Cover image of School of Psych | Insightful interviews and stories about psychology, culture, and relationships.

School of Psych | Insightful interviews and stories about psychology, culture, and relationships.

Twice monthly, psychologist and therapist Jared DeFife, Ph.D. presents insightful interviews and stories about psychology, culture, and relationships from amazing experts with great stories to tell and meaningful wisdom to share. The School of Psych podcast is less about giving "5 simple tips for a great marriage" and more about people sharing deep and heartfelt stories like "what I learned about the psychology of fear from dangling off the ledge of 1,000 ft tall building" or "how I went from a reluctant bride to counseling couples as New York's 'Wedding Doctor'", and "how my journey to learn about unrequited love and romantic obsession began after becoming obsessed with someone who didn't love me back". Along the way, we'll learn about love, life, loss, fear, anger, joy, creativity, and happiness. Authors, sociologists, psychologists, journalists, therapists, artists, and more will be asked to dig deep into their own personal passions, triumphs, heartbreaks, failures, and eureka moments to help us learn more about who we are, what we think, and how we relate. Show notes and more can be found over at http://www.schoolofpsych.com

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SoP 2 | Why we love being scared: Psychology and the science of fear w/ Margee Kerr, PhD

For Margee Kerr, PhD, dangling from the ledge of a 1,000 ft. tall tower with nothing but a harness, a carabiner, and an odd set of safety instructions is just another day in the life. Whether it’s hanging out in haunted prisons, trekking the globe to find the world’s tallest and fastest rollercoasters, or contemplating life and death in Japan’s Suicide Forest, Margee investigates the effects of fear on our minds, bodies, and brains. Find out why one Washington Post reporter called Margee’s book Scream: Chilling Adventures in the Science of Fear “the creepiest book I read this year”.Margee isn’t content just studying the science and psychology of fear, she wants to experience it herself. And on today’s episode, she shares some of her adventures and experiences and what she learned along the way about what scares us and why.Listen to find out about:-How roller coasters, thrill rides, and haunted houses create effective physical thrills and jolts by shaking up your body and your brain.-What makes a place "haunted" and why are old prisons, hospitals, and institutions so creepy?-Is infrasound giving you the chills without you knowing about it?-Can a thrilling experience help us overcome worry and anxious rumination?-What’s the scariest experience of them all?Find out on today’s episode of the School of Psych! For more frightfully good times, subscribe to the podcast and check us out over at SchoolofPsych.com


2 Jan 2016

Rank #1

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SoP 7 | BDSM, Spanking, and Shakespeare w/ Jillian Keenan

Jillian Keenan is obsessed with Shakespeare…and spanking. Her new book Sex with Shakespeare is a deeply intelligent, exciting, and moving memoir about her own search for love and sexual identity as well as a provocative re-examination of sexuality throughout the Shakespeare canon. Jillian is a freelance journalist based in New York. As a foreign correspondent, she’s reported from Somalia, Niger, Khazakstan, Burundi, Bosnia, and more. Her reporting has appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, Slate, The Atlantic, Scientific American and many other top media outlets. On today’s episode, Jillian shares her experiences and struggles with growing up kinky, how a classic children’s book became her surprising first ‘startle’, her love of language, and her passionate plea to the mental health community to understand the number one most damaging thing they’ve gotten wrong about kink and spanking all along. As always, you can find us by heading over to SchoolofPsych.com and be sure to follow us on Facebook (facebook.com/schoolofpsych) and Twitter (@schoolofpsych). Jillian's website: jilliannyc.comSex with Shakespeare


15 Mar 2016

Rank #2

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SoP 6 | Get Me Out of Here! w/ Colleen Mullen, PsyD, LMFT

