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Improving Emotional Intelligence in Psychosis with Art Therapy

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Emotional intelligence is defined as “the ability to monitor one’s own and others’ feelings and emotions, to discriminate among them and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and actions.” Self-regulation of emotional intelligence is is vital to healthy emotional interactions.

Emotional intelligence is formed of interpersonal intelligence and intrapersonal intelligence. Interpersonal intelligence reflects competence in the context of social relationships, while intrapersonal intelligence reflects the ability to regulate one’s own emotions.

The degree of an individual’s emotional intelligence affects the degree to which that individual can deal psychopathological conditions such as schizophrenia. Although schizophrenics may be emotionally sensitive, the interpersonal and intrapersonal spheres of emotional intelligence of these individuals are likely to be negatively impacted for several reasons.

Due to the fact that schizophrenia emerges in late adolescence and early adulthood, it is likely that the Eriksonian stages of social development that correspond with this emergent pathology are negatively impacted by schizophrenia, especially the tasks of achieving independence and forming close relationships.

Much of what comprises emotional intelligence relies on self-permeable boundaries related to appropriate detachment and attachment with others. In terms of successful negotiation of the Eriksonian stages, “identity versus role confusion” may allow the individual to determine appropriate detachment from others by means of differentiating the self, and “intimacy versus isolation” may allow the individual to achieve appropriate attachment within the context of a relationship with another person.

Psychotic individuals have obstacles achieving this due to factors implicit to psychosis. These individuals are both socially alienated and overly involved in their mental realms, stemming partly from stigmatization that may not allow them to find what they perceive as accurate reflections of their internal states in the external world and their understanding of other people. Empathic reflection, in the tradition of Roger’s Person-Centered Therapy, is seldom understood to be available to schizophrenics, perhaps simply due to the fact that most clinicians cannot relate to the psychotic experience of a schizophrenic.

In addition, auditory hallucinations — the internal or intrapersonal experience of a schizophrenic — may be represented by an amalgamation of perceptions of “self” and “other”. This experience does not necessarily allow the schizophrenic the ability to self-regulate her emotions, primarily because she does not entirely own her mental experience. Due to the representation of hallucinations in the minds of psychotic individuals as “entities”, there is also a lack of apparent privacy in the mental realm of the psychotic individual, and the type of experience implied by this perceived lack of privacy can be punitive.

If people with psychosis cannot distinguish boundaries in their own mind, how can they be expected to demonstrate effective intrapersonal intelligence? If stigma causes impenetrable interpersonal boundaries between the psychotic mind and the minds of those who are not psychotic, how can psychotic individuals demonstrate effective interpersonal intelligence?

So this brings us to an essential question: How can the schizophrenic individual negotiate both the intrapersonal and the interpersonal realms in a healthy way? The schizophrenic requires some means of healthy self-expression that allows for symbolic representation of the self that can be at least partly understood by others.

It is suggested that artistic self-expression is a means of creating a personal stance in the social arena that will allow for healthy regulation of emotion. Art therapy could be an important avenue toward increased mental health in the psychotic individual. Engaging in art not only allows the psychotic individual to express his own emotions to others, but the canvas (whether a poem, song or literal canvas) can reflect back to him his internal state. This dialogue between the artist and his work serves an important therapeutic function.

http://brainblogger.com

August 10, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

‘Pacific Rim’ Movie Review

Review of Pacific Rim starring Charlie Hunnam

 

Pacific Rim isn’t Transformers versus monstrous creatures. It also isn’t incredibly challenging plot-wise. What Pacific Rim is is one great big in-your-face action extravaganza that’s more fun than you’d ever guess from simply watching the trailers and clips. Guillermo del Toro channels his inner teenage boy to deliver a film that harkens back to the old Godzilla/Mothra/Gamera movies while at the same time feeling fresh and new. Del Toro’s a nerd who knows his audience well and yet isn’t afraid to challenge them a bit with something like Pacific Rim that, on the surface, seems to be more along the line of what you’d expect from Michael Bay.

Del Toro pays tribute to the monster movies of the ’50s and ’60s, bringing to life on the screen new Kaijus sent to Earth to clear out the human population starting with cities that line the Pacific Rim. The beasts emerge from a portal that allows them to leave their hideout under the Pacific Ocean to terrorize and destroy coastal cities. The military isn’t effective enough against the Kaijus and the fate of the world is eventually put in the metallic hands of gigantic robots (Jaegers) commanded by two human pilots whose minds are connected via a technology referred to as ‘drifting’. Channeling their skills, the two-person human teams engage in combat with the Kaijus using brutal robot strength as well as powerful weapons.

