Fat Loss Weight Loss 

The Weight Loss Motivation Bible: How To Program Your Mind For Sustainable Fat Loss

Product Name: The Weight Loss Motivation Bible: How To Program Your Mind For Sustainable Fat Loss Click here to get The Weight Loss Motivation Bible: How To Program Your Mind For Sustainable Fat Loss at discounted price while it’s still available… All orders are protected by SSL encryption – the highest industry standard for online security from trusted vendors. The Weight Loss Motivation Bible: How To Program Your Mind For Sustainable Fat Loss is backed with a 60 Day No Questions Asked Money Back Guarantee. If within the first 60…

Read More
Workout Music 

Dangerous Woman (Workout Remix)

By Th Express Download now from Itunes

Read More
Workout Music 

Dangerous (Remix by Connie Robinson 128 bpm)

By Trippin’ Download now from Itunes

Read More

Take a Deep Breath: Inhaling the Right Way May Improve Your Memory

http://www.judgeweightloss.com/sixpackabs

The place to come for fitness, weight loss, supplement, and just awesome health info.

Thanks for visiting. Enjoy

When it comes to coping with scary or stressful situations, mental health experts have long given a simple piece of advice: Take a deep breath in through the nose, and out through the mouth. Now, new research suggests that this particular breathing technique really does impact brain activity—and can even improve your memory. 

Northwestern University researchers recruited about 100 young adults, some of whom were asked to make snap judgments about facial expressions that flashed quickly across a computer screen. Breathing did affect their performance: When people were inhaling through their noses, they were able to recognize faces expressing fear faster than when they were exhaling. In another test, researchers looked at participants' ability to remember objects flashing on the screen. Here, too, they were more likely to remember objects if they encountered them during inhales, versus during exhales. 

When mouth-breathing, all these effects disappeared.

The new study is the first to show that the rhythm of breathing creates electrical activity in the brain, according to the report, which was published in The Journal of Neuroscience.

Related: 20 Weird Ways Breathing Right Can Improve Your Life

“Our data is preliminary, but exciting,” says lead author Christina Zelano, PhD, assistant professor of neurology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, to Health. “And though it is too preliminary at this stage, it has the potential to lead to some deliberate breathing strategies for cognitive enhancement.”

She says that one of the study’s major findings is that nasal inhaling causes a “dramatic difference” in areas of the brain related to emotional processing (the amygdala) and memory (the hippocampus), compared with exhaling.

Researchers discovered that when you breathe in, you're stimulating neurons in the olfactory cortex, amygdala, and hippocampus, all across the limbic system. 

Related: 12 Unexpected Things that Mess With Your Memory

Future studies on this topic may help explain the well-documented psychological benefits of meditation and focused breathing, says Zelano, which can essentially synchronize brain oscillations across the brain’s emotion center.

The findings may also offer a clue as to why our breathing tends to speed up when we’re scared or panicked. “As a result, you’ll spend proportionally more time inhaling than when in a calm state,” Zelano says. This could affect brain function, she adds, “and result in faster response times to dangerous stimuli in the environment.”

In fact, Zelano thinks we may even be able to use this knowledge to our advantage. “If you’re in a dangerous environment with fearful stimuli, our data indicate that you can respond more quickly if you are inhaling through your nose,” she says.

Related: 9 Foods That May Help Save Your Memory

Of course, this study is just a first step. Whether we can truly use our breath to enhance or control our fear response—or our memory, for that matter—remains to be seen, says Zelano.

Also check out http://healthywithjodi.com

Read More

What To Know About the ‘Flesh-Eating Bacteria’ That Killed a Man in Maryland

www.judgeweightloss.com

The place to come for fitness, weight loss, supplement, and just awesome health info.

Thanks for visiting. Enjoy

Headlines this week about a man who died after contracting a “flesh-eating bacteria” in Ocean City, Maryland, may have you spooked to go near the water, or even near seafood. Michael Funk, 67, began to feel ill within hours of cleaning out crab pots at his beach home, and died just four days later.

