• Let’s find an anxiety charity to support My book first, we make the beast beautiful is selling better than I thought. Which makes me very… relieved. And fulfilled. Off the back of this interest and the wonderful deep conversations it’s spawning, I’m being asked to speak at a number of corporate events, and I’ll also be organising a speaking tour shortly.  I want more
  • Dearest Everyone, I have to back off a bit… Writing and releasing first, we make the beast beautiful has been the most enriching, real experiences of my life. Not one of. The most. I set out to have a better conversation about anxiety and to feel less lonely myself. The dialogue the book has created has delivered this in spades. It’s come from the media, readers who’ve more
  • Five recipes that have helped my anxiety At the back of my new book, first, we make the beast beautiful, I promised to share on my site a few of my favourite meals and recipes that have helped my anxiety. This is that list. (Most of these recipes feature in I Quit Sugar: Simplicious.) As I explain in the beast, it’s best to eat more
  • Treatments that have helped my anxiety and where to find them At the back of my new book, first, we make the beast beautiful, I promised to share on my site a list of treatments that have helped my anxiety and where to find them. This is that list. Please bear in mind these are my own personal techniques and chosen brands. I’ve not been endorsed in more
  • Anxiety fix: have a shower We all need to know this – the anxious bit of the brain is a mono-tasker. It’s a bit like a fusty, gnarly old uncle at the end of the table who causes trouble…until he’s preoccupied by the footy on the telly. So, simply put, we can feasibly dampen the anxious brain by accessing other more
  • Science says this diet heals anxiety (and it looks familiar) A few weeks back I wrote about how quitting sugar helps fight anxiety. Now, a new study shows that another well-known diet can fight depression. The study was conducted by Deakin University here in Australia. It showed that after 12 weeks of what is essentially Mediterranean-style eating (see the details below), one third of folk reported more
  • A (boring) list of all the references in “first, we make the beast beautiful” At the back of first, we make the beast beautiful I promise to include references and links for all the science and studies I draw on in the researching of the book in a neat and tidy post. This is she. I didn’t want to include them as footnotes in the book proper. They’re not more
  • A polite note on how to write about mental illness I’ve got to hand it to the DailyMail.com. As I wrote my new book first, we make the beast beautiful, there was one line amid the 90,000 words I penned, that I just knew the site would hunt down, isolate, recast out of context and sensationalise to their heart’s content. It involved a build-up of more
  • Does quitting sugar help heal anxiety? The short answer is yes, without a doubt. The longer one requires me to rant. Let’s start with my experience, then flesh out from there. Me, when I got unwell with Hashimotos seven years ago, I was also suffering one of my most tumultuous bouts of anxiety. The two are very interrelated. I’ll explore this in more
  • The 9 best books that help heal anxiety I read widely and wonderfully while researching first, we make the beast beautiful, my book about my anxious journey. Actually, I’ve researched the topic for decades now and read many a fretty memoir, some more insightful and enriching than others. Here’s my pick of the bunch with short reviews. Because I did promise I’d provide more
  • Enough with the (hashtag) unicorns and rainbows! I was on a dating site recently. A guy who looked like Jesus (should Jesus exist today as a Swedish supermodel with a man-bun and a lot of photos of himself on jet skis)  flagged in his profile that he would flick left on anyone with a #blessed hashtag on their Instagram feed. Now, I more
  • There’s an octopus on the cover of my book because… …well, octopuses, as a motif, swam into my life during the process of writing first, we make the beast beautiful. From all kinds of angles. You see, my book is about anxiety. Anxiety is complex. So are octopuses (and yes, it’s “octopuses”, not “octopi”, the latter utilising a Roman suffix, which you can’t do on more
  • Interrupt anxiety with gratitude I caught up with Danielle LaPorte the other day. I wanted to ask her a bit about anxiety. She gets it. She writes about it. I’ve followed her White Hot Truths for a while. And her career in the self-help-of-the-brutal-variety realm. (Note: Danielle tours Australia next month, with special guest Clare Bowditch. Details, and a ticket giveaway, below). A more
  • Your favourite songs to lull anxiety A few weeks ago I shared a post about songs that can lull anxiety. And why. To refresh, this is the top ten list as compiled by a bunch of boffins from the British Academy of Sound Therapy: 1. Weightless 2. Electra (Airstream) 3. Mellomaniac (DJ Shah – Chill Out Mix) 4. Watermark (Enya) 5. Strawberry more
