Next Friday the 20th March is the 3rd United Nations International Day of Happiness. This year’s theme is ‘Your Happiness is part of Something Bigger’ and people around the world are being invited to make positive connections and share their happiness with others. In recognition of this day Axiom Psychological Services will be holding a Free Wellbeing Workshop from 10:00am – 11:30am on Friday the 20th March. Registration is essential as places are limited. Please call 4324 5400 for more information and to reserve your place.read more
Oliver Sacks shares how gratitude in the face of adversity continues to give his life richness, meaning and clarity.read more
The concept of being ‘Right Brained’ or ‘Left Brained’ may be up for debate based on new research. http://info.hoganassessments.com/blog/mythbusters-series-right-brained-vs.-left-brainedread more
Don’t be fooled by that dumb-dog look – he understands you, really.
If you are worried that your dog is not paying attention to what you are saying, simply look at where is he is staring.
Dogs look to the right when they recognise familiar commands because they process the sound in a specific part of their brains that remembers that the sound is important.
Researchers at the University of Sussex discovered that dogs respond to speech in much the same way as humans do, processing recognisable sounds in the left hemisphere of the brain.
In contrast, unusual noises or speech are processed in the right hemisphere.
However, due to cross-wiring in the brain, if a dog turns to the right it means the left side of the brain is processing the words, and vice versa.
Victoria Ratcliffe, associate tutor in the School of Psychology at the University of Sussex, said the results support the idea that pets are paying attention “not only to who we are and how we say things, but also to what we say”.
She added: “Although we cannot say how much or in what way dogs understand information in speech from our study, we can say that dogs react to both verbal and speaker-related information, and that these components appear to be processed in different areas of the dog’s brain.”
Researchers looked at how dogs responded when their owners told them to “come on”. When presented with familiar spoken commands, in a usual tone, dogs showed a left-hemisphere processing bias and turned to the right, indicating that they recognised what was being said.
However, when the command was said in a different tone and speed, the dogs could no longer process it as a familiar sound and so looked to the left.
Dr David Reby, a researcher at the University of Sussex, said: “This is particularly interesting because our results suggest that the processing of speech components in the dog’s brain is divided between the two hemispheres in a way that is actually very similar to the way it is separated in the human brain.”
Scientists point out that the study does not show that dogs understand what their owners are saying or have any language ability.
However, they believe the ability to process the familiar commands in a specific part of the brain may have evolved as a response to human speech during domestication.
Dogs that could quickly pick up what their owners were saying, and distinguish it from unfamiliar speech, were likely to have been more use to early man.
The findings are reported in the journal Current Biology.
In support of Mental Health Awareness Month we will be conducting a free Anxiety workshop on Wed the 29th of October at 10:00am for those interested in understanding more about anxiety and how to manage and prevent its effects. Places are limited so registration is essential. Please call 4324 5400 to register.read more
Ian Kilpatrick and Sandy Gilbert recently attended a Victims Services event in Newcastle where Sydney psychologist Mark Griffiths presented a workshop about Counselling Male Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse. The information about the effects of child sexual abuse on adult survivors and the treatment methods available to assist recovery was timely; particularly in respect to the current Royal Commission and the increased community awareness regarding this type of trauma. At Axiom psychology both of the principals, George Dieter and Ian Kilpatrick are authorised Victims of Crime providers and can assist in this area.read more
If you feel a bit overwhelmed with the thought of doing the HSC you are not alone. Research suggests that 40%–50% of year 11 & 12 students will struggle with serious, harmful stress. This figure rises in the weeks before the HSC. *
Stop worrying, help is now here! Designed for senior high school students starting their HSC journey and crafted by our skilled, experienced psychologists and educators Axiom Psychological & Coaching Services proudly announces our new program “The HSC – Realise your Potential”.read more
George Dieter is in the final stages of having his second book published. This book takes a detailed look at our relationships and the boundaries and responsibilities which go with each relationship.
George’s first book “Creating Criminals Without Even Trying”. Subtitle “From bouncing babies to career criminal – what happened in between?” can be purchased by contacting us directly.read more