Doctors say that a cut on Funk’s leg was exposed to a strand of Vibrio bacteria called Vibrio vulnificus, which lives in warm, coastal waters like Ocean City’s Assawoman Bay. He was diagnosed at the hospital with the infection caused by Vibrio, called vibriosis, and had infected skin removed from around the wound. But the bacteria had already entered his bloodstream. Despite having his leg amputated, Funk did not survive.

His wife told local newspaper The Daily Times that the experience was “like something out of a horror movie,” expressing concern that there had been no warning from Ocean City officials about the bacteria or their risks. (The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is investigating the incident. A public advisory has not been issued, although information about Vibrio can be found on the official state website.)

While tourist season on the Maryland coast is over, there are still plenty of places in the United States where people swim, boat, and catch seafood year-round. So Health spoke with Gabby Barbarite, PhD, a Vibrio researcher at Florida Atlantic University’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution, to find out how much of a risk these bacteria pose to the average person. Here’s what you should know, and how to keep yourself safe.

Vibrio bacteria aren't new

There are about 12 Vibrio species that make people sick, and they've been around for many years. This is likely not the first time you’ve read about them in the news, either. In Florida, at least two people died last year (and at least seven died in 2014) as a result of vibriosis.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vibriosis causes an estimated 100 deaths in the U.S. each year. It also causes an estimated 80,000 illnesses—52,000 of which are from eating contaminated seafood like raw oysters.

Vibrio bacteria live in coastal bodies of salt water or brackish water. They’re found year-round in warm climates like Florida; further north, their levels peak in late summer and early fall, when water is warmest.

“People often ask why we don’t just get rid of the bacteria,” says Barbarite, “but in reality, we’re never going to get rid of it all. What we can do is teach people how they can safely handle seafood and safely spend time in the water.”

RELATED: 12 Germs That Cause Food Poisoning

In most cases, it’s not as scary as it sounds

Vibrio has been dubbed a type of flesh-eating bacteria, thanks to the blistering skin lesions that can spread quickly across the body if an infection isn’t treated. But Barbarite says that term isn’t quite right.

“The words flesh-eating might make you think that if you touch it, it will degrade your skin on contact, and that’s not true,” she says. “You have to have a pre-existing cut—or you have to eat raw, contaminated seafood or chug a whole lot of contaminated water—for it to get into your bloodstream; it can’t break down healthy, intact skin.”

Men over 50 are at higher risk

Almost every case of serious illness or fatality from vibriosis occurs in men over 50, says Barbarite, and most are people with compromised immune systems because of a condition like liver disease, heart disease, or diabetes. (Healthy immune systems are usually able to fight off infections before they become life-threatening. News reports have not identified whether Funk had any pre-existing health conditions.)

“Studies have shown that estrogen can actually combat infections, so that’s why we see it more in males than in females,” says Barbarite. Men also tend to have higher levels of iron, she adds, which the bacteria need to thrive.

Contact with contaminated fish and shellfish is also a risk factor, and crabs are known to carry Vibrio bacteria on their shells. “If that bacteria gets into a cut, it can get into your bloodstream and progress very rapidly,” says Barbarite. “Within 12 hours it could be fatal.”

RELATED: What You Really Need to Know About Brain-Eating Amoebas

Prompt attention is vital

Healthy people don’t need to avoid the water or stay away from seafood, says Barbarite. Still, it's important to keep open wounds away from seawater and raw seafood. If you do get cut in or around a marine environment, wash the area thoroughly, and as soon as possible, with soap and clean water.

“People need to know that if they get cut, to clean it out right away and to seek medical attention within four to five hours if they see redness or swelling,” says Barbarite. Fever and nausea are also red flags that the vibriosis infection has spread to the bloodstream. If caught early enough, treatment with antibiotics can be life-saving.

Climate change may mean more infections

In August, a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggested that warmer ocean temperatures may be fueling the growth of dangerous bacteria—including Vibrio—in northern seas. This could explain an increase in the number of people in Europe (where the study was conducted) getting sick from swimming or eating tainted seafood, say the study authors, and it could make infections more likely in other warm climates as well.  

