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Tag Archives: Psychology

Lost your motivation to work out? Here’s why – and how to get back on track

Motivation can steadily fade over time. New Africa/ Shutterstock Ian Taylor, Loughborough University In the early phases of lockdown, the streets were teeming with runners and living rooms were a blur of uncoordinated star jumps and lunges. In fact, physical activity levels in the UK peaked around mid-to-late May, just before lockdown restrictions began to be eased. Now, after months …

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What psychology can tell us about why some people don’t wear masks – and how to change their minds

Marina Biryukova/Shutterstock Helen Wall, Edge Hill University; Alex Balani, Edge Hill University, and Derek Larkin, Edge Hill University While the world is eagerly waiting for COVID-19 vaccines to bring an end to the pandemic, wearing a mask to help prevent viral transmission has become more or less mandatory globally. Though many people embrace mask wearing and adhere to public health …

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Spotting liars is hard – but our new method is effective and ethical

Guilty? The length of your answer may give it away. Motortion Films/Shutterstock Cody Porter, University of Portsmouth Most people lie occasionally. The lies are often trivial and essentially inconsequential – such as pretending to like a tasteless gift. But in other contexts, deception is more serious and can have harmful effects on criminal justice. From a societal perspective, such lying …

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Coronavirus dreams: how anger, sadness and fear crept in during lockdown – new research

Lockdown isn’t easy. Julia Lockheart DreamsID com, Author provided Mark Blagrove, Swansea University The COVID-19 pandemic has changed nearly every aspect of our lives. Our dreams are no different. Soon after the first lockdowns started, people reported having more dreams than before, with different content. This was explained by the fact that many people were sleeping for longer, and waking …

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The meaning of life – a psychologist’s view

Shutterstock/LedyX Steve Taylor, Leeds Beckett University The search for meaning in life is a familiar challenge to many of us. Some materialist scientists and philosophers consider it a futile search. Prominent atheist Richard Dawkins, for example, claims that human beings are just “throwaway survival machines” whose only purpose is to survive and replicate genes. Otherwise, the theory goes, there is …

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Is belief in God a delusion?

Hassan Saleh/Unsplash, FAL Ryan McKay, Royal Holloway and Robert Ross, Macquarie University As the pandemic raged in April, churchgoers in Ohio defied warnings not to congregate. Some argued that their religion conferred them immunity from COVID-19. In one memorable CNN clip, a woman insisted she would not catch the virus because she was “covered in Jesus’ blood”. Some weeks later, …

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It’s not just you – work during COVID has become much harder

As if work wasn’t taxing enough, now we had to manage family simultaneously. Charles Deluvio/unsplash Eva Selenko, Loughborough University The pandemic has seriously altered how we work. According to statistics published by the International Labour Organization (ILO) in September 2020, US$35 trillion (£26 trillion) has been lost globally in labour income. There has also been an estimated loss of 17% …

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Six evidenced-based ways to look after your mental health during a second lockdown

How to be resilient when everything feels out of control. Timothy Kuiper/Shutterstock Christian van Nieuwerburgh, University of East London Already experiencing pandemic fatigue, many of us feel ill-prepared for another lockdown. Yet this is what we must do, and maybe not for the last time. The problem is, the pervasive effects of the pandemic and the restrictions imposed as a …

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How to stay socially connected as lockdown returns – according to science

giuseppelombardo/Shutterstock Pascal Vrticka, University of Essex and Philip J. Cozzolino, University of Essex After a fairly relaxed summer, more and more places are bringing back tighter restrictions in response to rising COVID-19 cases, with some even returning to full or near-full lockdowns. We all know that social distancing makes sense: the fewer people we meet (and the further away from …

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When too much news is bad news: is the way we consume news detrimental to our health?

Shutterstock Evita March, Federation University Australia Humans are curious and social creatures by nature. The news helps us make sense of the world around us and connects us with our local, national and international community. So it’s no wonder we’re drawn to it. Objective, legitimate news also keeps us informed, empowering us with knowledge to make balanced decisions. But the …

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