Episodes
Does it ever feel like you—or someone you know—is always entering a relationship that’s doomed? According to psychology researcher, Raquel Peel, you may be falling victim to a surprising foe—yourself. Raquel studies “romantic self-sabotage,” the patterns and behaviors that can keep a person from having successful relationships, or justify their failures. In this episode, she outlines common destructive habits to watch out for, and gives guidance on how to recover if you spiral into sabotage....
Published 07/19/21
Have you ever had a rude co-worker or boss — or have you ever been told that the “jerk” is you? Today’s guest, Christine Porath, researches incivility in the workplace. She’s found that if you want to have a thriving business full of happy and talented employees, there is no room for any kind of disrespect. In this episode, she shares insights from her research and suggests ways anyone—bosses, managers, and employees alike—can up the civility at work. Christine teaches at Georgetown...
Published 07/12/21
What do we mean when we call ourselves “allies”? For Dr. Nita Mosby Tyler, being an ally means being a person that uses their own resources and privileges to stand beside people that are marginalized. She explains why we need "unlikely allies" in the fight for justice, and why people who are experiencing inequality first hand must be willing to accept the help if we all want the world to be a fairer, more equitable place. Dr. Nita Mosby Tyler is the Chief Catalyst and Founder of The Equity...
Published 07/05/21
How would you describe your community? And what if the stories you tell have the power to save someone from injustice? With the popularity and support of movements like Black Lives Matter, it seems the world is reckoning with how we think about the systems and institutions that support mass incarceration. Today’s guest, Raj Jayadev, wants us to focus on “proximate, intimate change” in our local communities and courts. He is the co-founder and coordinator of Silicon Valley De-Bug, a community...
Published 06/28/21
If you choose to be in a relationship —long or short term— how do you go about picking the right person to spend your time with? And once you are in that relationship, how can you be a good partner? Can you avoid it ending badly? George Blair-West is a relationship expert, researcher, and doctor specializing in psychiatry with a private practice in Brisbane, Australia. He co-authored the book "How to make the biggest decision of your life: Unlocking the secrets to a healthy lasting...
Published 06/21/21
Do you remember the first time you used “Google” as a verb? Or a time before there were “selfies”? Language is constantly evolving, and as a result provides limitless opportunities to change how we see the world. Juli Delgado Lopera is the author of the acclaimed novel “Fiebre Tropical” (Feminist Press 2020), which was recently awarded the LAMBDA Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction. A Colombian now living in the U.S., Juli breaks down boundaries of English and Spanish in their work by...
Published 06/14/21
What’s your favorite dish — and what culture originated that recipe? Whether you’re thinking about grilled cheese, burritos, curry, pho… (we would go on but we are getting too hungry) trying something delicious opens you up to new experiences and conversations. Sean Sherman, Oglala Lakota, is a chef and food educator who focuses on revitalizing and reclaiming indigenous food systems in a modern culinary context. In today’s episode, he shares how increasing access to indigenous food practices...
Published 06/07/21
When most people think about poop, they think about shame and embarrassment. It’s something they don’t want to talk about and that prevents us from learning things—like the number of times a day we should be going number two—that can keep us healthy! On this episode, Dr. Jen Gunter tells us why some of the things we’ve been told about poop are a load of crap, what makes the gut the “second brain” of the body, and how what you eat goes from food to feces. By the end, you’ll know everything you...
Published 05/31/21
When was the last time you got lost in a book? If it’s been a minute, today’s guest might recommend you visit a local library or bookstore ASAP. Michelle Kuo is a teacher, lawyer, writer who is passionate about reading in communities with other people, whether that's through book clubs or in prisons. In this episode, we talk about how reading skills reveal the bridging power of the written word -- as well as the limitations of its power. In 2017, she released “Reading with Patrick”, a memoir...
Published 05/24/21
Roleplaying games and the Marvel universe may be fictional, but they can also teach us a lot about morality in the real world. Christopher Robichaud is a Lecturer in Ethics and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. In this episode, he shares ways we can explore important, everyday issues in fun, safe, and unexpected ways. Christopher has made a career out of teaching ethics and philosophy using pop culture, dissecting moral questions using anything from zombie apocalypse...
Published 05/17/21
After scrolling through your social media feeds, how do you feel? Empowered and connected -- anxious, or exhausted? When stand up, actor, and writer Aparna Nancherla was just starting out, her jokes on Twitter got her recognition in a way that traditional comedy clubs probably could never have. But having built a comedy career for herself, in large part, by being on the internet, she recognizes that social media is not always fun and laughs. Now, for the sake of her mental health, she limits...
Published 05/10/21
Can money really buy happiness? Michael Norton is a social science researcher who studies how we feel about our spending decisions. His work explores questions like: What’s the best way to spend your cash? How much should you donate to charity? Do credit cards make us unhappy? In this episode, Michael shares the sometimes-surprising findings that can help you use our money to improve your life. Michael is a professor of business administration in the marketing unit at the Harvard Business...
Published 05/03/21
In life and work, we have a hard time changing course. When we wind up in a miserable job, a failing project, or a floundering romantic relationship, we rationalize, make excuses, and stick with our bad decisions—even when the writing's on the wall. Why? Usually we assume the driving force is sunk costs: we don't want to admit we've wasted that time or money. But in fact, the root of our stubbornness is a psychological trap called “escalation of commitment.” Once we understand that, we can...