However, when it appears we may have gotten the upper-hand and could win the war, it’s discovered the Kaijus are evolving and learning from their past mistakes. They’re also speeding up their ascent to the surface and even working in pairs. The Jaeger program is all but abandoned as the world turns to building towering walls (apparently they didn’t watch World War Z) to keep the Kaijus out. Yeah, right, you know that’s not going to turn out well, don’t you? It’s a good thing there’s a rebel Jaeger program still secretly underway or else we’d all be reduced to nothing but Kaiju food.

The Bottom Line

Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim looks gorgeous in IMAX and 3D, and if that’s a screening option in your neighborhood definitely pay for the upgrade and catch it in those formats. Del Toro’s wild imagination comes to life vividly on the screen via some of the most visually impressive CG work in recent memory. And the budget was well spent, with every cent appearing onscreen.

What Pacific Rim also has is an engaging cast filling out the key roles. Led by Sons of Anarchy‘sCharlie Hunnam as a disgraced Jaeger pilot who’s called upon to save the day, Pacific Rim‘s ensemble is up to the task of not being completely overshadowed by the digital effects. Idris Elba gets his Bill Pullman in Independence Day moment and Ron Perlman chews up and spits out scenery. Charlie Day and Burn Gorman provide the comic relief as two diametrically opposed scientists who have gone so far as to paint an actual line on the floor of their lab that neither allows the other to cross.

Pacific Rim, above all else, is just plain fun. It’s the sort of popcorn-chomping, cheer for the good guys movie Hollywood normally takes a swing at and misses. The character development’s on the skimpy side (other than the sprawling backstory revealed for Mako Mori, played by Rinko Kikuchi) and we don’t necessarily need the love story, but when it comes to the action set pieces, Pacific Rim more than delivers the goods. Yes, there’s a clear line between the heroes and villains, but who cares about silly things like logic and sharp dialogue when you’ve got Charlie Day mind-melding with Kaiju and Jaegers using ships as clubs to swat down the nasty beasts.

GRADE: B+

Pacific Rim was directed by Guillermo del Toro and is rated PG-13 for sequences of intense sci-fi action and violence throughout, and brief language.

Theatrical Release: July 11, 2013

July 27, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Chinese People May Be at Higher Risk for Stroke than Caucasians

 

MINNEAPOLIS – A new study suggests that Chinese people may be at higher risk for stroke than Caucasians. The research is published in the July 16, 2013, print issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. “While stroke is the second most-common cause of death worldwide, in China it is the leading cause of death and adult disability,” said study author Chung-Fen Tsai, MD, with the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. “The global impact of stroke in the decades ahead is predicted to be greatest in middle income countries, including China. It is important to gain a better understanding of how stroke affects different populations as we try to reduce the burden of the disease worldwide.” For the analysis, researchers reviewed studies from 1990 onward that included first strokes in Chinese people in China and Taiwan. A total of 404,254 Chinese were included. The study included more than two million person-years and 3,935 strokes. The researchers also identified 10 community-based studies among Caucasians including 1,885,067 people, more than 3.2 million person-years and 4,568 strokes. Comparing the two groups, the research found a slightly higher overall risk of stroke in Chinese people than in Caucasians, with a range of 205 to 584 strokes per 100,000 Chinese people age 45 to 74, compared to 170 to 335 strokes per 100,000 Caucasian people the same age. Chinese also had a higher risk of intracerebral hemorrhage, a type of stroke due to bleeding into the brain from a ruptured blood vessel, compared to Caucasian people, or 33 percent of all strokes compared to 12 percent of all strokes in community-based studies. Chinese people had a lower average age of stroke onset of 66 to 70 years-old, compared to 72 to 76 years-old for Caucasians. The study was supported by the Ministry of Education in Taiwan and the Scottish Funding Council. To learn more about stroke, please visit www.aan.com/patients.

The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 26,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to promoting the highest quality patient-centered neurologic care. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, migraine, multiple sclerosis, concussion, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.