Read More

Your Healthy Breasts From A to Z

www.judgeweightloss.com

The place to come for fitness, weight loss, supplement, and just awesome health info.

Thanks for visiting. Enjoy

We admit it: We have a love-hate relationship with our breasts. We show em off when they're proud and perky, but freak the second they start to sag. We squeeze them into bras that don't fit, complain if they bob when we jog, and obsess over every little imperfection. But the minute we find a lump or feel a twinge of pain, we realize just how much we want them around—no matter their flaws. That's why we created this A-to-Z Guide to help keep your breasts——and you—healthy.

A: Alcohol

The numbers don't lie: Alcohol is to blame for 11% of all breast cancers, according to data from the United Kingdoms Million Women Study. That's because beer, wine, or cocktails—even just one or two drinks a day—hike your risk, and that risk increases with each additional drink. Scientists are still probing the alcohol-cancer connection but, for now, moderation is a must. “If you don't drink, don't start,” says Susan Love, MD, president of the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation and clinical professor of surgery at UCLA. “If you do, three drinks a week or less is probably OK.”

B: Breast-feeding

Yes, babies are more likely to attend college if they nurse, but what's really surprising: Breast-feeding may save your life. Women's Health Initiative data suggests that moms who breast-feed 12 months or more throughout their lives have less heart disease than women who don't nurse. And a new study shows that women with a family history of breast cancer cut their risks of getting the disease before menopause if they breast-feed their kids.

C: Caffeine

You've heard theres a link between caffeine and breast cancer? The truth: About 200 to 300 milligrams of the stimulant per day—the amount in two to three cups of coffee or (strong) tea, an energy drink or two, or about five diet sodas—probably wont hurt you, says Liz Applegate, PhD, director of sports nutrition at the University of California, Davis. But to be safe, don't overdo it.

D: Dècolletage

There's a simple reason you see freckles, sun spots, and those dreaded vertical wrinkles on your cleavage—youre not using enough sunscreen on the delicate skin there. Baby your bosom with a high SPF, plus a moisturizer, says Amy Taub, MD, a Chicago-area dermatologist and assistant clinical professor at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Try Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer with SPF 30 ($13.99). It offers sun protection and spot-reducing soy.

E: Eat right

Loading up on fruits and veggies and cutting back on fatty meat keep your whole body healthy. But which foods specifically help you fight breast cancer? Recent studies suggest you eat more: Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and bok choy. They contain potential cancer-fighting compounds called isothiocyanates. Fish like salmon, tuna, and trout. They're rich in omega-3s and are a healthier protein source than meat. Bell peppers and broccoli They're full of flavonoids, a powerful good-for-you antioxidant. Kefir yogurt Its a yummy source of vitamin D and healthy bacteria (probiotics).

F: Fit

If you're like most women, you're wearing a bra that doesn't fit right. Blame the fact that your bust measurements change at least six times in your adult life. To make sure you're getting the right support, talk to a fitter in a department or lingerie store, or do your own sizing. Elisabeth Squires, author of Boobs: A Guide to Your Girls, swears by Size Me Up!, a doctor-designed system that measures the width of each breast to more accurately determine cup size. 

G: Genes

Most women who get breast cancer don't carry the harmful gene mutations known as BRCA1 and BRCA2. Women who do (roughly 1 in 500) tend to get cancer under age 50 and may have multiple cases of breast and ovarian cancer in the family. Who should be gene-tested? If relatives (sisters or other women on your moms or dads side) have had breast or ovarian cancer, its most helpful for one of them to be tested before you. Testing costs about $3,000, and most insurers don't cover it. If a mutation doesn't show up, your risk is still higher because of your family history. But if your relative has the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation, your risk could be elevated even more, and you may want to talk with a genetic counselor about your own test.

