“For the next 15 minutes, you must not speak a word.”
This was the first instruction given by our Skills tutor on the Regent’s University Psychotherapy Foundation Course.
'Skills' sessions on the course consisted of one person acting as the therapist, and another acting as the client. For 15 minutes, the ‘client’ could speak about anything — just like in a real therapy session — but in the first few weeks, the 'therapists' were not allowed to speak a word.
Nothing. Not even an 'mmhmm' or a nod of understanding.
As a notoriously chatty extrovert who loves a cheeky bit…
Admit it — as soon as the story about Iceland’s successful trial of the 4 day working week was announced, your heart felt a flicker of hope. “At last! Now I’ll be able to get more sleep/learn how to kickbox/spend more time with my kids with all that extra free time!”
I also felt the same flutter when I read about the trial, and started to already plan out how my week might look if larger organizations were to adopt a shorter working week.
But something didn’t sit right. Even if we did move to a shorter working week, it’s…
A “stack” in the technology world is a collection of tools, programming languages, and frameworks that developers use to create an app or service. These technologies work together for a specific purpose, and the “stack” is an important concept for keeping things consistent across the board.
Most likely you already have a “productivity stack.” That is to say, you have a collection of tools (both digital and analog) that you use to organize your day to day life.
You probably use a calendar app, email app, a to-do list, work tools, and document management. …
There is a cognitive dissonance that comes with working from home. On the one hand: no commute. Chats with my partner over coffee in the kitchen. Running on my lunch break. Candles. (Seriously though, can we make office candles a thing when we return?)
BUT. I miss connection. Ideas. Gossip. Sparks. Collaboration. Friction. Disagreements. Breakthroughs. The magic of creative thinking bouncing around a room.
The cognitive dissonance comes with knowing that while I enjoy the peace of remote working and don’t want to give it up, I am also aware it is sapping me of something.
Even though work with…
Like many people interested in self-improvement, I stumbled upon Hal Elrod’s Miracle Morning technique a few years ago and thought — “huh, that seems doable!” The seven easy steps that Elrod lists out — writing, meditating, affirmations, and so forth can be done even just a minute at a time, and all seem like they will set you up for a great day.
The only real problem with the technique is the acronym. It’s so…boring. Uninspiring. It doesn’t even really make sense as a word.
The acronym that Elrod uses to remember the seven morning steps is SAVERS.
I don’t love numbers. I used to be a maths whiz at school, but as I’ve gotten older, my heart has turned to more creative interests such as languages, writing and psychology. Finance is not a big passion of mine.
What I do like though is technology. And productivity hacks. And maybe most of all, clothes shopping. Unfortunately, the last one requires me to be careful with my money. But through leveraging my interest in the first two areas, I’ve stumbled upon an excellent discovery:
There are tons of really good apps out there that mean I don’t need to…
There is a buzz in my brain. A hum. Like, when you go to a hotel room that has a kitchenette in it, and the low sound of the refrigerator keeps you up all night until your boyfriend sits bolt upright in bed and maniacally rips the plug out the wall? You know, like that.
The hum is restless anxiety of ‘needing to get stuff done’. It’s similar to that nagging sensation when you feel like you forgot something, but you’re not sure exactly what.
When I listen closely and intently, the hum starts to have a needling voice that…
People love the underdog. I mean, look at Harry Potter. The kid had a tragic upbringing, entered school with zero experience of wizarding, and made a total idiot out of himself constantly during his first year at Hogwarts. But we all know he smashed it in the end, and we loved him for it (and look, if this is a spoiler for you, deal with it.)
The problem is, the underdog doesn’t always win. …
Please tell me I’m not the only one that does this:
It’s mid-afternoon. I am hungry. I go into the cupboard. I am looking for a cheeky little snacklet that will give me some pep to get through the next 4 hours.
There is nothing. I am sad.
One hour later, my partner comes into the study where I’m working and is eating a chocolate Tunnock’s teacake (image above, if you’re not familiar with this snack. It is a gloriously squishy, chocolate-covered marshmallow joy bomb).
“Where did you get that?!” I demand, enviously.
“They’re in the cupboard. On the second…
Back in 2019, when the world was normal, I did a 30 day stint without booze. I went back to drinking for a while, but as of writing this article, I have one year of sobriety under my belt.
Things I have done since cutting out alcohol (either in that first 30 day period, or since giving up long term):