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Mayim Bialik's Breakdown

Author: Mayim Bialik

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Mayim Bialik’s Breakdown is a quirky, informative, and interactive podcast breaking down the myths and misunderstandings about mental health and emotional well-being. Neuroscientist Mayim Bialik combines her academic background with vast personal experience to provide listeners with valuable practical advice focusing on removing the stigma surrounding mental health and encouraging an understanding of the mind-body connection. Nothing is off limits as Mayim breaks it down with an amazing collection of guests.
137 Episodes
Eric Kaplan (EP on The Big Bang Theory, Co-EP on Young Sheldon, M.A. in philosophy) joins us to break down the funniest moments from The Big Bang Theory, philosophy as it relates to mental health, and practical ways to avoid being consumed by fear. He shares the differences between spirituality and religion, his experience as a monk for a brief period of time, and his concerns about selling out when he became a tv writer. Eric opens up about the passing of his older brother and how it affected his family and Eric’s own relationship with his parents, his obsession with death and dying that led him to study philosophy, and his "meditation on emptiness" practice. He explains different types of philosophy, how the concept of a higher power fits into his philosophical belief systems, and helps us answer important questions like "Why do people believe in God?" and "Does everything happen for a reason?" Eric discusses the potential benefits of psilocybin and LSD, the potential origins of climate change denialism, and what he thinks is going right in the world. Mayim and Eric consider how transgenerational trauma can inform cultural traditions, how cultural traditions can provide solutions to that trauma and grief.Eric Kaplan's new podcast, "Terrifying Questions and How Not to Be Terrified By Them":
Marc Maron (stand-up comedian, host of WTF with Marc Maron podcast, actor, author) joins us to break down the arc of grief, the effects of growing up with detached parents, and his journey toward sobriety and defining himself. We discuss Marc’s foray into podcasting, how it enabled a generation of podcasters including MBB, and how his show has evolved over time. He reflects on his past struggles with alcohol and drugs including "cocaine psychosis", his experiences with rehab and therapy, and the positives and negatives of groups like AA. Maron explains how his mother influenced his disordered eating, his father’s narcissism and recent dementia diagnosis, and how his parents’ struggles denied him a fundamental sense of self. He reveals why he thinks he may have had undiagnosed borderline personality disorder, why he chooses to be so revealing in his creative pursuits, and the dangers of early exposure to adult content. Maron opens up about the sudden passing of his girlfriend Lynn Shelton, his inevitable attempt at using humor to relieve his pain, the interconnectedness of grief, the importance of showing up in his state of raw grief for his loyal audience, and the sense of comfort and control he has felt from sharing this experience. He considers his shortcomings as a romantic partner, what he got right with Lynn, and his take on separating the art from the artist.Marc Maron's new HBO special, FROM BLEAK TO DARK:
Bari Weiss (founder and editor of The Free Press, host of the Honestly podcast) opens up about her very public resignation from The New York Times, how the polarized mainstream media and negative newscycle can impact our wellness as a society, and the importance of being able to have conversations with people you may not always agree with. She explains how the digital revolution transformed the business model of news as an institution and considers the source of people’s paranoia with mainstream news, which has led to a rise in conspiracy theories. Bari reveals why her own grandma called her a right wing fascist, the values and historical perspective that guide her to stand up in the face of fear, and what the rise of gurus can tell us about our era. She discusses the importance of community and why sacrificing comfort is sometimes necessary to live a meaningful life.Bari Weiss' new media company, The Free Press: Weiss' podcast, Honestly:
Amber Tamblyn (actress, director, and writer) joins us to discuss all things intuition, from its biological importance and practical ways to be in touch with it, to how modern society has taught us to ignore our intuition and our mind-body connection. She explains why intuition often gets mistaken for anxiety, why feminism matters, the power of the MeToo Movement, and the real societal repercussions of women’s inequality. We also analyze Amber’s recurring wolf dreams, the significance of recurring dreams and consider what it means to redefine the term “psychic.”Amber Tamblyn's new essay collection, Listening In the Dark:
Max Greenfield (New Girl, The Neighborhood, Veronica Mars, Ugly Betty) stops by for a spontaneous chat with Mayim and Jonathan! He opens up about how feeling alone led to addiction, connecting with others brought him to recovery, and how getting a rescue dog changed his life. Max and Mayim discuss their wildly popular shofar performance on The Late Late Show with James Corden and their love of basketball, and Max reveals why he thinks Mayim doesn’t like to be spontaneous. They discuss the challenges that come with progressive parenting as individuals who were raised under an authoritarian parenting style, the importance of consistency in parenting, and how Max’s spirituality provided a good parenting foundation. Mayim and Jonathan explain the importance of checking in with yourself and being accountable to yourself and others, especially in recovery.Max Greenfield's new book, This Book is Not a Present:
Timber Hawkeye (bestselling author of the new book The Opposite of Namaste) rejoins Mayim to discuss the real life friendship they’ve developed after his first appearance on the podcast, why mindfulness can feel intimidating, and the positives and negatives of labels. He details how pursuing a minimalist lifestyle has reduced his anxiety, the value of transparency and repentance, and the inner conflict that comes with being addicted to validation. Mayim and Timber considers the differences between envy and jealousy, the differences between observation and judgment, and how nonconformity can be an asset. Timber explains why he was initially averse to labels but now finds liberation in the term “neurodivergent,” and how he learned to use his anxious and obsessive compulsive tendencies to his benefit. He helps Mayim, Producer Valerie, and Engineer Scott hold a mirror up to their vices.Timber Hawkeye's New Book, The Opposite of Namaste:
Anjelah Johnson-Reyes (stand-up comedian, actress, author) discusses her journey from professional cheerleader to stand up comedy, the benefits of aligning with your intuition, and how she was able to work through physical and emotional trauma with her dad. She opens up about relying on God to reveal her path in life, how her family’s fear about not fitting into American culture kept her from exploring her heritage, and the mindblowing paranormal experience that put her supernatural podcast on hiatus. Mayim and Anjelah recount going on a USO tour together. They consider the difficulty of breaking family patterns, the benefits of assessing practical outcomes for anxiety-inducing situations, and why we subconsciously assign others authority roles over us.Anjelah Johnson-Reyes' book, Who Do I Think I Am?: Anjelah Johnson-Reyes on tour:
Joel Kim Booster (stand-up comedian, writer, actor) opens up about bipolar disorder, his early sexual identity realizations, and the challenges of living at the intersection of a variety of cultures. He discusses the complexities of being adopted as a baby by a white American Baptist family, his tumultuous teenage years of finding himself while grappling with his deeply religious and conservative parents, and how the arts helped him with his coming out process. Joel details how his bipolar diagnosis helped him reframe his life experiences, his “productive” hypomania, the benefits of medication, and why it can be difficult to let go of mental illness. He reveals why social media has been the biggest stressor on his mental health, how the depiction of Asian men fed into his depression, and the frustration and freedom that comes with being “stereotypically gay.” Mayim breaks down the different types of bipolar disorder and how the condition manifests.See more of Joel Kim Booster here:Fire Island is available now on Hulu.Joel’s first hour-long comedy special, PsychoSexual, is available now on Netflix.LOOT is available now on Apple TV+.
Corey Feldman (The Goonies, Stand By Me, The Lost Boys) opens up about his abusive childhood, grappling with the deaths of so many of his friends, and his spirituality. He discusses what he remembers from his early days of acting, why he wishes he had the option to say no to fame, and the abuse he suffered at the hands of his predators and his own parents. Corey reflects on the healing nature of being a parent, how his life has changed since finding sobriety, and the thought patterns he uses to achieve forgiveness for those who have hurt him. He explains being of service as a form of therapy, his love of philosophy, and the exchange of energy he experiences during his performances. Corey Feldman's "Love Left 2.1" Boxset: Corey Feldman on Tour:
Natasha Leggero (actress, writer, comedian, author of The World Deserves My Children) opens up about how she arrived to her unique parenting journey later in life and provides an honest approach to parenting and "geriatric" pregnancy. She discusses the impact of her father leaving the family at an early age before he married her mom’s best friend, and what it was like to help raise her younger siblings as a child herself. Natasha reveals what she wishes more people knew about the egg-freezing process, merging her life as a career woman with caring for a child, and the importance of finding the right partner to parent with. Mayim and Natasha compare parenting styles and consider the challenges of parenting in the face of environmental panic. They discuss reasons some might not want to have children, why kids crave structure, and why we shouldn’t condition children with fear.Natasha Leggero's Book, The World Deserves My Children: Leggero & Moshe Kasher's Podcast, The Endless Honeymoon Podcast:
Jodie Sweetin (Full House, Fuller House, Craft Me a Romance) discusses her work as “Stephanie Tanner” on Full House, living with ADHD and how she thinks it has helped her, and the importance of showing up as the parent you needed to have yourself. She explains how therapy and sobriety allow her to be a better parent and the importance of honesty in a parent-child relationship. Mayim and Jodie consider the need for prison reform after Jodie opens up about being adopted as a baby after she was born within the prison system. They discuss coping mechanisms in nature vs nurture and share their earliest childhood memories. Jodie reveals the top 5 things that keep her centered and ways she redirects feelings of wanting to run away into efforts of self-care.  Jodie Sweetin's memoir, unSweetined:
Mayim and Jonathan are breaking down 2022 for our final episode of the year! They chat about what went right in 2022 - from the news stories that made us laugh and articles tied to important topics we cover here at MBB, to what the year has taught them. Mayim reveals a highlight from this year and a few practical tips she has personally put into action.MBB on IG:'s IG:'s IG:
Meredith Stoddard (Life Events Experience Lead at Fidelity Investments) stops by to discuss how life events and their emotional components can impact finances and the overall human experience. Meredith explains the similarities between life events planning and therapy, practical ways to make financial literacy more accessible to all, and reasons to avoid comparing your financial status and goals with others. Mayim and Meredith consider the benefits of starting small when working toward your financial goals, framing money conversations around wishes instead of fear, and normalizing financial discussions within the family unit. They discuss changing generational attitudes, goals, & behavior toward money and combating misinformation around finances on social media. This content was created in collaboration with Fidelity. Thank you Fidelity for sponsoring this podcast! #adFrom having children to planning for retirement, Fidelity is here to help you manage life’s big moments. public/lifeevents/content/overview
Melanie Chisholm (AKA “Sporty Spice” of the Spice Girls, solo artist, author of The Sporty One memoir) joins us to discuss the Spice Girls’ impact on music and culture, battling difficult personal struggles in the extreme public eye, and the toll playing a caricature of yourself can take. She reveals the origins of the band and their “Girl Power” message, the similarities between each band member and their onstage personas, and why she finally decided to reflect on her experiences in her new memoir. Mel C opens up about the onset of her disordered eating, why she finally decided to seek help, and the toxicity of the tabloid media when Spice Girls rose to fame compared to today’s social media. Mayim and Melanie consider denial as a coping mechanism, the loneliness that comes with disordered eating, and the impact of the loss of Queen Elizabeth II.Melanie Chisholm's memoir, "The Sporty One: My Life as a Spice Girl":
Mara Wilson (writer, actor - Mrs. Doubtfire, Matilda ) opens up about body dysmorphia, living with severe OCD, and the grief of losing her mother at an early age. She details what it was like working with the late, great Robin Williams on Mrs. Doubtfire, her struggle to overcome her "cute" image she became well-known for during those years, and how that fed into her body dysmorphia. Mara discusses growing up a sensitive child, her family’s own intergenerational trauma and how it tied into her own mental health struggles, imposter syndrome, and living up to labels. She considers her experiences with therapy and medication, her spiritual journey, and the differences between dating boys and girls. Mayim and Mara debunk the myths of severe OCD and explain what living with it is really like.Mara Wilson's Book, Where Am I Now?:
Seth Green (Family Guy, Robot Chicken, Austin Powers, Changeland), Mayim’s on-screen boyfriend from their Facts of Life days, stops by to discuss growing up in the entertainment industry alongside Mayim, his experiences with therapy and psychedelics, and why he has always strived to be a good human. He considers why his trajectory turned out so positive compared to other fellow child actors, why he thinks he may have undiagnosed ADHD, and how the condition has helped him in his life. Seth opens up about his experimentation with psychedelics in conjunction with mindfulness and research, how it taught him to detach from his ego and express his emotions, and the possible dangers of hallucinogens. He shares how therapy taught him to forgive his parents, why the search for the right therapist can be so frustrating, and the things that are currently on his self-improvement list. Seth discusses his relationship with marijuana and Mayim breaks down how cannabis can help with sleep-related issues.Watch Seth Green's film, CHANGELAND, on Amazon Prime:
Douglas Rushkoff (digital humanism author and documentarian) helps us break down human autonomy in the digital age and the social implications of the tech world. He takes us through his start in the cyberpunk movement, from goals of uniting humanity through the early internet, the intersections of psychedelics and counter culture with computer programming, through the big business takeover of the internet. Douglas explains the perils of algorithm technology, the evils of cryptocurrency, and how social disconnect can contribute to consumerism. He reveals ways politicians and corporations capitalize on our fears and insecurities to push their own agendas and the factors that led extremist movements like QAnon to become so popular. Mayim and Douglas break down the neuroscience and biology of human connection and consider ways tech physically primes our bodies for dehumanization. They discuss how to combat feelings of helplessness tied to digital media’s prevalence in our daily lives and practical ways to retrain your nervous system to disengage with tech in favor of human connection. Douglas Rushkoff's new book, SURVIVAL OF THE RICHEST: Rushkoff's podcast, TEAM HUMAN:
Raven-Symoné (That’s So Raven, Raven’s Home, The View, Cosby Show) & her wife Miranda Pearman-Maday (content creator, producer, writer, doula) join us to discuss defense mechanisms, their individual therapy journeys, and the confining nature of labels when it comes to sexuality and gender. They explain how their sexualities protected their true identities and their struggles with depression. Raven opens up about her past relationships with people with narcissistic tendencies, her parents’ reservations about therapy, and her PTSD and anger challenges. She and Mayim bond over their strikingly similar coping mechanisms from having grown up as child actors, their abilities to read others, and how celebrity can heighten people-pleasing tendencies. Miranda reveals how somatic therapy has helped her, and Raven shares her positive experiences with shadow and energy work.Raven & Miranda's YouTube Channel: 
Dr. Becky Kennedy (clinical psychologist, founder of Good Inside parenting workshops, author) helps us use attachment, mindfulness, emotion regulation, and internal family systems theory to break down better ways to parent! She not only provides great, practical parenting tips, but also helps us understand our own upbringings, how they impact our lives into adulthood, and provides insight into why our parents did the things they did. Dr. Becky discusses why she found the best way to work with children was actually working with their parents through body-based approaches to psychotherapy, her own paradigm shift in parenting styles, and the differences between attachment parenting and helicopter parenting. She explains the importance of wiring kids for resilience with self-soothing techniques in order to ditch old patterns of behavior, building skills to manage emotions through validation, and how to provide kids with tools to process difficult emotions. Mayim and Dr. Becky define reflective listening, boundaries vs consequences, and how feeling alone can lead to shame and fears of abandonment. They discuss the benefits of learning to embody your authority as a parent, ways to provide structure to a child with anxiety, and the benefits of internal family systems (IFS) therapy. Mayim and Jonathan break down the benefits of cooking with your children.Dr. Becky Kennedy's Book: Becky Kennedy's Parenting Workshops:
Jewel (multi-platinum recording artist, mental health advocate) discusses her lifelong focus on breaking the cycle of "emotional inheritance," the dangers of overidentifying with our thoughts, and how she used awareness and presence to change her life, one thought at a time. She opens up about growing up with an abusive parent who struggled with substance abuse, leaving home at age 15, suffering from panic attacks, and her transition from homelessness to being signed by a recording label. She explains her lifelong intense spiritual relationship with nature, her history of and conceptual motivations for stealing, and how she found safety in isolation. Jewel breaks down the importance of getting in touch with your inner observer, practical ways to distance ourselves from our painful and unproductive thoughts, and her discoveries during her transition to becoming a parent. Mayim and Jonathan consider the relationship between knowledge & awareness and spiritual awakenings.Jewel's Inspiring Children Foundation:
Comments (152)

