The Importance of Sleep for Good Mental Health

Ministry of Health Vanuatu May 2019 Mental Health Newsletter The Importance of Sleep for Good Mental Health Sleep difficulties are a feature of nearly every mental health difficulty, including depression, anxiety, trauma, substance use issues, bipolar disorder and psychosis or schizophrenia. Take Depression for example. Up to 90% of individuals with Depression have sleep difficulties, […]

What is Depression and How Can We Manage It?

Ministry of Health Vanuatu April 2019 Mental Health Newsletter What is Depression? Approximately 1-in-5 people will experience Depression at some stage of their lives. It is normal for people to experience short periods of sadness. Although some people may say that they are depressed if they feel sad at times, Depression, formally known as Major Depressive […]

Why Bother Overcoming Fears?

Last weekend I managed to successfully complete my PADI Open Water SCUBA Diver Course: PADI Temporary Card Open Water Diver Name: Damon K. Ashworth Diver No.: 1902AA8575 Cert Date: 16-Feb-2019 Instructor Number: 305944 Store/Resort Name:Big Blue Store Number:36279 This person has satisfactorily met the standards for this certification level as set forth by PADI. It […]

The Four Ultimate Concerns in Life

I’ve been afraid to say this for a while because of how it will be perceived, but my favourite book of all time is actually a textbook. Now before you think that makes me someone that you would never want to speak to, I’ll ask if you have ever read anything by Irvin Yalom, American […]

Parenting is Tough, but Science Suggests Clear Strategies that Help You to Raise Emotionally Healthy Children

In 2018, the American Psychiatric Association identified what they considered to be the three major goals of parenting: “1. Ensuring children’s health and safety 2. Preparing children for life as productive adults, and 3. Transmitting cultural values” Many environmental and biological factors influence a parent’s and a child’s capacity to reach these ambitious goals. However, […]

What Makes Some Things Fade Fast, and Others Stand the Test of Time?

After writing this blog for just over three years now, I find it quite interesting to see what types of posts are immediately successful, and which articles continue to be successful over a long period of time. The most popular blog post that I have written since 2015 is titled ‘How Have Intimate Relationships Changed […]

It’s Okay to Still Fall into Life Traps… We All Do!

Life-traps are self-defeating ways of perceiving, feeling about and interacting with oneself, others and the world. If you are wanting to get a sense of what your life-traps may be, the book ‘Reinventing your life’ by Jeffrey Young is an excellent place to start, as it goes into 11 different ones. If you want a more […]

Is Your Screen Time Eating Up Your Free Time?

How Did We Get Here? In the classic Sociology book ‘Bowling Alone’, Robert Putnam makes the compelling argument that social capital (reciprocal connections among people) has been in a steady decline ever since its peak in 1964. By the year 2000, the average American was 58 percent less likely to attend a club meeting than […]

Shame and Guilt: Which One is Helpful, and How Can We Effectively Manage These Difficult Emotions?

What are shame and guilt? In the fascinating and comprehensive book ‘Shame and Guilt’ by June Tangney and Ronda Dearing, they describe shame and guilt as universal human emotions that are functionally important at both an individual and a relationship level. Features shared by shame and guilt (Tangney & Dearing, 2002): Shame and guilt are both […]

Money and Happiness: How to spend for optimal benefits

Not all the best things in life are free I was on holidays in Queenstown, New Zealand earlier this year, and was amazed at how beautiful the scenery was. I was also amazed by how many experiences were on offer for people visiting or living there… On my first day in Queenstown, I walked into […]