joi, 17 noiembrie 2022

50 Psychology Classics by Tom Butler-Brown - 10 out of 10

 50 Psychology Classics by Tom Butler-Brown

10 out of 10



The under signed has been elated by reading this wonderful book nine years ago and I was so much exhilarated that I went on to read as many of the books included as I could find – though in a few cases the interest was limited to non-extant, in the cases of Freudian psychology, the opus looking at the psychology of children, Piaget – and some samples and links have been included from the notes that I have written on the works of Gladwell, Seligman, Berne, Daniel Gilbert and some that are not included in the 50 classics, such as Stefan Klein and his Happiness Formula, Sonja Lyubomirsky and The How of Happiness


Stumbling On Happiness by Harvard Professor Daniel Gilbert – there are some myths we believe in, regarding what makes us happy and one of the most common is that we think if we were to move to California, a Pacific or Caribbean island (not Cuba or Haiti though) we would be so happy…There is a phenomenon called Hedonic Adaptation which explains why, once we get there, we are not as happy as we thought, for we adapt to the pleasant Weather (unless, of course, there is a hurricane coming or a long period of draughts, serious wild fires, as California has experienced for so many years) and start noticing the problems, traffic, power cuts and ultra expensive energy (and almost anything else) on the islands… 


Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi is the co-founder of Positive Psychology and acclaimed author of Flow the classic from which we learn the conditions for Flow aka Peak Experience – getting involved in activities where we are challenged and furthermore Challenges Meet Expectations, we have Constant Feedback, we feel we Are In Control, One Must Have Clear Goals, Being in the Present, Altered Sense of Time and Egolessness are required and then we arrive into The Zone, we reach the zenith of maximum intensity…


Malcolm Gladwell has been included with his quintessential Blink – The Power of Thinking Without Thinking, which explains how Thin Slicing Theory Works, how we form opinions, take decisions in seconds and that often saves lives, in the case of medicine and in other fields, but it can also lead to tragic mistakes (the aircraft carrier Vincennes and the shooting down of an Iranian commercial aircraft is mentioned, together with the Diallo case) and we read about research involving CEOs of top Fortune 500 companies and the way their height demonstrates the notion that we do act upon opinions formed in the Blink of an Eye

Eric Berne has written the fabulous Games People Play and one of the most common games is IIWFY aka If It Weren’t For You, in which one spouse accuses the other of blocking their way to catharsis, when in fact they do not want to take that road in the first place, and probably had chosen their partner to have someone to blame – this is clearly a simplistic approach and it should take another of the classics to explain why I am taking these lines and (mis)interpret them in my own way, drawing conclusions which are not there


Harry Harlow is listed with The Nature of Love and though the purpose of his experiments was wonderful, hell is paved with good intentions’ and in the process of proving the importance of love in human life, many monkeys have been tortured, made to suffer tin the name of research, babies being taken away from their mothers and given cloth surrogates, or just wire contraptions…I have read two books that somehow relate to Harry Harlow’s experiments , We Are Completely Besides Ourselves and Love In Infant Monkeys


Nathaniel Branden has given audiences the chance to learn about self –esteem, with his quientessential The Six Pillars of Self – Esteem wherein he looks at what we can do to keep ourselves to a higerh level of appreciation, if we do not love ourselves, who will, one exercise that is also amusing would have us look at ourselves in the mirror, in the morning and say ‚i love and accpet myslef completly’ or something similar...

Nathaniel Branden is also the autor of The Psychological Effects of Religion another magnum opus which conlcudes that the effects of religion are bad, having an omiscent entity looking over our shoulder permanently, ready to punish any infringemnet, taking us to painful places for masturbating as a tenegaer, in our older years for instance can caus edamage, and there is the notion that this life is dsipensable, in view of the eternal one, which would cause so many to appreciate the only cance they have less than they must...


Though not included, i would like just to mention here some of the magicians that reading this book can lead audiences to meet, Magister Ludi like Sonja Lyubomirsky, with her Myths of Happiness, Ed Diener, and especially the Harvard Professor Tal Ben-Shahar, who has the most popular lectures in the history of Harvard


John Gottman


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