Dr. Colleen Mullen knows that breaking free from a bad situation isn’t always smooth sailing. Scapegoated and physically abused in her childhood home, she had to find her own ways of solace and escape until striking out on her own at age 17. Find out how Colleen reached escape velocity with the help of a therapist and the inspiration of her father…a man who struggled with the disabling strictures of childhood polio. Colleen reached escape velocity to come to peace with her past and provide counseling, motivation, and inspiration for those struggling with addictions, relationship conflicts, trauma, and anxiety. She has a doctorate in marriage and family therapy and started the Coaching Through Chaos practice in San Diego, California. Her work has been featured on PsychCentral.com and Fortune.com and she’s also host of the Coaching Through Chaos podcast featuring interviews with experts in health and well-being to help inspire, motivate, and empower you to greater personal success. Colleen and I actually traded podcast interviews this week, so make sure to go over and check out the Coaching Through Chaos podcast this week at coachingthroughchaos.com as Colleen interviews me about my own personal and professional journey helping deep feelers navigate powerful emotions and complicated romantic relationships. As always, you can find us by heading over to SchoolofPsych.com and be sure to follow us on Facebook (facebook.com/schoolofpsych) and Twitter (@schoolofpsych).


1 Mar 2016

Rank #3

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SoP 5 | The Superhero Therapist w/ Janina Scarlet, PhD

Dr. Janina Scarlet may not be faster than a speeding bullet or able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, but she knows a thing or two about superheroes. Instead of x-ray vision or super speed, her superpowers include compassion, courage, and empathy.  Author of the upcoming book ‘Superhero Therapy’, due out in late 2016, Janina has worked with active duty military service members and civilians by using the power of stories, comics, and pop culture to help people navigate the stresses and strains of post-traumatic stress disorder and chronic pain conditions. She’s been interviewed by the HuffPost Live, spoken regularly at a number of comic/fantasy/sci-fi conventions, and contributed chapters to the Sterling Publishing PsychGeeks book series including The Walking Dead Psychology, Star Wars Psychology, Game of Thrones Psychology, and Star Trek Psychology. She describes herself as a psychologist, a scientist, an animal lover, and a full-time geek with a mission to “take over the world with geek culture and compassion”. You can find her on twitter @Shadowquill or visit her website: www.superhero-therapy.com But all great superheroes have fantastic origin stories, right? Well, Janina is no exception. And like so many other incredible superhero stories, this one starts with a terrible radioactive accident… Whether you love the X-Men, you long to enlist with the Guardians of the Galaxy, or even if you just can’t figure out what’s a Doctor Who, you can be our hero by leaving us an honest rating and review on iTunes. For more amazing adventures, remember to subscribe to the podcast and visit us at http://schoolofpsych.com or follow us on twitter @SchoolofPsych.


16 Feb 2016

Rank #4

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SoP 4 | Why am I STILL Single?!: A causal quagmire w/ author Sara Eckel

Sara Eckel was a self-improvement guinea pig. As a freelance writer for women’s magazines and a single woman in her 30s, she talked to psychologists, coaches, yoga teachers, and even took an acting class in a quest to figure out why she was still single and what to do about it. At age 39, without a serious boyfriend in eight years, one man actually looked at her and said: “What’s wrong with you?” The answer to that question is the basis of her first book, “It’s Not You: 27 (Wrong) Reasons You’re Single” based on her hit essay for the New York Times Modern Love column. Sara Eckel is a full-time freelance writer and personal coach. She’s been a nationally syndicated columnist and her work has appeared in publications like The Washington Post, Salon, Women’s Health, Time Out New York, Cosmopolitan, Forbes, The BBC, The Village Voice, The Boston Globe, and The New York Times. Currently partnered? No worries, this episode is still for you. It’s not an episode about what it’s like being single and what’s wrong with you if you aren’t partnered and how to go about meeting someone. It’s about how all of us think about being single, and about some of the awful things we sometimes say to singles, especially single women in their 30s and beyond. Most importantly, this episode about compassion. Compassion for yourself and compassion for others and what happens when it’s not there. Sara’s been deeply influenced by her meditation practices and learning about Buddhist teachings. At the heart of this episode is a quagmire…about valuing couples while also embracing singlehood and accepting ourselves as we are even when we might want something more. Make sure to subscribe to the podcast to have new episodes sent directly to your listening device and go visit us our website over at SchoolofPsych.com for shownotes and more.


1 Feb 2016

Rank #5