I lost sight of myself, Sam Baker

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Journalist and author Sam Baker noticed an escalation in her anxiety, crashes in self-confidence, and depression in her 40s. “I felt like I had lost sight of myself.” When she was researching her book, The Shift, she realised those feelings weren’t uncommon in women – and they weren’t being discussed. Midway through HRT, she was […]

Work hard to make good memories, Meik Wiking

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Meik Wiking, CEO of The Happiness Institute, explores what makes us happy. “It’s about having a sense of connection, a sense of purpose, and exploring positive emotions on a daily basis,” he says. During the pandemic, our sense of connection has suffered, he says, which impacts our daily mood, overall life satisfaction and the meaning […]

Looking for silver linings, Susanna Newsonen

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Susanna Newsonen is a life coach – the Happyologist. Although Susanna says she was originally a natural pessimist, she has studied positive psychology and tries to look for happiness. Susanna believes that we can also learn to be more happy – mindfulness and gratitude can help. Being happy doesn’t mean ignoring reality or negative emotions, […]

Forgiveness brings us peace, Swati Dlamini

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Swati Dlamini, granddaughter of Nelson and Winnie Mandela, vowed to carry her grandparents’ work and values with her through her life. “One of the great lessons I learned from my grandfather was one of forgiveness. Forgiveness is for me to have peace, and not being imprisoned by what others have done.” During the pandemic, she […]

Lessons from an urban monk, Pandit Dasa

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Pandit Dasa, the child of Indian immigrants, grew up in America. He joined a monastery in 1999, hoping to find clarity and purpose in a simpler life. He spent 15 years living as a monk in New York, before deciding he wanted to leave the monastic order to take his teachings into the corporate world […]

Loving the skin you’re in, Eryca Freemantle

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As a child, Eryca Freemantle was bullied at school for being different, and remembers the constant feeling of heaviness and sadness. Home was her safe space. But when a life-changing accident left her with serious facial scarring from burns, those memories of childhood bullying came back. After suffering a breakdown, having suicidal thoughts and finally […]

The solace of music, Charles Hazlewood

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Conductor Charles Hazlewood created the Paraorchestra for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics, as a way to enable virtuoso disabled magicians to share their musical gifts. But music has played a greater role than that in Charles’ life: it has helped through the recovery from deep-buried sexual abuse when he was young. “The trauma that […]

Respectful interventions at work

Struggle & success

Kindness at work also means kindness to ourselves right now, says wellbeing consultant Catrin Donnelly. She says we don’t do enough to ask our colleagues how they’re doing, if we think they are working too hard, or not taking enough breaks, or look like they could be struggling. “Have a proper conversation. Look […]

Changing minds in the workplace, Sir Ian Cheshire

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Leading businessman Sir Ian Cheshire says the pandemic has completely changed the background to talking about mental health at work. He became interested in the issues because of family experiences and has since worked with charities to promote good practices in the office. The fact that so many of us are working from home poses […]

Learning to adapt

Struggle & success

Rachel Kelly Most of us prefer to follow a more predictable path and don’t like being rattled by unforeseen events. And, unfortunately, life feels especially unpredictable at the moment. The world is going through rapid and unprecedented change. We might in the past have relied on certain pillars of stability, be they religious, political or […]

Teaching kids to be kind to their minds

Struggle & success

Just because you’re young, doesn’t mean you don’t have worries, emotional health practitioner Jo Morton-Brown tells children. Using a collection of teddies to represent worries, Jo explains how talking about worries can help children manage them. She tells children how to be kind to their minds, and open themselves up to new ideas […]

Sticker on the mirror

Struggle & success

Imagine the wonderful feeling of being completely happy in the skin you’ve been given. Hopefully, you feel that already? Therapist and counsellor Cat Williams says that the difficulty we have praising ourselves might also be because we don’t accept praise well from other people. She says: “We might think we are just being […]