For more information about the American Academy of Neurology, visit http://www.aan.com or find us on FacebookTwitterGoogle+ and YouTube.

http://www.aan.com/PressRoom/Home/PressRelease/1197

July 27, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Top 5 Facts You Didn’t Know About Living In Outer Space

5. During one day you will experience 16 sunrises

The sun rises and sets every 90 minutes in low Earth orbit, making it really hard to sleep well due to the absence of normal day/night cycles. To counteract this, ISS administrators set astronauts’ schedules on a 24-hour, Earth-based timetable to keep their activity as grounded as possible. The clocks onboard the ISS are set to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), about halfway between Houston, Tex., and Moscow. To keep astronauts on that schedule, Mission Control sends wake-up calls to shuttle missions. They typically play music, which is either requested by an astronaut or an astronaut’s family member. Astronauts on the ISS, on the other hand, wake up with the help of an alarm.
4. You will grow taller
Without the compressive force of gravity, your spinal column expands and you grow taller, usually by between 5 and 8 cm. Unfortunately, the extra height can bring complications, which may include backache and nerve problems.
3. You may stop snoring
A 2001 study showed that astronauts who snored on Earth snoozed silently in space. That’s because gravity plays a dominant role in the generation of apneas, hypopneas, and snoring. It’s possible for astronauts to snore in space, and NASA has even recorded crewmembers doing so, but the effects of zero gravity appear to reduce snoring.
2. Some food and condiments require adding water to be eaten in space

In space, salt and pepper are available but only in a liquid form. This is because astronauts can’t sprinkle salt and pepper on their food in space. The salt and pepper would simply float away. There is a danger they could clog air vents, contaminate equipment or get stuck in an astronaut’s eyes, mouth or nose.
1. The longest time a person stayed in space is 438 days

http://pirotinsurance.blogspot.it

November 6, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Small Strokes, TIA Can Be Disabling

By Nancy Walsh, Staff Writer, MedPage Today

Published: September 14, 2012

Reviewed by Robert Jasmer, MD; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco and Dorothy Caputo, MA, BSN, RN, Nurse Planner

A substantial 15% of patients who’ve had a transient ischemic attack (TIA) or minor stroke are disabled 3 months later, particularly if they had persistent symptoms and a high-risk phenotype seen on imaging, a Canadian prospective study found.

The risk of disability was more than doubled in patients whose symptoms were ongoing during emergency department evaluation (OR 2.4, 95% CI 1.3 to 4.4, P=0.004), according to Shelagh B. Coutts, MD, and colleagues from the University of Calgary in Alberta.

Similar high risks also were seen if CT or CT angiography revealed acute ischemic changes or more than 50% stenosis near the ischemic area (OR 2.4, 95% CI 1.4 to 4.0,P=0.001), the researchers reported online inStroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Risk assessment after minor stroke or TIA has traditionally focused on recurrence, not disability, yet studies have suggested that neurologic problems can worsen and standard evaluations may not identify certain deficits that can be disabling.

Treatment for these patients also has been inadequate.

“A common reason for patients to be excluded from thrombolysis is that [the events] are considered ‘too mild’,” the researchers noted.

To explore the potential predictors of poor outcome after TIA or a minor stroke (<4 on the NIH Stroke Scale score), Coutts and colleagues analyzed data from a series of 499 patients referred to the Foothills Medical Center in Calgary who were previously not disabled.

More than half were men, and median age was 69.

A total of 61% had ongoing symptoms when seen in the emergency department, and the median time until CT was performed following symptom onset was about 5 hours.

MRI also was successfully done in 82% of patients.

Disability was defined as having a score of 2 or higher on the modified Rankin scale. Most of the 74 patients who had a disabled outcome had a modified Rankin score of 2 (42).

Baseline characteristics associated with disability at 3 months included age older than 60, diabetes, higher baseline NIH Stroke Scale score (median baseline score was 1), high-risk CT findings, and positive findings on MR diffusion-weighted imaging.

Aside from ongoing symptoms and high-risk CT findings, multivariate analysis found significant predictive ability for the following:

  • Diabetes, OR 2.3 (95% CI 1.2 to 4.3, P=0.009)
  • Female sex, OR 1.8 (95% CI 1.1 to 3, P=0.025)
  • Baseline NIH Stroke Scale score-per point, OR 1.49 (95% CI 1.2 to 1.9, P<0.001)

 

The researchers also conducted an exploratory analysis in which they excluded patients who had recurrent cerebrovascular events and found similar results for high-risk CT findings (OR 2.02, 95% CI 1.1 to 3.6, P=0.017) and persistent symptoms in the emergency department (OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.2 to 4.3, P=0.017).

