Focussing: 6 steps to mental health with nothing but your good self required

I know I’m relaxed when I realise I’m cutting a cherry tomato into no less than 6 pieces. What about you – what are the tell tale signs of what’s going on inside? Staying in touch with our ever-changing selves is key to mental health. You may already be on top of this. If not.. Continue reading “Focussing: 6 steps to mental health with nothing but your good self required”

Love is love: on friendship

Love is love – familial, romantic, fleeting or friendship. And love can be a bugger.

Across ten years of listening to clients, I’ve heard many speak at length about their friendships. One of the first things I ask suicidal clients is “are there are any friends in your orbit?”. This is because friendships are pivotal to our sense of community and belonging in the world. Put another way, ‘friendship is vital to human wellbeing because this form of human love gets under our skin quite as much as any other’ (Vernon 2012). Continue reading “Love is love: on friendship”

If you are in a position of power – that is, any kind of leader – therapy may well be a great idea

You may not be prime minister, but having power at all is a tricky business. I know that therapy and supervsion certainly support me to act with integrity and rigour given that I have some power from my role alone. Although the following article relates to having vast power within politics, I suspect we could all learn from this: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/jun/12/prime-minister-therapy

Today

If you need permission to do or to be just as you are – or less – today, here’s your ticket. I love this poem – ‘Today’ by Jean Little. 

TODAY I will not live up to my potential.
TODAY I will not relate well to my peer group.
TODAY I will not contribute in class.
I will not volunteer one thing.

TODAY I will not strive to do better.
TODAY I will not achieve or adjust or grow enriched
or get involved.
I will not put up my hand even if the teacher is wrong

and I can prove it.

TODAY I might eat the eraser off my pencil.
I’ll look at the clouds.
I’ll be late.
I don’t think I’ll wash.

I NEED A REST.

O do not love too long

This morning I flicked open ‘The Collected Poems of W.B. Yeats’ – a gift from some lovely friends – and stumbled upon this beauty. It speaks to me and I hope it will you too.

Sweetheart, do not love too long:
I loved long and long,
And grew to be out of fashion
Like an old song.

All through the years of our youth
Neither could have known
Their own thought from the other’s,
We were so much at one.

But O, in a minute she changed – 
O do not love too long,
Or you will grow out of fashion
Like an old song.