Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Four guidelines for smart use of smartphones

These days, you can’t go any­where with­out hear­ing about how tech­nol­o­gy is ruin­ing every­thing, includ­ing our hap­pi­ness. There is some truth to this, but it’s not the whole sto­ry.

Tech­nol­o­gy can be bad for us—for exam­ple, when social media gives us FOMO (fear of miss­ing out) or traps us in fil­ter bub­bles that pre­vent us from see­ing mul­ti­ple points of view on impor­tant issues. As a soci­ety, we are increas­ing­ly con­cerned that tech­nolo­gies like smart­phones and social media result in more social com­par­i­son, bul­ly­ing, and loneliness—all stum­bling blocks to hap­pi­ness. Tech­nol­o­gy seems to be bad for our hap­pi­ness when it inter­feres with the men­tal, social, emo­tion­al, and behav­ioral process­es that con­tribute to well-being.

But we often fail to real­ize (and dis­cuss) the ways that tech­nol­o­gy can also sup­port hap­pi­ness and well-being—for exam­ple Read the rest of this entry »

It’s World Mental Health Day today: Let’s review how a healthy diet can promote mental well-being

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Should you eat an apple—or a bag of Ore­os? Go to McDonald’s—or the veg­e­tar­i­an restau­rant on the cor­ner?

When we make these every­day food choic­es, many of us think first of our phys­i­cal health and appear­ance. But there’s anoth­er fac­tor we may want to con­sid­er in pick­ing foods: their impact on our men­tal health. Read the rest of this entry »

IBM, VA and Total Brain to test digital mental health platform for veterans and reservists

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IBM unveils GRIT, a dig­i­tal solu­tion devel­oped in part­ner­ship with the Depart­ment of Vet­er­ans Affairs, to help vet­er­ans in tran­si­tion (press release):

IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced today the launch of GRIT, a dig­i­tal solu­tion for vet­er­ans, active-duty ser­vice mem­bers, and reservists that pro­vides a mobile expe­ri­ence to help them under­stand and strength­en their men­tal fit­ness, social con­nec­tions, and over­all well-being. Read the rest of this entry »

Positive solitude, Feeling active and Future-mindednes: Three Keys to Well-being

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Last month, researchers from over 60 coun­tries gath­ered at the Inter­na­tion­al Pos­i­tive Psy­chol­o­gy Association’s 6th World Con­gress in Mel­bourne, Aus­tralia, to share cut­ting-edge insights on the sci­ence of well-being.

Sev­er­al insights pre­sent­ed stood out to me as new or sur­pris­ing. Read the rest of this entry »

Let’s discuss how to Outsmart Smart Technology to Reclaim our Health and Focus

I’m excit­ed to share that the upcom­ing 2019 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit will fea­ture, on May 8th, a fas­ci­nat­ing pre­sen­ta­tion and dis­cus­sion with Dr. Mar­garet Mor­ris, who spent 13 years as a researcher at Intel and recent­ly wrote a very time­ly book — Left to Our Own Devices: Out­smart­ing Smart Tech­nol­o­gy to Reclaim Our Rela­tion­ships, Health, and Focus (MIT Press, 2018).

Please learn more about the fan­tas­tic Sum­mit Agen­da and con­sid­er join­ing us!

To bet­ter under­stand Dr. Mor­ris’ work and insights you can read this great book review over at Psy­chi­atric Times:

Mor­ris is a skill­ful sto­ry­teller and takes that chal­lenge to task. Across eight easy-to-read chap­ters, she illus­trates how peo­ple, most like­ly younger users, “hack” tech­nolo­gies to fos­ter con­nec­tion, mind­ful­ness, and well-being. The chap­ters are cen­tered around a col­lec­tion of per­son­al nar­ra­tives from peo­ple who per­son­al­ized their dig­i­tal devices and expe­ri­ence pos­i­tive results. Mor­ris records these sto­ries with a gen­tle, engag­ing, and upbeat tone that requires no for­mal back­ground in either men­tal health or tech­nol­o­gy … This book is a good read for today’s dig­i­tal health ini­tia­tives and for clin­i­cians hop­ing to keep up to date in cur­rent trends in men­tal health tech­nol­o­gy. It reminds us that putting a device in a patient’s hands will often lead to out­comes that we could nev­er have imag­ined. It also pokes holes in the once reign­ing view that robot­ics and chat­bots are dehu­man­iz­ing and anti­so­cial. If any­thing, the nar­ra­tives sug­gest that tech­nol­o­gy can help patients mon­i­tor their emo­tion­al states and improve shar­ing and con­nec­tions. The book under­scores how use­ful it is to study how patients use apps in real-world set­tings and to learn from their lived expe­ri­ences.

 

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About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters,  SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking how brain science can improve our health and our lives.

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