Among the 74 patients who were disabled at 3 months, only 26% had had a recurrent event. But among those with a second event, 53% were disabled (RR 4.4, 95% CI 3.0 to 6.6, P<0.0001).

Therefore, while most patients who became disabled had only the primary event, those who did have second events were at very high risk for adverse outcomes. “Recurrent events are therefore a very important surrogate for disability but numerically not the major factor in predicting a disabled outcome,” Coutts and colleagues observed.

These findings about the outcomes following minor strokes or TIAs were “surprising,” they noted.

“Our study is novel in that it emphasizes the need to examine disability even in minor strokes and brings together careful clinical assessments and imaging data to emphasize this point,” they stated.

Future research should explore the possible reasons for why certain individuals become disabled even after an apparently small stroke or TIA, and should examine more refined ways of measuring minor disabilities than were used in this study.

The researchers concluded that patients with TIAs or minor strokes that have high-risk features should be considered for thrombolytic therapy and other treatments.

“Furthermore, it is clear that the issue of disability after minor stroke requires much more careful consideration as the relevant outcome rather than simply recurrent stroke,” they wrote.

source:medpagetoday

September 22, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Diagnosing PAF in Patients With Cryptogenic Stroke

 

 

 

By Mark Abrahams, MD
Reviewed by Philip Green, MD, Assistant in Clinical Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, New York

Published: 08/22/2012

 

 

 

 

In approximately 25% of cases of ischemic stroke, the cause remains unknown despite comprehensive evaluation, resulting in a default diagnosis of cryptogenic stroke.1 Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a known risk factor for ischemic stroke, and part of the workup for any patient presenting with ischemic stroke is a history and ECG to assess for AF. However, because AF is frequently asymptomatic and/or paroxysmal, it may remain undetected. In such cases, guidelines recommend antithrombotic therapy with antiplatelet agents such as aspirin. In contrast, in cases where AF is definitively diagnosed, oral anticoagulation is recommended and is known to have superior stroke prevention properties compared to antiplatelet agents.1,2

In patients presenting with ischemic stroke, any diagnostic approach that would increase the ability to accurately diagnose paroxysmal AF (PAF) and intervene with an appropriate stroke prevention strategy would be of clear value. This article examines the insidious nature of PAF, how the diagnosis is often missed in patients with cryptogenic stroke, and evidence suggesting that prolonged ECG monitoring may significantly increase diagnostic yield.

PAF is known to carry a stroke risk equivalent to that of persistent AF forms—implying that accurate diagnosis (and subsequent stroke prevention therapy) has clear benefit.2 While a one-time or repeated 12-lead ECG has long been a standard diagnostic tool, its limitations in the diagnosis of PAF are substantial. A survey of multiple study results demonstrates the ability of prolonged continuous ECG monitoring to increase diagnostic sensitivity.

In one such study in patients with an index cryptogenic stroke, 7-day Holter monitoring resulted in a significantly higher AF detection rate of 12.5% versus 4.8% for 24-hour monitoring and 6.4% for 48-hour monitoring.3

Two studies have demonstrated the ability of event recorders to significantly increase diagnostic yield above and beyond that of a 12-lead ECG and 24-hour Holter monitoring. In these two studies, event recording of 4 to 7 days’ duration revealed AF in 14.3% and 5.7% of patients with normal ECGs and 24-hour Holter monitoring.4

Similarly, Mobile Cardiac Outpatient Telemetry (MCOT) of 21 days’ duration has been shown to accurately diagnose AF in an additional 23% of patients who would have otherwise not been so diagnosed.4

Given the above evidence, the use of prolonged ECG monitoring in patients with cryptogenic stroke in order to rule out AF may be justified.

While the optimum monitoring duration and method of AF detection after cryptogenic stroke are unknown, one ongoing multicenter study in 450 patients is investigating this issue. In the CRYSTAL AF (CRYptogenic STroke And underLying AF) study, patients with cryptogenic stroke are being randomized to either standard arrhythmia monitoring (as determined by local hospital protocol) or 6 months of continuous monitoring using an implantable cardiac monitor. The results of this study promise to be informative.1

Although, over time, the use of ambulatory ECG monitoring to diagnose AF has increased, there are presently no clear recommendations to guide clinicians. The last official comment on this topic from the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association was in 1999—but this document seems outmoded because of advances in the relevant technology since then.3 In 2007, the Heart Rhythm Society stated that (for patients undergoing catheter or surgical ablation of AF), “The more intensively a patient is monitored and the longer the period of monitoring, the greater the likelihood of detecting both symptomatic and asymptomatic AF.”5

Moving forward, advances in implantable cardiac devices may improve our ability to diagnose and monitor AF. Given the proven ability of appropriate oral anticoagulation to prevent stroke in these patients, this would be truly positive progress.

