No matter what their circumstances, human beings have a remarkable ability to flourish or suffer. After 25 years of study, teaching, and coaching based on enduring wisdom and modern research related to wellbeing, I have found that certain themes just keep coming up. Here are some of my favorites.
It wasn't until the night before the wedding my decision was solidified. My dad called me to say he wouldn't be attending the wedding, simply, because of pride, if I am honest. When he said that, I didn't think it was supposed to hurt as much as it did. But it did. Inside I was crying. I am only human.
It's been a few weeks since we need to pay for our plastic bags in the UK and it's amazing how much of a topic it's been... literally everywhere. I don't think most people realized how far the plastic bag had made its way into our lives. I don't think I did.
What, actually, is it? What is 'happiness'? What are we talking about? Somewhat bizarrely people are very happy to give, or sell, their advice on how to be happy without ever trying to say what it is. But how can we find something if we don't know what we're looking for?
When any of my clients, friends or even I, for that matter, feel stuck in this way I always say it's time to revisit what's important to us; in other words, it's time to reconnect with our values and recalibrate what I call our Personal Positioning System or PPS.
Though a long tradition it is one that has been proved wrong so many times and perhaps represents a greater threat to our future well-being than the technologies of which it is so fearful.
As a coach I often work with loss and change and the tremendous stress that these two partners impose. I knew how to work through this with a client but I had no will to do so with myself. Instead I withdrew into a small, solitary routine where I could be heartbroken without being judged.
I'm serious. How often do you factor fun into your busy schedule? And by fun I mean pure unadulterated snorting, letting a bit of wee out, silly fun? Once a day? Once a week? Once a month? Once a year?
You can't avoid kids. Just to clarify, what I mean is you can take certain precautions to avoid having them, but you can't go through life without encountering them. As a student of the relatively new concept of 'positive psychology', I thought it'd be worthwhile trawling the research to find out how the science applies to parenting.
There's a phrase doing the rounds in the environmental movement at the moment: "there's no jobs on a dead planet." I can see the appeal. It offers a...
Some people even feel that by worrying, they are somehow protecting themselves against the feared drop coming; they have learned that most things they worry about don't come to pass, so fear that if they take their eye off the ball and stop worrying, they will allow a calamity to creep in and take them by surprise.
Do you meditate? This question seems to be all the rage in popular media, and it is rapidly becoming a point of prestige among the high earning, high performing, corporate tech crowd. I have nothing against mediation - I do it regularly. However, I still think that "do you meditate?" is not the most helpful question.
This week, I tried something I have not done before. Everyday, I made it a point to find five good things to think about at the end of the day... Finding five good things may not change the colour of your day but it could help you get on a less negative train of thought and maybe one day, we will be quicker to see silver linings.
People are constantly telling me I shouldn't work so hard, must take more breaks and more holidays... yada yada yada. But the thing is, I absolutely love what I do. So much so, that while I love travelling with work, and enjoy the odd weekend break, I actually feel a bit resentful about having to take a holiday because it takes me away from my work.
During a reading for a smart and highly educated client it was explicitly well explained why she kept failing at 'self love' with the help of exercises from self-help books. An insight that can serve us all.
These were some of the last words I said to my beautiful boyfriend on Thursday afternoon, eyes swollen and soaked with tears, as he seriously debated whether or not to get hit by a car so that he could stay with me in the UK instead of boarding his flight home to Brisbane, Australia.