H: Hormone therapy

If you're on hormone replacement therapy (HRT), its probably for a good reason: The treatment, usually a combo of estrogen and progesterone, can help relieve hot flashes, irritability, and night sweats. But many researchers are now convinced that using combo HRT for five years or more can double your breast cancer risk, which is why women should use the smallest effective dose for the shortest possible time. Fortunately, studies show that within two years of stopping hormones, your breast cancer risk goes back to normal.

I: Inflammatory breast cancer

If you don't know about IBC, you should. The five-year survival rate of this rare but aggressive disease is about half that of regular breast cancer. Symptoms can include redness and painful swelling around the breast; sometimes the skin feels warm and has the texture of an orange. If you have signs, see your doctor right away.

J: Jiggle

Too much jiggling can make you sag: According to one British study, breasts move during exercise up to 8 vertical inches, adding painful pressure on supporting ligaments. Solution: Make sure your sports bra is up to the job. Small-breasted women usually just need a compression, or “uniboob,” bra. If you're large, try encapsulating styles, which surround each breast separately. Champion makes good low-cost running bras, and sportswear companies like Title Nine even offer special rating systems for each bras support level.

K: Know em well

Take a good look in the mirror—is one breast bigger than the other? (That's typical.) Are your nipples inverted? Does anything look or feel different? You need to know your breasts well so you'll notice any changes during your monthly breast self-exam (BSE), which is an important way to catch abnormalities like lumps or swelling.

L: Lumps

The vast majority of breast lumps are benign—and more than 60% of women have fibrocystic, or naturally lumpy, breasts. Still, you should get all lumps and bumps checked, especially if they change. “Women get into trouble when they ignore lumps because they're afraid,” says Joan Bull, MD, director of the Division of Oncology at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston. The doc may recommend an ultrasound, mammogram, or biopsy to figure out what's up.

M: Mammograms

No one likes having her boobs squeezed flat in what feels like a refrigerator door. But its worth it: Early detection from regular mammograms is estimated to reduce the risk of death from breast cancer by at least 15%, according to a recent research review. Are there any downsides to recommended annual screening mammos? A report in the British Medical Journal suggested they could lead to overdiagnosis—detecting tumors that turn out to be harmless—and unnecessary treatment. But experts insist that the benefits far outweigh the potential costs.

N: Nipples

Smooth or bumpy, inverted or standing at attention on a chilly day, nipples seem to have a mind of their own. Together with the surrounding areola, they even change color during and after pregnancy. Here are some of the most common problems and how to, well, nip em in the bud.

O: Ouch!

About 10% of us have breast pain more than five days a month. Usually the ache (also called mastalgia) goes in cycles, since monthly hormone changes can make breasts extra achy. If the pain is unbearable, try tracking when it hurts most. Then talk to your doctor, and, if you're over 35, consider a mammogram. The doc may recommend pain pills, birth control pills (if you're in your 20s), or possibly evening primrose oil, which might bring relief for some women. Talking to your doc may ease your fears, too, since many women worry that breast pain is always a sign of cancer. It isn't.

P: Plastic surgery

Even in a down economy, boob jobs aren't sagging. But a lesser-known surgery is also on the rise: breast reduction. For top-heavy women, the surgery can bring much-needed relief from back, shoulder, and neck pain. If you want breast surgery—to get bigger or smaller—talk to the doc about scarring, healing time, and final appearance, says John Canady, MD, president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

Q: Number-one question to ask your doc: “Are my breasts dense?”

Women with dense breasts are five times more likely to develop breast cancer, Dr. Love of UCLA says, although its unclear why. The only way to find out density is after a mammogram—the info is in the results. Bring it up with your doc after the test or have the report mailed to you.

R: Rest 

One more reason to get your sleep: Getting enough zzzs may help protect you from cancer. In a recent study of nearly 24,000 Japanese women, those who slept six hours or less each night were 62% more likely to have breast cancer than the women who slept seven hours. Researchers think that the sleep hormone melatonin seems to regulate the release of estrogen.

S: Soy

Soy contains phytoestrogens, chemicals similar to estrogen. Docs say soy has many benefits, if you get it in natural forms like edamame. But concentrated forms found in supplements may be harmful—especially if youre at high risk for breast cancer, says Applegate, PhD, of UC Davis.