 

 

References:

  1. Sinha AM, et al. Cryptogenic Stroke and underlying Atrial Fibrillation (CRYSTAL AF): design and rationale. Am Heart J. 2010;160:36-41.
  2. Camm AJ, et al. Usefulness of continuous electrocardiographic monitoring for atrial fibrillation. Am J Cardiol. 2012;110:270-276.
  3. Stahrenberg R, et al. Enhanced detection of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation by early and prolonged continuous holter monitoring in patients with cerebral ischemia presenting in sinus rhythm. Stroke. 2010;41:2884-2888.
  4. Ustrell X, et al. Cardiac workup of ischemic stroke. Curr Cardiol Rev. 2010;6:175-18
  5. Mittal S, et al. Ambulatory external electrocardiographic monitoring: focus on atrial fibrillation. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2011;58:1741-1749.
  6. source:medpagetoday

September 22, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Sex and coffee may raise risk of brain hemorrhage in some people

Coffee studies should warm your heart

Sex and risk among people in their 20s

The rupture of a brain aneurysm is a relatively rare event but, as it causes bleeding in the brain, that event is a potentially devastating one. Now researchers have attempted to identify possible triggers for such ruptures, also known as hemorrhagic strokes, finding that sex, coffee and losing one’s temper — among other things — may raise the risk.

Such ruptures begin with aneurysms, which are weak spots in blood vessels in the brain. Understress, those weak spots can rupture and lead to hemorrhaging, or bleeding. But it wasn’t clear what activities put people at the most risk of a resulting hemorrhagic stroke.

In surveying 250 people who’d recently had a subarachnoid hemorrhage resulting from an aneurysm, researchers in the Netherlands asked how often in the past year, and just before the hemorrhage, they were exposed to 30 potential triggers, such as smoking, drinking alcohol and having sex.

By assessing the frequency and intensity of their exposure to such triggers, researchers found that eight activities appeared to make a rupture more likely:

-Drinking coffee

-Drinking soda

-Blowing your nose

-Straining on the toilet

-Being startled

-Getting angry

-Having sex

-Exercising

The common factor? All produced sudden, short increases inblood pressure.

That doesn’t mean people with aneurysms should try to cut out all those activities—though it couldn’t hurt to get rid of, for example, anger issues. The researchers wrote:

“Reducing caffeine consumption or treating constipated patients with unruptured [intracranial aneurysms] with laxatives may lower the risk of [subarachnoid hemorrhage]. Although physical exercise has a triggering potential, we do not advise refraining from physical exercise because it is also an important factor in lowering the risk of othercardiovascular diseases.”

The results were published online Thursday in Stroke.

About 2% of people have aneurysms, the authors point out, but most never rupture. In the U.S., there are 25,000 to 27,000 ruptures per year; about 40% are fatal, according to the Brain 

http://www.latimes.com

September 17, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

History Mystery

 

 
 
 

cid:1.977110530@web65809.mail.ac4.yahoo.com
 
Have a history teacher explain this —– if they can.
      
cid:2.977110531@web65809.mail.ac4.yahoo.comcid:3.977110531@web65809.mail.ac4.yahoo.com

Abraham Lincoln was elected to Congress in 1846. 
 John F. Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1946.

 
 Abraham Lincoln was elected President in 1860. 
 John F. Kennedy was elected President in 1960
 
 Both were particularly concerned with civil rights. 
 Both wives lost their children while living in the White House.
 
 Both Presidents were shot on a Friday. 
 Both Presidents were shot in the head 
 
 Now it gets really weird.
Lincoln ‘s secretary was named Kennedy. 
 Kennedy’s Secretary was named  Lincoln .
 
 Both were assassinated by Southerners. 
 Both were succeeded by Southerners named Johnson. 
 Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Lincoln, was born in 1808. 
 Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded Kennedy, was born in 1908.
 
cid:4.977110531@web65809.mail.ac4.yahoo.comcid:5.977110531@web65809.mail.ac4.yahoo.com
 
 John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated Lincoln, was born in 1839.
Lee Harvey Oswald, who assassinated Kennedy, was born in
1939.
cid:6.977110531@web65809.mail.ac4.yahoo.com

 Both assassins were known by their three names. 
 Both names are composed of fifteen letters.

