What's Your Brain Like on the Greater Good?
   

In Brief

Most Recent Story

Is a Good Role Model a Positive One?

By Art Markman | May 20, 2015

A new study finds that positive role models aren't necessarily better than negative ones. It all depends on what you are trying to achieve.

 
  

Past Stories

Helping Kids Overcome the Bystander Effect

By Kira M. Newman | May 18, 2015

A new study of five year olds reveals what forces stop us from helping people in need—and what we can do to overcome them.

 

How Our Bodies React to Seeing Goodness

By Jill Suttie | May 12, 2015

A new study maps what happens in our bodies and brains when we witness acts of kindness and compassion.

 

Is Facebook Building Political Bridges?

By Tom Jacobs | May 8, 2015

Two new studies defy conventional wisdom by finding that social media is exposing people to different ideas, not isolating them.

 

Why People Make Sacrifices for Others

By Josh Elmore | April 29, 2015

A new study asks: Is costly altruism motivated more by self-centered distress or a compassionate desire to relieve another person’s pain?

 

What Makes Us Thankful?

By Art Markman | April 20, 2015

A recent study suggests that a belief in the free will of other people is key to our ability to feel gratitude when they do something to help us out.

 

How to Help a Narcissist to Forgive

By Linda Graham | April 14, 2015

Narcissists struggle to forgive people for even minor transgressions. But a new study points the way forward.

 

Why Some People Own Mistakes and Others Don’t

By Art Markman | April 13, 2015

What helps us to take responsibility for our mistakes? A recent study says the key might lie with your belief that people can change.

 

Why You Should Love Thy Coworker

By Kira M. Newman | April 6, 2015

A new study suggests that fostering compassion among health care workers might improve the quality of patient care.

 

Can a Pill Make You More Compassionate?

By Tom Levy | March 25, 2015

A new study suggests that altering the chemical balance in our brains can make us more committed to fairness.

 

You Need More Than a Book to Learn Loving-Kindness

By Kira M. Newman | March 23, 2015

A new study suggests that experience trumps intellectual knowledge when it comes to fostering compassion.

 
Can you spot true happiness in a person's smile? Take our emotional intelligence quiz!

Are Conservatives Really Happier than Liberals?

By Tom Jacobs | March 16, 2015

Research has found that right-wingers report being happier than those on the left. But a new study calls that into question by measuring words and behavior.

 

Measuring Compassion in the Body

By Emiliana R. Simon-Thomas | March 9, 2015

What happens in Vagus… may make or break compassion.

 

Can Awe Boost Health?

By Yasmin Anwar | February 12, 2015

A new study suggests we can add nature, art, and religion to life’s best anti-inflammatories.

 

Happier Tweets, Healthier Communities

By Tom Jacobs | February 2, 2015

New research finds that the number of heart disease deaths in a county can be predicted by analyzing the language its residents use on Twitter.

 

Mindfulness Helps You Feel Good about Helping

By Jeremy Adam Smith | January 26, 2015

A new study suggests how we can reap greater emotional rewards from helping others.

 

Variety is the Spice of Emotional Life

By Kira M. Newman | December 22, 2014

A new paper finds that cultivating a diversity of emotions—positive or negative—can make us happier and healthier.

 
A protestor in Berkeley, California, after grand juries decided not to indict police officers in the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner.

Can Mindfulness Help Reduce Racism?

By Jill Suttie | December 9, 2014

Can we override hidden prejudice? A new study says, yes, it can be done—and the key might be mindfulness meditation.

 
A boy stands outside his home following the devastating 2009  earthquake in Padang, Indonesia.

Can Giving Thanks Help Us Heal from Trauma?

By Jeremy Adam Smith | November 26, 2014

Two recent studies looked at the role of gratitude in helping survivors of violence in the Middle East and natural disaster in Asia.

 

The Sharing Effect

By Summer Allen | November 24, 2014

A new study explores why sharing emotional experiences—even negative ones—makes us feel better

 

Three Benefits To Mindfulness at Work

By Jeremy Adam Smith | November 17, 2014

Four new studies point toward three benefits to cultivating moment-to-moment awareness in the workplace.

 

Can Diversity Make You a Better Communicator?

By Summer Allen | November 10, 2014

A new study finds that people with diverse social roles show stronger brain responses to nonverbal signals from other people.

 

Can Purpose Keep You Alive?

By Neil Si-Jia Zhang | August 27, 2014

Young people: Do you want to live longer? Try finding a sense of purpose in your life.

 

Can Mindfulness Help Mothers of Severely Disabled Children?

By Summer Allen | August 25, 2014

A new study suggests a way to help the parents of children with autism and other developmental disorders.

 

How Self-Compassion Beats Rumination

By Linda Graham | August 20, 2014

A new study suggests that self-compassion improves mood, largely by helping us avoid negative rumination.

 

What Makes a Happy Parent?

By Emily Nauman | August 19, 2014

Are parents really less happy than non-parents, as many recent books and studies have suggested? New research finds that the truth is surprising and complicated.

 

Green Cities, Happy Cities

By Heather Yundt | July 9, 2014

A new study suggests that just moving to a greener urban area improves our mental health for at least three years following the move.

 

Can’t Get Therapy? Try Gratitude and Kindness

By Lauren Klein | July 7, 2014

A new study finds that troubled people can reap enormous benefits from keeping a journal that focuses their attention on the good things in life.

 

Can Mindful Managers Make Happier Employees?

By Hooria Jazaieri | June 30, 2014

Want more productive and satisfied employees? A new study suggests that companies should consider mindfulness training for managers.

 

Need a Kidney? Go to a Happy State

By Craig L Anderson | June 13, 2014

A new study suggests that feelings of happiness might actually spur extraordinary acts of altruism.

 

Self-Compassionate Parents, Happier Teens

By Emily Nauman | June 9, 2014

A new study finds that children of mindfully self-compassionate parents tend to have lower rates of anxiety and depression.

 

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The Path to Purpose By William Damon Looks at how children are hampered in their search for meaning, and how concerned adults can help them find it.

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"It is a great good and a great gift, this Greater Good. I bow to you for your efforts to bring these uplifting and illuminating expressions of humanity, grounded in good science, to the attention of us all."  
Jon Kabat-Zinn

Best-selling author and founder of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program

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