T: Tomosynthesis

Watch for the looming debut of this new digital imaging system, which allows doctors to slice and dice super-clear 3D pictures of the breast, while applying less pressure to your boobs than standard mammos (hooray!). Early research shows the new technique may more accurately spot tumors, especially in very dense breasts.

U: Underwires are dangerous (and other myths)

Relax—, your sexy new number from Victoria's Secret wont give you cancer. Experts say the notion that underwires trap toxins just doesn't hold up. Ditto for antiperspirants, living near power lines, and being hit in the chest. Theres no evidence that any of these things causes breast cancer, Dr. Love of UCLA says.

V: Vaccine

Stimuvax, a vaccine currently in testing, may help women who have inoperable breast cancer live longer. The drug is designed to juice up the immune system so it can kill malignant cells. Its also being eyed for lung, prostate, and colon cancers.

W: Weight

 

Women who gain 55 pounds or more after age 18 have nearly 1 1/2 times the risk of breast cancer compared with those who keep their weight steady. But losing the weight substantially lowers risk as you age.

X: X-Rays

Radiation can cause cancer. That's why doctors say that younger women and girls should avoid unnecessary X-rays (a typical X-ray administers radiation at a higher dose than a mammogram). If your doctor recommends an X-ray for anything, ask how having it will change your treatment plan. If it won't, reconsider.

Y: Yoga

To keep “the girls” from sagging, Health expert Sara Ivanhoe, creator of the Yoga on the Edge DVD, recommends this Plank Sequence: Start with hands and knees on a mat, hands directly under shoulders and knees below hips. Firm your abs to support your lower back; extend right leg backward, curl toes and place them and on the ground; repeat with left leg. (Your body should be in a straight line from your head to your heels.) Hold for 5 full breaths. On an exhale, slowly lower yourself to the floor, keeping your elbows tucked in. Your chest and belly should touch the floor at the same time. On an inhale, push back to lean on your hands and knees; exhale into plank, hold for a full inhale, then exhale and lower again, then up into plank. Repeat 5 times.

Z: Zero!

That's the number of new breast cancer cases we all hope to see in our lifetimes—, and a project launched by the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation and Avon Foundation for Women may get us there. The Love and Avon Army of Women's mission: Recruit 1 million women to participate in life-saving research. Sign up online at ArmyOfWomen.org.

 

Read More

Why Is Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease Spreading at Florida State University?

www.judgeweightloss.com

The place to come for fitness, weight loss, supplement, and just awesome health info.

Thanks for visiting. Enjoy

A viral infection known as hand, foot, and mouth disease is sickening students at Florida State University and other schools around the country. The illness—which spreads through contact with bodily fluids or contaminated surfaces—can cause a rash, fever, blisters in and around the mouth, and painful sores on the hands, feet, and buttocks.

Hand, foot, and mouth disease is usually seen in young children, and outbreaks are often linked to daycare centers. But in the last month, it’s been reported at high schools in Indiana, Vermont, and New Jersey.

The University of Colorado at Boulder also experienced several cases on campus in August. And NBC News reports Florida State University (FSU) has seen 22 cases so far this semester.

While hand, foot, and mouth disease can sound—and look—scary, it’s not usually dangerous, says Nadia Qureshi, MD, pediatric infectious disease specialist at Loyola Medicine in Maywood, Illinois. It can be quite uncomfortable, though, and usually lasts five to seven days. There’s no cure and no vaccine to prevent it, so the best treatment is staying hydrated and taking over-the-counter medicine for pain and fever.

The most common cause of hand, foot, and mouth disease is the coxsackievirus, which spreads just like the common cold or flu. Dr. Qureshi says that outbreaks among older children and adults are rare, but not entirely surprising.

“In the past couple of years we’ve seen a new strain of the virus that causes a more severe and more atypical presentation of symptoms, and it does affect children as well as adults,” she says. “And a college dorm is the perfect place for it to spread: People are touching doorknobs, sharing things, living in close proximity to each other, and it’s easy to pass the infection back and forth.”