Published 04/26/21
Sometimes it feels like fighting climate change is all about dealing with the many little things we as individuals are doing wrong (hello single-use coffee cups, plastic bags, and eating dairy). While these bad habits are important to address, are we losing focus on the bigger picture? Luisa Neubauer draws on her experience at the front lines of activism to strategically reframe the climate crisis and identify the unique ways we can make systemic change. Luisa Neubauer is a climate activist,...
Published 04/19/21
How did you sleep last night? Whether you sleep next to someone or not, in today’s episode Wendy Troxel offers tips on how to catch better z’s. Wendy is a Senior Behavioral and Social Scientist at RAND who explores how sleep affects our relationships, well-being and society at large. As a licensed clinical psychologist, she specializes in behavioral treatments for insomnia and other sleep disorders. Wendy has received several awards and honors for her research from national and international...
Published 04/12/21
Do you volunteer in your community? Don’t feel bad if the answer is no. Whether you are currently involved in a cause or not, you probably have some mental image of what it means to be a volunteer. Doniece Sandoval has been doing transformative work for years, most recently as the founder of Lava MaeX, a San Francisco-based nonprofit that began by converting public transportation buses into bathrooms on wheels for the homeless. In today’s episode, she shares tips on how to get started with a...
Published 04/05/21
Humans need to have conversations every day-- at our jobs, in our homes, in government-- so how can we handle these better? Celeste Headlee is an award winning journalist who has done everything from anchoring morning news on public radio to covering presidential campaigns. In this episode, Celeste shares practical tips for anyone looking to improve their conversational skills, arguing that better conversations are well within our reach. Celeste is the author of “We Need to Talk: How to Have...
Published 03/29/21
Families can be the cause of both great happiness and deep struggle. In today’s episode, Glen shares how he uses humor and empathy to redefine fatherhood, equip parents, and inspire children. Glen Henry is a musician, writer, and content creator, who believes documenting and sharing the ups --and downs-- of family life can help everyone feel less alone. In 2015, Glen created the YouTube channel Beleaf In Fatherhood where he welcomes viewers into his home to show the misadventures of...
Published 03/22/21
Sex is such a big part of being human. It's how our species persists, but it's also so much more than that. So why do we feel so uncomfortable talking about it? Emily Nagoski is a sex educator who argues that learning how to talk openly about sex — and unlearning some damaging misconceptions— can give you access to a more authentic and fulfilling sex life. She has a Ph.D. in health behavior, clinical internship experience at the Kinsey Institue, and is the author of the best-selling book...
Published 03/15/21
“What am I doing with my life? Where am I going?” During this isolated time, many of us are having to readjust our identities because our visions for what life was supposed to look like completely shifted -- and so perhaps has the locus of our self-worth. Dr. Meag-gan O'Reilly is a licensed Staff Psychologist at Stanford University's Counseling and Psychological Services. In this episode, she offers helpful frameworks for cultivating a life --and society-- that can better recognize the basic...
Published 03/08/21
Many of us are spending the majority of our time confined to our homes and becoming aware of how the space we're in can affect our well-being. Design expert David Korins has made countless spaces come alive-- from corporate offices and Lady Gaga concerts to Broadway hits like Hamilton and Dear Evan Hansen. In this episode, he offers insights on how anyone can approach design and create the ideal environments in which to live, work, and play. David is the founder and principal designer of...
Published 03/01/21
A doctor’s visit, even in the best of times, can be overwhelming to navigate. Dr. Leana Wen is an emergency physician and public health advocate who is committed to patient advocacy. In this episode, Dr. Wen shares tips on how to be a better patient and increase the effectiveness of your care. The author of dozens of scientific articles on emergency systems and patient-centered health reform, Dr. Wen is a visiting professor of health policy and management at George Washington University’s...
Published 02/22/21
What do we mean when we call ourselves “allies”? For Dr. Nita Mosby Tyler, being an ally means being a person that uses their own resources and privileges to stand beside people that are marginalized. She explains why we need "unlikely allies" in the fight for justice, and why people who are experiencing inequality first hand must be willing to accept the help if we all want the world to be a fairer, more equitable place. Dr. Nita Mosby Tyler is the Chief Catalyst and Founder of The Equity...
Published 02/15/21
Water coolers, office bagels, frigid spaces with fluorescent lighting. Today's episode is all about work. It’s how we pay the bills, but it’s also how many of us derive purpose, meaning and structure from our days. Whether you're unemployed, salaried, or your own boss, the world of work is changing. David Burkus sees this as an opportunity to think consciously about what to change when it comes to how, where, and when we work. David is an author, podcaster and associate professor of...
Published 02/08/21
Is your family, community, or even your country more divided than ever? Today’s guest Robb Willer is here to share some compelling insights on how we might bridge the ideological divide and offer some intuitive advice on ways to be more persuasive. Robb is a professor of sociology, psychology and organizational behavior at Stanford University. He studies the role of morality in politics. His research shows how moral values, typically a source of ideological division, can also be used to bring...
Published 02/01/21