205 episodes

Let's look at life through the lens of our ancestors. Our instincts were shaped by their struggles in an environment much different than our current environment. Our instincts haven't changed much but our environment has changed dramatically. We blend the science of evolutionary psychology with the clinical experience of Doug Lisle, PhD to explore common problems and stumbling points in our pursuit of happiness.

We are live on Wednesdays at 8:30-9:30pm PST. If you have a question or comment, or maybe even a complicated situation that you'd like some advice on, feel free to call us live at 657-383-0751 or email us at BeatYourGenes@gmail.com .

Check out our website for the recommended reading list and more: www.beatyourgenes.org

Beat Your Genes Podcast BeatYourGenes

    • Life Sciences

Let's look at life through the lens of our ancestors. Our instincts were shaped by their struggles in an environment much different than our current environment. Our instincts haven't changed much but our environment has changed dramatically. We blend the science of evolutionary psychology with the clinical experience of Doug Lisle, PhD to explore common problems and stumbling points in our pursuit of happiness.

We are live on Wednesdays at 8:30-9:30pm PST. If you have a question or comment, or maybe even a complicated situation that you'd like some advice on, feel free to call us live at 657-383-0751 or email us at BeatYourGenes@gmail.com .

Check out our website for the recommended reading list and more: www.beatyourgenes.org

    205: Moderation vs. fanaticism in life pursuits, Social media as pleasure trap

    205: Moderation vs. fanaticism in life pursuits, Social media as pleasure trap

    In today's episode Dr. Lisle & Dr. Howk answer the following questions:


    1. My brother never does anything in moderation, for example if he starts working out, he'll organize his life around it, stop all social drinking and the like. Then he will eventually feel empty and complain he's burnt out. My question is, is he destined to live in this open-unstable roller-coaster ride, or can I give him some advice (perhaps Harry Browne style) that will help him find his place?


    2. I've heard Dr. Howk talk about social media as a potential pleasure trap, and I was wondering if she could go into more depth on that. What are the circuits being hijacked? What advice would you give to a low-key social media addict?

    • 1 hr 3 min
    204: Do emotions trigger relapses? How to prevent/minimize addictive relapse?

    204: Do emotions trigger relapses? How to prevent/minimize addictive relapse?

    In this episode, Dr. Lisle & Dr. Howk briefly discuss a recent article titled, "Harvard researchers help explain link between emotion and addictive substance use". 

    https://www.hks.harvard.edu/faculty-research/policy-topics/health/report-sadness-triggers-addictive-behavior

    They discuss addiction, relapsing, channel factors, Dr. Howk shares a personal story, and we answer the following listener question:

    Most of the people I know use chemicals to manage their lives as least in some aspects: coffee to wake up, alcohol for social lubrication, SSRIs when feeling down, and beta blockers for anxiety, even Adderall or cocaine for productivity and charisma and so on. Even knowing what I know, it's hard to resist the feeling that I'm leaving some competitive advantage on the table by not partaking. I assume you would discourage the use of most if not all of these substances. It it because you think they are all net negative in the long run, or do you find the whole concept puts the cart before the horse by trying to mold emotions to fit the environment instead of working on the environment? Are there any exceptions?

    • 54 min
    203: New Year's resolutions, Pleasure Trap, Health questions

    203: New Year's resolutions, Pleasure Trap, Health questions

    In today's show, we'll get the Dr's take on a recent study "Surviving and Thriving: Fundamental Social Motives Provide Purpose in Life" published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin." https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/0146167219883604


    We'll also go over these questions:


    1. Where do New Year's resolutions come from?  Why start something Jan 1 vs. any other random day?


    2.  Dr. Lisle & Dr. Howk discuss the most common New Year's resolution:  weight loss


    3. What do the Dr's think about the work of Dr. John Sarno in curing chronic back pain using education of how the mind works as treatment? According to Dr. Sarno childhood abuse can lead to rage in the unconscious mind and brain triggers TMS or chronic pain to repress this internal rage and there have been hundreds of people who have cured their back ache after reading his book, Healing Back Pain

    • 58 min
    202: Leaving an unhappy marriage, Flirting, Toxic parents, Needy friends

    202: Leaving an unhappy marriage, Flirting, Toxic parents, Needy friends

    Today's questions are:

     

    1. I’ve been married to a 90% disagreeable man for 42 years. Many times I’ve packed my bags but never followed through. I dream of being on my own, doing the little things in life without being questioned. As he has gotten older his drinking has become a problem. Every year finds me more depressed. How to know when to go?

    2.why do men flirt? I am falling for a guy who is a huge flirt. I see him flirting with me and with other women, and he has a long distance, long term girlfriend who he is faithful to. Why does he flirt so much? Why am I falling for him even though I know he doesn't mean anything serious by flirting?

    3. How do you deal with toxic and controlling parents who like to believe that they are doing RIGHT by continuing to control your life well into your adulthood ? Is it normal to feel that you have a hate relationship with your mother because of lack of support and love to you? As a daughter it feels awful to feel it this way but I can’t get over the fact that having a distant and uncaring mother has driven me into agreeing to marry a person who is totally different to me in personality. Even to this date my mother still emotionally blackmails me to not get a divorce by using her health as a reason. You can divorce your spouse but how can you ever divorce your mother and get over it without feeling the guilt?

    4. A friend of mine is having some troubles getting in touch with his friends regularly. He always thinks, if I (or anyone else) doesn't contact him first, I don't like him anymore. It seems to me like he is suffering from some kind of inferiority complex in that sense. How do you explain such a behavior in an evolutionary sense or to broaden my question, why do people suffer from inferiority complexes and how can they try to overcome such feelings?

    • 51 min
    201: Accessing the subconscious, Depression from illness, Brain maturity

    201: Accessing the subconscious, Depression from illness, Brain maturity

    Today's questions:

    1. Is it true that there are parts of the mind that we don't have access to, like a "subconscious?" Put another way, is there any information in our mind that we cannot reach down and consider with our conscious thinking? Some neuroscientists talk about thoughts as if they are served up to our awareness. But it seems like we can "direct" our thoughts. But can we "access" all the information and ideas that are in the darker corners of our brain's file cabinets?

    2. You mentioned in episode 2 that people can also get depressed about their personal survival, like in the case of discovering they have cancer, but you didn't elaborate on what purpose that might serve evolutionarily. People in the Stone age wouldn't have known they had terminal cancer, but they might have a good sense that a disease or wound was almost certainly going to fester and kill them... What are the genes telling this person to do and why?  As a follow up, once a person can accept their impending death with certainty, should the depressive feelings decrease or end? Do people who embrace their mortality find relief and the ability to enjoy their remaining time relatively stress-free?

    3. Why do human brains take so long to mature to competence? Yes we are born relatively early to accommodate the size of the head, but it's not a matter of a few more months. No other animal is so helpless for so many years. Are human brains slow to mature because they are so adaptable, so they hold off on forming synapses right away? Or is it because they simply have so many neurons to wire up in more complex ways compared to other animals, it truly takes that long? If the former, what is it about human intelligence that is so much slower to wire up if it's all hard-coded by the DNA anyway, and what advantage is there in postponing the ability to walk etc for so long?

    • 42 min
    200: Episode 200

    200: Episode 200

    We celebrate this milestone episode with some fun questions for Dr. Lisle and Dr. Howk. 

    • 1 hr 3 min

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