 Now hang on to your seat. 
Lincoln was shot at the theater named ‘Ford’. 
 Kennedy was shot in a car called
‘ Lincoln ‘ made by ‘Ford’. 
Lincoln was shot in a theater and his assassin ran and hid in a warehouse.
 Kennedy was shot from a warehouse and his assassin ran and hid in a theater.
 Booth and Oswald were assassinated   
cid:21.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.comcid:22.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.comcid:23.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.comcid:24.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.comcid:25.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.comcid:26.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.comcid:27.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.comcid:28.3253684622@web39302.mail.mud.yahoo.com
 

 

August 19, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Power of Music, Tapped in a Cubicle

By AMISHA PADNANI
Published: August 11, 2012
THE guy in the next cubicle is yammering away on the phone. Across the room, someone begins cursing loudly at a jammed copy machine.

headphones on the other end of your desk suddenly look very appealing. Would anyone mind if you tapped into your iTunes playlist for a while?

Some workers like to listen to music when they find themselves losing focus. They may also plug in their earbuds to escape an environment that’s too noisy — or too quiet — or to make a repetitive job feel more lively.

In biological terms, melodious sounds help encourage the release of dopamine in the reward area of the brain, as would eating a delicacy, looking at something appealing or smelling a pleasant aroma, said Dr. Amit Sood, a physician of integrative medicine with the Mayo Clinic.

People’s minds tend to wander, “and we know that a wandering mind is unhappy,” Dr. Sood said. “Most of that time, we are focusing on the imperfections of life.” Music can bring us back to the present moment.

“It breaks you out of just thinking one way,” said Teresa Lesiuk, an assistant professor in the music therapy program at the University of Miami.

Dr. Lesiuk’s research focuses on how music affects workplace performance. In one study involving information technology specialists, she found that those who listened to music completed their tasks more quickly and came up with better ideas than those who didn’t, because the music improved their mood.

“When you’re stressed, you might make a decision more hastily; you have a very narrow focus of attention,” she said. “When you’re in a positive mood, you’re able to take in more options.”

Dr. Lesiuk found that personal choice in music was very important. She allowed participants in her study to select whatever music they liked and to listen as long as they wanted. Those who were moderately skilled at their jobs benefited the most, while experts saw little or no effect. And some novices regarded the music as distracting.

Dr. Lesiuk has also found that the older people are, the less time they spend listening to music at work.

Few companies have policies about music listening, said Paul Flaharty, a regional vice president at Robert Half Technology, the staffing agency. But it is still a good idea to check with your manager, even if you see others wearing headphones in the office.

He said some supervisors might think that workers wearing headphones weren’t fully engaged and were blocking out important interactions “because they are going into their own world.”

“If someone’s not doing a good job,” he said, “then you can have a hiring manager say that all they do is listen to music all day and that it’s hampering productivity.”

For those who choose to listen to music, it’s best to set limits, because wearing headphones for an entire shift can be perceived as rude by those nearby.

Dr. Sood, at the Mayo Clinic, said it takes just 15 minutes to a half-hour of listening time to regain concentration. Music without lyrics usually works best, he said.

Daniel Rubin, a columnist at The Philadelphia Inquirer, said he has listened to jazz and piano concertos for most of his 33-year newspaper career — but only when writing on deadline. He started off using a Sony Walkman, but now makes use of 76 days’ worth of music on his iTunes playlist.

“The person clicking their nails three desks away and the person humming next to me all sound equally loud and it’s hard for me to block them out,” he said.

As a columnist, he works mostly alone, and people in the office seldom need to approach him. But when he was a budding reporter, he noticed that colleagues would become irritated when trying to get his attention. “It was really annoying because suddenly you would hear ‘Dan … DAN … DAN RUBIN! People were screaming at you because they needed you.”

ANDREW ENDERS, 28, a lawyer and insurance broker in Linglestown, Pa., said he and an officemate bonded over a local radio station when they worked at the Dauphin County District Attorney’s office. They switched off the radio only when speaking with a client, and they lowered the volume when their boss was around.

“I do these very serious things, reviewing insurance policies and evaluating risk and liability exposure,” Mr. Enders said. “A big part of my personality is the artistic side, and music helps me balance who I am as an individual with what I’m doing at work.”
http://www.nytimes.com/

August 13, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Coffee: The Original Wonder Drug?

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Next

http://www.medscape.com

August 13, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment