Brain Yapping – The Podcast; an amusing, entertaining, ramshackle and illuminating look at how science can really work hosted by neuroscientist and author, Dr Dean Burnett (The Idiot Brain, The Happy Brain) and journalist Rachel England. Part of the Cosmic Shambles Network.
Sometimes things are just crap. And that's OK
And so we reach the final episode in this series of Brain Yapping, and after 12+ weeks of discussing how the brickbats and misfortunes of life have affected them, what have Dean and Rachel learned? They’ve learned, basically, that shit happens. But also, you aren’t obliged to find 'deeper meaning', or 'silver linings', or 'positive outcomes' from it. Not every trauma has to have an upbeat spin, and while it’s fine to acknowledge and accept that bad things happen, it’s also fine to wish they hadn’t. The modern obsession with focussing on the positives may be doing us more harm than good overall. N.B. This isn’t meant as a general review of the series. Thanks for listening. We’ll be with you again soon. Support the show at patreon.com/cosmicshambles and get lots of extra content!
A Wake to Possibilities
Since the last episode, Rachel has gone on two trips, and Dean has attended his father’s wake, more than 18 months after his passing. As a result, our hosts discuss the importance of rituals and ceremonies for our wellbeing, the cons and unexpected pros of long intervals between, and whether the pandemic has presented us with an opportunity to rejig traditional customs, to make them more beneficial for everyone. Also includes the worst wedding tribute of all time. Support the podcast and The Cosmic Shambles Network by becoming a subscriber at patreon.com/cosmicshambles
Throughout the pandemic and lockdown, a lot of attention and emphasis was placed on exercise, and keeping fit. Countless people insist that it’s a key facet of good mental health. But, is it? Can regular exercise really be such a potent benefit to Mental Health? If so, why? If not, what’s the deal there? And can it end up doing more harm than good? With both of them engaging in their own efforts to be fitter, Dean and Rachel explore this issue in depth. Support the show at patreon.com/cosmicshambles and get lots of extra content!
Remembering lockdowns… or not
Dean and Rachel return to their podcast after an unplanned hiatus, during which they genuinely forgot they were in the middle of doing a podcast. But problems with memory and thinking are thing that many have complained about during the pandemic. What’s going on there? Why would having a more predictable life make you less able to remember it? Our intrepid Brain Yappers explore. And Dean, who has a PhD in memory formation and retrieval mechanisms, finally gets to be an actual relevant expert for once, rather than just blagging it while Rachel humours him. Support the podcast by subscribing at patreon.com/cosmicshambles
How's the Weather?
The return to normal life continues apace, and having run out of everything else to talk about, Dean and Rachel fall back on the classic British standby: the weather. But for a good reason; with travel still restricted and indoor pursuits only tentatively available, the weather plays a bigger role in our day-to-day lives than ever. How does this affect our moods and mental wellbeing, and why? Support the Brain Yapping podcast and the CSN as a whole by subscribing at patreon.com/cosmicshambles
Returning to Normalish
With vaccine rollouts proceeding apace, weather improving, and lockdown restrictions easing, it seems like life is returning to some sort of normality. But what’s it like to go from prolonged lockdown to in-person socialising? Are we going back to normal, or is it some strange new reality, with new rules and expectation? And what effects can this have on us on our wellbeing, and why are some people likely to find the process surprisingly stressful. Support the podcast, and the Cosmic Shambles Network as a whole at patreon.com/cosmicshambles
Rachel and Dean are great to listen to. Obviously very well-informed, they wear it very lightly, covering each topic well, but with humour and empathy.
Likeable and informative
presenters have a really good chemistry ~ dealing with emotional psychological issues with skill, sensitivity and humour. Thank you!👏🏽👏🏽
Very informative and enjoyable to listen to.