Grunkle Hatter

See, not so hard to put someone from academia on was it?, and we learned something! This episode is not a skip!

Feb 4th
Reply (2)

Grunkle Hatter

I wish you would talk to real academics and all these celebrities who do not speak to me and tune out, use that Degree Mayim! or did you not make any academic freinds?

Jan 22nd
Reply (56)

Negar Yeganeh

One of the best episodes… I love it when people talk about their thinking processes and perceptions of life and their personal experience Thank you ❤️

Nov 24th

Jackie allen

myim this episode was amazing however please stop talking so much while the other person is talking

Nov 7th

Beth Martin

Love, love, love this interview! I am 53 and grew up with Elvira. Will have to get her book!

Oct 30th

Carol Sykes

no miss getting double d's I had a double mysectomy due to bc & implants not dd & the implants were the worse decision. I wish I had gone flat. in pain everyday. because there is this thought implants are easy pisy bounce back.

Oct 25th

Lori C.

Fluffy...Gabe, you're awesome!!

Oct 24th

Sepideh Bakht

The bright, promising, vibrant youth of Iran, those who want their minimum human rights, the citizens of our planet earth are being killed for no good reason. Please help Iranian people. #mahsaamini #مهساامینی #be_iranian_voice #opiran

Sep 28th

Samira Hamiditehrani

#mahsaAmini #مهسا_امینی #OpIran #اعتصابات_سراسری please be our voice

Sep 28th

Samira Hamiditehrani

#mahsaamini please be our voice

Sep 28th

Grunkle Hatter

Poked my head back in and sad to say its still the Hollywood Phonebook and not her Academia Phonebook, very disappointing :(

Sep 22nd

Sahar Khalkhali


Sep 3rd


Mayim, you have helped me through so much! I love how you are genuine and so kind! Thanks so much for doing this podcast!

Aug 11th

Faranak Ghomi

hi, I've been listening to your amazing, fantastic show for a while now. I wanted to thank you for the knowlage you are bringing to us. And I wanted to ask if you are going to interview Johnny any time soon.😃🥰😍🙏💚💙🤎❤️

Jun 16th

Grunkle Hatter

handful of doctors and the rest is just hollword tabloid stuff... i keep poking my head in to see if this show has turned into a real discussion about mental illnesses but nope... just the same old hollywood story, we get it your fame makes you nonless normal then the rest of us, i figured that out when i was 6 and the woes me story is getting old, lets tackle some facts about mental illnesses!

May 15th

LaDora Baisch

Is it bad that I'm crying? Thank you for all your open and honest talk. I feel much less ashamed and much more human.

May 7th

MariaElizabeth VestaMar Mendez

Mayim and Jonathan, this podcast is what I needed in my life. thank you. thank you. thank you.

Apr 29th


mayim was being super ignorant when it came to intermittent fasting/omad and the clear evidence of the many benefits of it - you can tell that david was getting pissed off as well the way she was going about it. the way she kept laughing in a mocking way and making snide comments when she spoke to him was disappointing tbh

Apr 2nd
Reply (1)

Grunkle Hatter

I keep poking my head in and it's still 99.7% Hollywood and .3% Academia

Feb 26th

Wendy S.

Wowwwwwww, that guy really wanted to make it a point to tell you how annoying the overabundance of ad breaks was - I'm sure you're deeply wounded by the loss of that listener 😂 Ok but I agree it was a LOT. But it's not what I came to say. I came to say that I've followed and deeply appreciated Vishen's work for many years, and it's so exciting to watch him and MindValley growing! This is the first of your podcasts that I've listened to, and when I had decided I was going to listen to an episode from your podcasts, seeing Vishen instantly made me select this episode 😊

Feb 22nd
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