1. Is self-help simply magical thinking?
If you're looking to improve some part of your life by scouring the self-help section of your local bookstore, you might want to think twice about how much the psychology in those pages will actually help you achieve your aspirations. In his essay, Dr. Rami Gabriel takes a closer look at the self-help industry by attempting to use self-help psychology to improve his tennis skills. (aeon)
2. There's a new way to care for premature babies, and it's inspired by kangaroos.
Kangaroos Mother Care is a new treatment strategy where mothers act as human incubators for babies born before their due date. This constant skin-to-skin contact is cheaper (and could even be more effective) than putting babies in a high-tech neonatal unit. (digg)
3. This beauty product proves that sometimes simple really is better.
Follow the illusive Aztec Secret—a clay powder from Death Valley that transforms into a face mask when mixed with water—from its humble beginnings in health food stores to its current place as an Amazon #1 seller that’s amassed over 10,000 glowing customer reviews. (Racked)
4. An Antarctic ice shelf has grown 17 miles in the last 2 months.
Scientists are concerned that the fourth-largest ice shelf in Antarctica might be headed for a full break in the next few months. Once it does break, it will result in one of the largest icebergs ever. The structural implications are massive, as well. (NYT)
5. Want to make babies laugh on demand? Now you can, with this Imogen Heap song designed to do just that.
Using babies and their parents as test subjects, scientists methodically optimized a beat, melody, lyrics, vocals, and sounds to create a song designed to make babies giggle. We're curious about the song, but really just want to see a room full of giggling babies because, let's be real, how much joy would that bring? (Science of Us)
6. Can we really train our brains?
According to one writer's experience, the answer is yes, just not in the way we might think. Rather than trying to strengthen particular areas of the brain, she found that trying to engage different parts of the brain was key. Essentially, you've had the right tools all along—you just need to learn how to properly use them! (The Guardian)
7. Craft chocolate is big and getting bigger.
Bean to bar chocolates are big business theses days. The market for specialty organic bars is growing, with consumers willing to spend more than $10 on a single bar. (Bloomberg)