RELATED: Health Hazards in College Dorms

The new strain, a natural evolution of the virus, tends to cause a more widespread rash and more painful blisters. But even this form rarely requires medical intervention, except in the case of very young children who have trouble swallowing because of painful blisters in their mouths. In very rare cases, says Dr. Qureshi, the coxsackievirus has been linked to serious brain or heart complications.

According to WCTU TV, FSU administration has speculated that the outbreak may be due to a sewage spill during the recent Hurricane Hermine, or to a related electricity outage that prohibited laundry from being done and allowed germs to spread. 

To help prevent new cases, FSU is sanitizing all public spaces on campus, and has advised all living facilities on campus to sanitize their residences, as well. They’ve also encouraged frequent hand washing and the use of hand sanitizers. (CU Boulder also warned students working in science labs that the coxsackievirus can be especially harmful to rodents, and urges them to take “extra care not to spread the disease.”)

Those are smart steps, says Dr. Qureshi. “If you want to avoid it, the most important thing to do is to wash your hands frequently with soap and water, avoid touching your face and your mouth as much as possible, and avoid close contact with someone who has it,” she says. People who’ve had hand, foot, and mouth disease as children don’t seem to have much immunity to the virus, she adds, especially to this relatively new strain.

RELATED: 6 Health Hacks Every College Freshman Should Know

People can continue to transmit the virus for several weeks after their symptoms are gone, she says, but only through saliva or fecal matter. “If you practice basic good hygiene and you no longer have a fever, you should be fine,” she says. “Just stay away from kissing and sharing cups for a while.”

Read More

Don’t Worry, Be Gloomy: Negative Feelings Have Benefits Too

www.judgeweightloss.com

The place to come for fitness, weight loss, supplement, and just awesome health info.

Thanks for visiting. Enjoy

It’s been 53 years since the smiley face—that bright yellow circle with the schematic grin and black-dot eyes—first appeared.

Hundreds of millions of “Have a Nice Day” buttons, T-shirts, and coffee mugs later, it’s as iconic as the red, white, and blue. (And why not? After all, the “pursuit of happiness” is front and center in America’s Declaration of Independence.) 

In the digital age, the smiley face morphed into the emoticons and emojis that pop up everywhere. And with each advance—or, some might say, regression—in our consumer culture, in which marketers hustle to fulfill desires we didn’t even know we had, the blissed-out state of Mr. Smiley becomes ever more the Holy Grail, the organizing principle of our existence. 

Wait a minute. Isn’t happiness why we’re here? Isn’t happiness good for us?

Given a choice, we’d probably prefer to be slaphappy all the time, and there are advantages to that pleasurable state. More “positive” emotion is linked to a lower risk of various psychological illnesses, including depression, anxiety, and borderline personality disorder. 

Positive emotions also drive us to success, help us make better decisions, reduce the risk of disease and allow us to live longer. In some cases, they even help broaden how we think and act by directing our attention to new information and opportunities. They help build vital social, physical and cognitive resources that lead to positive outcomes and affiliations. 

Considering all of this, you might presume happiness ranks right up there with food and sunshine in its contribution to human well-being. But it is possible to have too much of a good thing—to not only be too happy but also experience the wrong types of happiness, and to go about trying to find happiness in the wrong ways and at the wrong time. 

I’m not saying it’s better to go around in a funk all the time. But I hope to get you to keep the pursuit of happiness in perspective, and to see your “negative” emotions in a new and more accepting light. In fact, I strongly submit that describing them as “negative” only perpetuates the myth that these useful feelings are, you know, negative. 

RELATED: How You Answer This Question May Say A Lot About Your Happiness

The downside of happiness

When we’re overly cheerful, we tend to neglect important threats and dangers. It’s not too big a stretch to suggest that being excessively happy could kill you. You might engage in riskier behaviors like drinking too much (“A fifth round on me!”), binge eating (“Mmm, more cake!”), skipping birth control (“What could possibly go wrong?”), and using drugs (“Let’s party!”). An excess of freewheeling giddiness and a relative absence of more sober emotions can even be a marker for mania, a dangerous symptom of psychological illness. 

