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For a long time, scientists believed our capacity for empathy remains more or less fixed throughout our lives. But research by Jamil Zaki, a psychology professor at Stanford, shows that empathy is actually a skill we can cultivate. Jamil explains that there are different types of empathy — three, to be exact! — and we can learn to be more discerning about when we apply them. Maya and Jamil also discuss the dangers of caring too much, and how we can show compassion for others while avoiding burnout. For a behind-the-scenes look at the show, follow @DrMayaShankar on Instagram. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Science writer Florence Williams felt blindsided when her twenty-five-year marriage unexpectedly fell apart. The heartbreak opened her up to a whole range of new and intense feelings, but it also made her sick. Trained as a journalist, Florence set out on an expedition to understand the science of heartbreak and game her way back to health. She tried novel forms of therapy, immersed herself in nature, and consulted cutting-edge research on the science of awe. But her greatest discovery came when she tried an alternative to “hacking” heartbreak.  If you’re interested in hearing more of Florence’s story, listen to “Heartbreak: A Personal and Scientific Journey,” a uniquely immersive audiobook, narrated by the author and accompanied by in-the-moment diary recordings and interviews. For a behind-the-scenes look at the show, follow @DrMayaShankar on Instagram. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
It's only March and we're already starting to veer off track with our resolutions for the year. Don't worry! 90% of people fail to reach their goals each year, which means there's got to be a better way. On this episode of How To!, a listener named Emily is feeling discouraged by her eating habits and lack of exercise. Maya, a behavioral scientist, helps Emily (and the rest of us!) form better habits so we can set ourselves up for success.  Hear more episodes of How To! wherever you listen to podcasts.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Influence is often seen as a skill we have to cultivate, a charismatic quality leveraged by select leaders, business people, and successful social media accounts. But in her new book, “You Have More Influence Than You Think,” social psychologist Vanessa Bohns demonstrates that we all have influence through our words, choices, and even just our presence. Maya and Vanessa discuss how we can become more aware of our power to persuade, and learn to wield it wisely. For a behind-the-scenes look at the show, follow @DrMayaShankar on Instagram. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Lately, comedian Hasan Minhaj is taking a second look at his motives for performing. Hasan was initially drawn to comedy because it allowed him to hold people in power accountable. In shows like “Patriot Act" and "The Daily Show," he often took on controversial topics and challenged world leaders. But after some of his provocative commentary went viral, he realized his motives were less pure than he thought. In this conversation, Hasan reveals how that realization is making him reconsider his career altogether. For a behind-the-scenes look at the show, follow @DrMayaShankar on Instagram. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Upside of Stress

The Upside of Stress

2023-02-2134:233

We’re all familiar with the ways that stress can make us feel bad. But professor and stress expert Modupe Akinola argues that a simple change in our mindset can turn short-term stress into a helpful resource. Modupe walks us through some strategies for how to better tolerate and understand our stress, and gives us tools for coping when a small “mindset shift” isn’t enough. You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A Slight Change of Plans returns February 20, with new personal stories of change, including an interview with comedian Hasan Minhaj about the pitfalls of his career path. Maya also talks with scientific experts about new ways of looking at heartbreak, empathy, stress, and other life-changing topics. Here’s a sneak peek at the season ahead! For a behind-the-scenes look at the show, follow @DrMayaShankar on Instagram.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
When it comes to reaching our big goals, focusing too much on natural ability can be counterproductive because it’s something we can’t change. Instead, psychologist Angela Duckworth wants us to focus on cultivating grit. For our final episode of this special New Years miniseries, Maya selected this interview from the archives about grit, which Angela defines as a “power combination of passion and perseverance.” Plus, Angela offers four key strategies we can use to more easily resist temptations and stay the course. As always, we’d love to hear which insights resonate most with you. You can connect with Maya on Instagram at @drmayashankar.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
One thing that can hold us back from becoming better versions of ourselves is when we stubbornly cling to old beliefs and ways of thinking. So, for the second installment of our New Year’s guide to the science of change, Maya handpicks an interview from the archives with Adam Grant, psychologist and author of the book “Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know.” Adam gives us strategies for cultivating a more open mind. Plus, Maya and Adam debate the merits of imposter syndrome and the importance of revisiting our fundamental beliefs about the world, not just our opinions. As always, we’d love to hear which insights resonate most with you. You can connect with Maya on Instagram at @drmayashankar.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Maya wants to help you achieve your goals for the new year, so she's sharing some of her favorite interviews about the science of change from the archives, starting with her friend and fellow cognitive scientist, Dr. Katy Milkman. Dr. Milkman shares evidence-based strategies we can use to change our behavior, including leveraging identity shifts and making habits more pleasurable, through techniques such as the fresh start effect and temptation bundling. Also, she argues for the power of a “commitment device” which locks you into a plan to reach your long-term goals. We'd love to hear about which insights resonate most with you and which ones you’re planning to try out! You can connect with Maya on Instagram at @drmayashankar.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
At age nine, Javier Zamora embarked on a harrowing, 3000-mile immigration journey from El Salvador to the United States. More than twenty years later, he’s finally ready to revisit that period of life and what it took for him to survive such treacherous circumstances.  You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
We’re on break for the holiday this week, and Maya wanted to share a quick note with listeners.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Hi Slight Changers — this past Friday, Elizabeth Holmes, the founder and CEO of the fraudulent biotech company Theranos was sentenced to 11.25 years in a Federal prison. I wanted to reshare my interview with Erika Cheung today. She had the courage to stand up for what was right and blow the whistle, even when her personal safety was at risk. Erika was instrumental in bringing Holmes to justice.  You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy is an expert on the science of loneliness. He offers advice for how we can build stronger, more meaningful social connections.  You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
When Surviving is Enough

