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Alternate nostril breathing

For most of us, one nostril is more open than the other at any given time and this nostril ‘dominance’ switches periodically during the day under the influence of your autonomic nervous system (Eccles, 2000). The practice of alternate nostril breathing, or #nadishodan, in Yoga is designed to work with this to be “…calming for the nervous system and balancing for the mind.” There’s some science to back this up. More on my blog link in bio. Known as the nasal cycle, sympathetic nerves constrict blood vessels in the nose to open and decongest one nostril (or both in times of stress), and, conversely, parasympathetic activity will dilate and increase secretion/congestion narrowing the other nostril (Kahana-Zweig et al., 2016). The...

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Direct and Indirect psychological impacts of shark bite events

Exciting news here this morning. My first academic publication, 'Direct and Indirect Psychological Impacts of Shark Bite Events' is now live in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry. You can read the article at  The study surveyed members of a shark-related peer-support group and found that almost one-third of respondents developed PTSD symptoms post-event and that those with a negative media experience were almost twelve times more likely to develop PTSD symptoms.  Importantly, PTSD symptoms were experienced by witnesses, first responders, and family/friends, as well as direct survivors. In addition, those without a partner or having two or fewer friends to rely on were also more likely to develop PTSD symptoms. You can read more about Bite Club and Beyond the Bite at and...

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A year without alcohol

Last weekend marked 12 months since I stopped drinking alcohol. For many of you, this won't be particularly surprising or interesting. And it's not, in the broader scheme of things. However, for others that know me well and understand the Australian culture I live and grew up in, you might understand the significance. It's a big lifestyle change, and I've learnt a great deal about myself in the process.

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