People with high happiness levels sometimes exhibit behavior that is actually more rigid. That’s because mood affects the way our brains process information. When life is good, and when the environment is safe and familiar, we tend not to think long and hard about anything too challenging—which helps explain why highly positive people can be less creative than those with a more moderate level of positive emotion. 

When we’re in an “everything is awesome!” mood, we’re far more likely to jump to conclusions and resort to stereotypes. The happy more often place disproportionate emphasis on early information and disregard or minimize later details. This typically takes the form of the halo effect, in which, for example, we automatically assume that the cute guy we’ve just met at the party is kind, just because he wears cool clothes and tells funny jokes. Or we decide that the bespectacled, middle-aged man with a briefcase is more intelligent or reliable, say, than the 22-year-old blonde wearing hot pink Juicy Couture shorts. 

Our so-called negative emotions encourage slower, more systematic cognitive processing. We rely less on quick conclusions and pay more attention to subtle details that matter. 

(OK, the guy is hot, and he seems into you, but why is he hiding his wedding-ring hand behind his back?) Isn’t it interesting that the most famous fictional detectives are notably grumpy? And that the most carefree kid in high school is rarely valedictorian? 

“Negative” moods summon a more attentive, accommodating thinking style that leads you to really examine facts in a fresh and creative way. It’s when we’re in a bit of a funk that we focus and dig down. People in negative moods tend to be less gullible and more skeptical, while happy folks may accept easy answers and trust false smiles. Who wants to question surface truth when everything is going so well? So the happy person goes ahead and signs on the dotted line. 

The paradox of happiness is that deliberately striving for it is fundamentally incompatible with the nature of happiness itself. Real happiness comes through activities you engage in for their own sake rather than for some extrinsic reason, even when the reason is something as seemingly benevolent as the desire to be happy. 

RELATED: 9 Simple Steps to Happiness

Striving for happiness establishes an expectation and confirms the saying that expectations are resentments waiting to happen. That’s why holidays and family events are often disappointing, if not downright depressing. Our expectations are so high that it’s almost inevitable we’ll be let down. 

In one study, participants were given a fake newspaper article that praised the advantages of happiness, while a control group read an article that made no mention of happiness. Both groups then watched randomly assigned film clips that were either happy or sad. The participants who had been induced to value happiness by reading the article came away from viewing the “happy film” feeling less happy than those in the control group who had watched the same film. Placing too high a value on happiness increased their expectations for how things “should be,” and thus set them up for disappointment. 

In another study, participants were asked to listen to Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring,” a piece of music so discordant and jarring that it caused a riot at its 1913 debut. Some participants were told to “try to make yourself feel as happy as possible” while they listened to the music. Afterward, they evaluated themselves as being less happy compared with a control group that was not chasing Mr. Smiley. 

The aggressive pursuit of happiness is also isolating. In yet another study, the higher the participants ranked happiness on their lists of objectives or goals, the more they described themselves as lonely on daily self-evaluations. 

Happiness also comes in a variety of cultural variations that open up the possibility of being happy in the wrong way. In North America, happiness tends to be defined in terms of personal accomplishment (including pleasure), whereas in East Asia, happiness is associated with social harmony. Chinese Americans prefer contentment, while Americans with European backgrounds prefer excitement. Japanese culture is built around loyalty, with its connection to guilt, whereas American culture embodies more socially disengaged emotions, such as pride or anger. To be happy within a given culture depends more than a little on how in sync your feelings are with that culture’s definition of happiness. 

In short, chasing after happiness can be just as self-defeating as brooding and bottling up your emotions. It’s yet another coping mechanism for discomfort with “negative” emotions and our unwillingness to endure anything even remotely associated with the dark side. 

RELATED: Your Guide to Positive Thinking

Good news about bad moods

While it’s certainly not healthy to constantly stew in negative emotions, there are some positive things that sadness, anger, guilt, or fear can do. 

