Oh, dang: Invisibilia episode 5

bird_diagram_final_wide-f57ad53cb648cd6a830907907811e189be432798-s1400-c85Wow. From kittens & puppies to categories to gender to culture to death. Invisibilia is once again quite a journey, interweaving personal perspectives with scientific research through compelling storytelling. This show still totally tops my charts and lists.

But my heart breaks just a little bit when I hear Lulu or Alix upspeak unnecessarily (Alix never seemed to do that in her news reporting!). Fortunately, there isn’t much of that in this episode.

Dang, I love you, NPR. TED Radio Hour, Invisibilia, Fresh Air, All Things Considered, Morning Edition, Radio Lab… you’re just nailing it.

Open Notebook: Maximum Brainpower

IMG_4548There’s a lot of good information and perspective in the excellent brain health book Maximum Brainpower, much of it resonating with Simon Sinek‘s Leaders Eat Last and Steven Kotler’s The Rise of Superman. In case it’s of interest, I thought I’d share some of the ideas from Maximum Brainpower that I’ve jotted down to keep in mind. My note-taking style for books I read for leisure is pretty minimalistic, but I’ve included page numbers (in the 2013 US paperback edition) for the quotes and points below if you’d like to read more about them.

Eustress: stress that stimulates performance, p. 129

“In evaluating the impact of stress, what matters is not the absolute level of stress but the change in stress from a person’s baseline (the level to which he or she is accustomed).” p. 130
“Whether a new situation creates stress or eustress depends largely on our level of preparation. Eustress occurs when we believe we have a good chance at succeeding in the task before us.” p. 130

“…’cognitive appraisal’ posits that if we think we can manage, we are less stressed.” p. 131
2 phases of cognitive appraisal: 1. whether the event is a threat or challenge, 2. can we cope or not?

“…Stanford researchers were shocked to discover that multitaskers were uniformly bad at just about every mental task. They were far more distracted by irrelevant items, had worse memories, and were slower at switching tasks (!) than non-multitaskers. By training themselves to constantly move from one stimulus to the next, they had Continue reading