Self-Motivation
David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Actor
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Management
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
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A Day in the Life of a Drone Operator

Big Think: What’s it like to command a drone in Iraq from the US?

P.W. Singer: These commanders of these drone squadrons described that it’s actually more difficult than commanding a traditional man squadron because of the distancing, but also there’s the challenge of being at war but also being physically at home.  You know, one of them described to me that you would go in, you drive your Toyota Corolla into work, you get into the trailer, and you basically start carrying out a mission, and for 12 hours you’re taking out targets, you’re hitting enemy combatants.  And then, at the end of the day, you leave the trailer and you enter back into America and you get back in your Toyota Corolla and you drive home.  And 20 minutes later, you’re talking to your kid about their homework at the dinner table. 

And the result is that the psychological disconnects have proven very challenging and you actually have higher PTSD rates among the drone pilots than you do among many units that are serving in places like Iraq.  And so, the officers in charge are trying to figure out all sorts of different ways, you know, how did they drive that home, how did they watch out for their men and women who are fighting from afar.  They’re doing things like, for example, they have to wear flight suits, even though they’re not in the plane, they wear the suit as if they are.  All sorts of outside communication is banned while you’re on mission.  You may be sitting 20 miles away from your wife, but no cellphone calls, for example.  And so they’re constantly saying, you know what, you may be physically in Nevada, but we’re in Iraq, keep that in mind and lives are at stake here.

The author explains the psychology of a drone operator in Nevada who spends his nights at home with his family and his days eliminating enemy targets in Iraq.

Live on Tuesday | Personal finance in the COVID-19 era

Sallie Krawcheck and Bob Kulhan will be talking money, jobs, and how the pandemic will disproportionally affect women's finances.

Women who go to church have more kids—and more help

Want help raising your kids? Spend more time at church, says new study.

Pixabay
Culture & Religion
  • Religious people tend to have more children than secular people, but why remains unknown.
  • A new study suggests that the social circles provided by regular church going make raising kids easier.
  • Conversely, having a large secular social group made women less likely to have children.
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Bubonic plague case reported in China

Health officials in China reported that a man was infected with bubonic plague, the infectious disease that caused the Black Death.

(Photo by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Getty Images)
Coronavirus
  • The case was reported in the city of Bayannur, which has issued a level-three plague prevention warning.
  • Modern antibiotics can effectively treat bubonic plague, which spreads mainly by fleas.
  • Chinese health officials are also monitoring a newly discovered type of swine flu that has the potential to develop into a pandemic virus.
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Masturbation boosts your immune system, helping you fight off infection and illness

Can an orgasm a day really keep the doctor away?

Image by Yurchanka Siarhei on Shutterstock
Sex & Relationships
  • Achieving orgasm through masturbation provides a rush of feel-good hormones (such as dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin) and can re-balance our levels of cortisol (a stress-inducing hormone). This helps our immune system function at a higher level.
  • The surge in "feel-good" hormones also promotes a more relaxed and calm state of being, making it easier to achieve restful sleep, which is a critical part in maintaining a high-functioning immune system.
  • Just as bad habits can slow your immune system, positive habits (such as a healthy sleep schedule and active sex life) can help boost your immune system which can prevent you from becoming sick.
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Education vs. learning: How semantics can trigger a mind shift

The word "learning" opens up space for more people, places, and ideas.

Future of Learning
  • The terms 'education' and 'learning' are often used interchangeably, but there is a cultural connotation to the former that can be limiting. Education naturally links to schooling, which is only one form of learning.
  • Gregg Behr, founder and co-chair of Remake Learning, believes that this small word shift opens up the possibilities in terms of how and where learning can happen. It also becomes a more inclusive practice, welcoming in a larger, more diverse group of thinkers.
  • Post-COVID, the way we think about what learning looks like will inevitably change, so it's crucial to adjust and begin building the necessary support systems today.
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