Help you form arguments. You’re more likely to use concrete and tangible information, be more attuned to the situation at hand and be less prone to making judgment errors, all of which lends an aura of expertise and authority that can make you a more persuasive writer and speaker. 

Improve your memory. One study found that shoppers remembered much more information about the interior of a store on cold, gloomy days when they weren’t feeling so exuberant than they did on sunny, warm days when life felt like a breeze. Research also shows that when we’re in a not-so-good mood, we’re less likely to inadvertently corrupt our memories by incorporating misleading information. 

Encourage perseverance. When you already feel great, why push yourself? On academic tests, an individual in a more somber mood will try to answer more questions—and get more of them right—than he or she will when feeling cheerful. 

Up your generosity. Those in negative moods pay more attention to fairness and are more apt to reject unfair offers. 

Boost your ability to reason. In a study of people with strong political opinions, those who were angry chose to read more articles that opposed their positions instead of practicing confirmation bias, the common tendency to seek out info that supports what we already believe to be true. After exploring these contrary views, they were more willing to change their minds. It seems that anger produces a “nail the opposition” mentality that encourages us to explore what the other guy has to say in order to tear it apart—ironically leaving the door open to being persuaded.

 

From Emotional Agility by Susan David, published on September 6, 2016, by Avery, an imprint of Penguin Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC. Copyright :copyright: 2016 by Susan David. 

Read More

What Being Expected to Check Email After Work Does to Your Health

www.judgeweightloss.com

The place to come for fitness, weight loss, supplement, and just awesome health info.

Thanks for visiting. Enjoy

Employees who feel obligated to check work email during non-work hours are at risk of emotional exhaustion, according to a study being presented next week at the Academy of Management annual meeting.

What’s more, companies don’t have to formally require workers to check in to create this effect; the expectation can simply be implied by workplace culture. (Tell that to your boss next time she says no one’s “forcing you” to log on from vacation!)

Common causes of job stress, such as high workload and interpersonal conflicts, have been well documented in previous research. But the authors of this new study—from Lehigh, Virginia Tech, and Colorado State universities—say theirs is the first to identify email-related expectations as a job stressor.

Other studies have shown, however, that employees must be able to detach from work—both mentally and physically—in order to restore their resources and avoid burnout. And, of course, it’s no secret that continuous connectivity prevents that kind of detachment from happening.

“Email is notoriously known to be the impediment of the recovery process,” the authors write. “Its accessibility contributes to experience of work overload since it allows employees to engage in work as if they never left the workspace.”

To test this hypothesis, they surveyed nearly 400 working adults in several different industries, including finance and banking, technology, and health care. Participants were asked about how much time they spent on email outside of the office, the expectations of their employers, and other factors.

Surprisingly, the actual amount of time people spent on email didn't affect their emotional exhaustion levels or work-family balance as much as their beliefs about what was expected of them did. For many people, these beliefs created a constant state of anxiety and uncertainty—referred to as “anticipatory stress”—regardless of how often they actually checked in.

Employers should take note of the new research. “If an organization perpetuates the ‘always on’ culture it may prevent employees from fully disengaging from work eventually leading to chronic stress,” Liuba Belkin, associate professor of management at Lehigh’s College of Business and Economics and coauthor of the study, said in a press release.

Plenty of previous research shows that displeasure with work-life balance can also lead to anxiety, depression, absenteeism, and decreased job productivity. “Even though in the short run being ‘always on’ may seem like a good idea because it increases productivity, it can be dangerous in the long-run,” Belkin said.

If banning email after work isn’t a practical option for companies, Belkin suggests that managers implement weekly “email-free days” or institute a rotating schedule for employees to be on-call (or on-email) after hours.

But that’s not all. To really benefit employees, the authors suggest, companies have to truly follow through with these policies—not just say that they exist. In other words, we need to feel secure that our bosses truly value work-family balance, and that it’s okay to unplug for the evening or the weekend.

 

This article originally appeared on RealSimple.com.

Read More