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Beautiful Minds

Beautiful Minds


Insights into intelligence, creativity, and the mind
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    Scott Barry Kaufman Scott Barry Kaufman is Scientific Director of The Imagination Institute in the Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania. Follow on Twitter @sbkaufman.
  • Introducing The Psychology Podcast with Dr. Scott Barry Kaufman

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    It’s my great pleasure to introduce The Psychology Podcast with Dr. Scott Barry Kaufman, where we give you insights into the mind, brain, behavior and creativity. Each episode will feature a guest who will stimulate your mind, and give you a greater understanding of your self, others, and the world we live in. Hopefully, we’ll also provide a glimpse into [...]

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    Resources to help your child with ADHD flourish

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    In my prior post (“The Creative Gifts of ADHD“), I argued that there are a heck of a lot of creative possibilities that remain dormant in children with ADHD due to the way we treat such children in an educational context. Since that post, I’ve received an outpouring of emails from parents who told me [...]

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    The Creative Gifts of ADHD

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    “Just because a diagnosis [of ADHD] can be made does not take away from the great traits we love about Calvin and his imaginary tiger friend, Hobbes. In fact, we actually love Calvin BECAUSE of his ADHD traits. Calvin’s imagination, creativity, energy, lack of attention, and view of the world are the gifts that Mr. [...]

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    Is Kindness Physically Attractive?

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    One of the most robust findings in social psychology is the beauty-is-good stereotype: physically attractive people are perceived and treated more positively than physically unattractive people [1]. But here’s the thing: I have definitely met attractive people who went from hot to not the second they opened their mouths! Vice-versa, some people are so kind [...]

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    What Kind of Introvert Are You?

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    Are you an introvert? It depends on which book you read. Here’s a sampling of the various conceptualizations of introversion in pop culture [1]: Preference for quiet, minimally stimulating environments: Quiet by Susan Cain Preference for concentration and solitude: The Introvert’s Way by Sophia Dembling Rechargeable battery: The Introvert Advantage by Marti Olsen Laney Thoughtful-introspective: [...]

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    The Real Link Between the Psychopathology Spectrum and the Creativity Spectrum

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    Plato once noted that “creativity is a divine madness, a gift from gods.” Romantic notions of the link between mental illness and creativity still appear prominently in popular culture. But ever since scientists started formally investigating the link, there has been intense debate. Some of the most highly cited studies on the topic have been [...]

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    Robin Williams’s Comedic Genius Was Not a Result of Mental Illness, but His Suicide Was

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    This blog appears in the In-Depth Report Genius, Suicide and Mental Illness: Insights into a Deep Connection Of course, the media is writing a lot today about the link between mental illness and creativity in light of Robin Williams’ suicide. Here’s the thing: Williams’ comedic genius was a result of many factors, including his compassion, [...]

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    What Predicts NBA Success?

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    “To an outsider watching Pop Herring’s basketball tryout in November 1978, it would not have been obvious that the gym at Laney High in Wilmington, N.C., held a player destined to become the greatest in the universe. He was still Mike Jordan then, not Michael Jordan, just another sophomore guard among 50 eager boys competing [...]

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    Talent versus Practice: Why Are We Still Debating This?

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    When I was a little kid, my mom and grandmom were having a heated argument in the front of the car. At one point I interrupted them, and with exasperation said: “You know, Mom, Grandmom is really right.” Then I turned to my grandmom and said, “I think my Mom is right too.” They were shocked, because [...]

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    Introducing… The Imagination Institute!

    The Imagination Institute

    One of humanity’s most precious resources is imagination. Our ability to overcome the constraints of the present environment and travel to distant places and hopeful futures all in the mind is a skill that is hugely neglected in today’s society. With our intense focus on enabling students and employees to master what is, we are [...]

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