Personality Types

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Tagline: A recent study by researchers at Northwestern University have come up with a scientific understanding of personality types.

 

Rethinking Personality Types

 

The history of personality type tests has always had a complex relationship with the overall scientific community. From the infamous Rorschach inkblot test, of which the validity has always been contested  to the very famous Myers-Briggs Test, which is used by various corporate organizations to hire future employees, which is also considered unscientific by the majority of the scientific community tells us something about the conflict that personality type tests have had with the scientific community.

 

Change Has Come

 

But this all may change as researchers at Northwestern University have just published a paper, using alternative computational methods to analyze data from over a million respondents, arguing that there exist four types of personality based on five-character traits. One of the researchers from the study says with this research personality types place from self-help books can move to scientific journals.

 

The Findings

The study finds after analyzing the data that there exist four types of personality. They are Average, Reserved, Role Models, and Self-Centred. These personalities are based on five-character traits, namely: Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness. Just to give you what the researchers mean by these concepts, here, in brief, are their explanations.

 

Character Types

Neuroticism

It refers to a person’s tendency to feel negative emotions (anger, worry or sadness) as well being sensitive in interpersonal relations

Extraversion

It signifies a person’s tendency to be social, talkative and enjoy the company of others and also have domineering personality.

Openness

It refers to a person’s tendency to appreciate and accommodate new ideas, values, arts, feelings and behaviors

Agreeableness

It signifies a person’s tendency to easily agree with others rather than assert one’s own decisions and opinions

Conscientiousness

It refers to a person’s tendency to follow orders, rules and be cautious with most things in their life.

 

Personality Types

Average

According to this research, Average people are high in Neuroticism and Extraversion but low in openness, which basically means they are more likely to be social, neurotic and their emotions can vary. But on the other hand, they may not be open to new ideas. The study argues that a typical person would fall under this category.

Reserved

The Reserved personality type people, this research argues, are emotionally stable but not neurotic or even open-minded. They are also not that much social and tend to agree with others. They also tend to follow norms and are cautious when dealing with things.

Role Models

The third personality type, according to this research, is Role Models. These people not only are emotionally stable but also, they are open to new ideas, are highly social and enjoy the company of others, and also are very hard working. They are generally good leaders and people you can depend upon.

Self-Centred

The fourth personality type, this research argues, is Self-Centred. These people are extremely social and also have a very domineering personality. They are not open to new ideas and are less likely to agree with others and follow their own thought process.

 

What This Means

Well, you may be thinking what this research and its findings mean for the future of personality type tests and its engagement with the scientific community. For starters, the research finally brings personality types into the rubric of scientific research. One of the researchers says that the overall contribution of the research is the methodology part of the paper to the scientific community as it bridges the gap between personality types and ways of measuring them. It also means the personality types may be finally getting their undue recognition among the scientific community and this research could usher in a revolution in personality development research.

In case if you are interested and want to get your nerd on then here’s the link to the research. Till then, cheers and be awesome and keep exploring yourself at Brainpundits!