When Surviving is Enough

2022-11-0743:442

After Nora McInerny’s husband died of cancer in his thirties, Nora became well known for writing about the messiness of grief. She also led grief groups, launched a podcast about grief, and started a non-profit. Nothing Nora did ever felt like enough, until a terrifying moment made her slow down and take a hard look at her own grieving process. You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Jason Isbell is a singer-songwriter and four-time Grammy winner. After wrestling with addiction, he re-examines aspects of his personality that he once saw as his greatest weaknesses.  You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Annie Duke believes we should be quitting things more often, a skill she honed during her lucrative years as a professional poker player on the world stage. Annie talks about the science of quitting, and shows us how to get out of our own way and learn to quit when we should. You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Priya Parker is an expert in group dialogue and conflict resolution, and she uses her unique background to rethink how we come together. Priya teaches us how to turn our gatherings into opportunities for more meaningful connection with others.  You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
As a firefighter, Christy Warren made rescuing people her life's work. Her toughness earned her praise from her peers. But after decades of rescuing others, suddenly Christy became the one who needed saving. You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Science of Regret

The Science of Regret

2022-10-0344:535

Author Daniel Pink teaches us how to transform our relationship with regret so that we can live happier, more fulfilling lives.  You can follow the show on Instagram @DrMayaShankar. If you’d like to keep up with the most recent news from this and other Pushkin podcasts be sure to sign up for our email list at Pushkin.fm.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Comments (19)

Meeae Dienemann

I like this podcast, but one wonders who is the interviewer, Maya or Michael. sounds more like Michael

Dec 28th
Reply

Levi Wekesa

Thank you Maya for this show. It's soul refreshing

Dec 25th
Reply

quietauthentic ebaytriangle

Despite the danger to her own life, she had the guts to speak up and defend what was right. Erika played a crucial role in prosecuting Holmes: https://quordle2.com

Dec 22nd
Reply

ID19619055

Thank you!

Nov 12th
Reply

Robin Blacknell

Incredible interview!

Oct 13th
Reply

Jeevan

🙏🏻😅

Aug 21st
Reply

Bridie Begbie

Such a thoughtful, insightful interviewer. Amazing to hear about the brave personal and medical decisions made in this rescue and the resilience of those being rescued.

Jul 19th
Reply

majopareja

So beautiful and so sad...

May 18th
Reply

King Tee is Free

This man's perspective assumes that you can change racists' perspective with logic. What do you do about the ones who could let him talk until he's blue in the face and then execute him without a second thought? What do you do about the ones who know everything he's saying is true but promote racial division because it benefits them financially? It sounds like he's just been lucky that he hasn't run into the wrong one yet.

Apr 26th
Reply

Ronald Bell

Just as John came to see and feel and experience emotion through the TMS treatment, I too felt a sudden awareness of relating to the Adam and Eve creation story in Genisis of how in our humanness we experience good and evil.

Dec 10th
Reply

Shilan G

Oh my goodness what a great story, it was so inspiring! She is one of the wisest people that I know and has such a big heart. Our world needs more people like her ♥️

Dec 8th
Reply

Mary Mary

this was an amazing talk. thank you both so much

Jul 18th
Reply

Laurie Henson

Girl, you need to stop thinking soo much and stop looking around for things to be unhappy about. You can overcome your addiction. Even without therapy groups. Seems your looking to be felt sorry for. Being an eore. I gained a lot of weight, am older and everyone treats me differently. Exactly the opposite of you. It is what it is. Be glad for better health not focused on weight. Your maki g your one life a miserable one. Start doing for yourself and doing what makes you happy. Live your best life and build great memories! This is too much what your doing to yourself mentally. Look into Dr. Wayne Dyer books and Ram Das. Or audiobooks on them. Congratulations on your successes, BTW. Now go! And don’t look back! 💪🏽👏❤️

Jul 11th
Reply (1)

Debora Meehan

Love the pod cast and Darryl's story was incredibly moving!

Jun 17th
Reply

Jyothish Chandran

Maya, All the best. I am trying to patch up my routine of listening to pod casts after a painful event in my life. This is truly an interesting topic to listen and kick start the day with someone else's life changing events. Truly excited..

Jun 17th
Reply

Jungamy

This was a terrific episode! Darryl brings such a different perspective on racism and how things can change for the better. Thank you for spreading his message. Great interview Maya!

May 25th
Reply (2)
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