Health & Wellbeing


The Open Think Tank

02

Dec 2016

The Open Think Tank

We recently hosted our first Open Think Tank session, an initiative that brings behavioural science experts and social change leaders together to discuss practical psychologically-focused solutions to some of the challenges the social change leader is currently facing. For our first session, we invited Ruben Hazelzet, an behavioural science practitioner, with a particular interest in the application of social proof techniques. We also asked David Oliphant, an inspiring young social change maker, who is currently focusing on a program called Streetwise that helps homeless folk learn to manage their impulses, curb their drug usage, build basic financial skills and find...

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Facts Don’t Change Our Fictions

28

Oct 2016

Facts Don’t Change Our Fictions

With so much scientific evidence so readily available, it really is troubling that people still doubt the effects of climate change; still hold on so dearly to astrological signs; and still believe that vaccines cause autism. Why have our governments, social organizations and scientific leaders had so much difficultly changing people’s beliefs when the facts are so readily available? Recent research in cognitive and social psychology has the answers. It paints a clear, albeit deeply concerning, picture about the nature of belief. It demonstrates how perfectly reasonable people can come to believe completely different things even when exposed to the...

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Head to Head: The Girl Without A Sound

18

Apr 2016

Head to Head: The Girl Without A Sound

‘Representation matters, so little black girls need stories written about them, for them. If we don’t use our words and use them loudly, we remain invisible.’ This is the essence of The Girl Without A Sound, ‘a message of hope for all women of colour to keep searching for our voices, to fight to be heard and to use them loudly to implement change. It is a call to action.’ So insists storyteller, actress, activist and playwright, Buhle Ngaba (25), visionary and author behind the whirlwind journey that culminated in The Girl Without A Sound. It’s the playful, brave, passionate and powerful tale of a young, black...

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No Butts: breaking the habit

18

Apr 2016

No Butts: breaking the habit

As you may have gathered from the last post, quitting smoking can be tough. But, it doesn’t have to be. And it’s got a lot less to do with the cigarettes themselves than we think. Nicotine is addictive, but smoking is 10% nicotine and 90% habit. After just 3 days all nicotine is out of your body. In other words, if you make it 3 days you can be smoke-free for a lifetime; the rest is just you against your habit. “If you want to achieve your goals, don’t focus on them”. That’s Reggie Rivers’ advice at least. It seems illogical, it’s the...

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An Empathetic Approach to Prejudice

22

Mar 2016

An Empathetic Approach to Prejudice

In the first post of this series, I unpacked implicit prejudice and how it affects all of us on a day-to-day basis. The key idea in that discussion was that, as much as we would like to believe that we can make deliberate, controlled judgments and decisions when interacting with someone, the inevitable outcome is largely the product of many underlying, intersecting associations, generalizations and preconceptions that we just aren’t consciously aware of. So, what can we do about it? To this end, it might seem reasonable to look for ways to shift judgements towards a more conscious and controlled...

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No Butts: smoking on the brain

25

Feb 2016

No Butts: smoking on the brain

It’s dirty, it stinks, it hurts your throat, it tastes bad, it kills your taste buds, your sense of smell, it’s harmful to others, it rots and stains your teeth, it gives you bad breath, it affects your breathing, it gives you wrinkles, it shortens your life, it makes you age faster, it clogs up your lungs, it wastes your money, it wastes your time, it stains your fingers, it strains your heart, it dictates your schedule… Sound like something you should be doing so often? But you knew all that already, didn’t you. Anyone want a smoke? The neuroscience...

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