  • Why songs heal anxiety (especially these ones) Music can very much help with my anxiety. It lulls, it distracts, it provides a lofty, expansive perspective from which I’m able to “see” my anxiety and ride it out. Sound therapists at the British Academy of Sound Therapy looked into why this may be so and created the most scientifically relaxing song possible. Listen to more
  • How to find your place Are you a young person wondering what the hell you’re meant to be doing? Trying to find your place? Are you a parent with a beloved young person in your life who is struggling with their place? My suggestion: read famous creatives’ graduation speeches. They are truly inspiring frothings in which said famous creative confesses more
  • The 15 types who need to be eating gelatin Let me introduce to you: Gelatin. My new obsession and wonder weapon for gut health. In fact I believe in the power of gelatin so much I’ve produced my own. I’ve banged on about just how good this stuff is for you before. If you ask me, everyone can benefit from a little Gut Lovin’ – more
  • This is what my writing desk looks like (not pretty!) I work in chaos. Plus, I’m very visual and I need to see ALL my bits of notes and ideas and outlines in one bird’s-eye grasp. So I scatter them around me at my desk, or the floor, or (as is often the case) the cafe bench where I’ve set up shop for the morning. more
  • How to love mindfully Oh I do love a bit of Thich Nhat Hanh. I recently discovered that the Vietnamese monk who brought us the mindful concept of “washing the dishes, to wash the dishes” has written about mindful love in his book “How to Love”. It’s a beautiful read. It hits nails on relationship heads. But I was more
  • There’s a good scientific reason you’re neurotic Have you caught the science news? Psychologists have advanced a new theory linking neurotic unhappiness and creativity in the brain, giving over-worrying an evolutionary purpose. Bingo! Normal worry, of course, has always had an evolutionary purpose. In the face of danger, freaking out helps us fight or flight. But neuroticism – freaking out when there more
  • Solastalgia, a new type of unease My interest in words that sum up melancholia or human yearning (in a way that standard English just can’t) continues. A Twitter friend (Dr Daz) sent me this read about “solastalgia”, a word invented by (retired) Murdoch University professor of sustainability and environmental philosopher Glenn Albrecht. Solastalgia describes “the homesickness you have when you are still more
  • The best advice to creatives ever: you have to go through a volume of work When I lived in Byron (writing my first book) I used to drive to my friend Annie’s house in the hills for dinner on Sundays. I timed it to listen to Ira Glass on This American Life. I’d time it so I could pull over in the really mind-expanding, precipace-thinking bits. Not listened to one more
  • Anxiety is love’s greatest killer Anais Nin wrote this in her diary, between 1947-1955 (it was later published in Volume 5 of her diaries)…”Anxiety is love’s greatest killer”. The next bit of the quote: “It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle more
  • Be totally glad for red men I read a quote from someone from a book about a book about to come out, somewhere. Said quote touched on the idea of using the things that so irritatingly slow us down to…slow down. And to be grateful for the prompt. The red man at the pedestrian crossing. A red traffic light. A queue more
  • Are you future-anxious or a past-fretter? I have a theory. There are two types of people in this world: those whose anxiety is primarily based around fretting about what has been, and those who worry about what’s yet to come. The former suffer from regrets, remorse and obsess over what they should have done. They hang on and find it hard more
  • Anxiety in your bones today? Here’s the practical fix I feel compelled to share when I’m anxious. Or, more to the point, I feel compelled to share when I find a pithy solution that might just help others orbiting the same tetchy vibe in the Zeitgeist. And even more to the point, I know that when I do share (from on tetchy high) so more
  • Anxiety: fight it or ride with it? Every few months or so I get stuck. I get wobbly or, as was the case this time, I get so thoroughly sick of myself I can’t move forward without offloading some of the spinning thoughts somewhere. In the absence of a pillow talk companion, and to save my friends the tedium of discussing my more
  • Treat your car as a sanctuary I have a trick I use to deal with my anxiety that you might like to know about. But first, some clarification. My brand of anxiety comes with the tagline: The Great Lurch Forward. My nervousness is very much tied to my being in a permanent state of forward flight. Not fright. Just the flight more
  • my summer vegetable anti-anxiety soup I was born anxious. I’ve fretted for as long as I remember. I worried for one and all. Some days it cripples me and I have to disappear for a while. Others, I am able to accept it as part of my character. These days, though, I manage it better. I know what works. What more
  • don’t work nervously I am a little obsessed by the work habits of writers. And I love Henry Miller. And I’m very grateful for these little work mantras Miller wrote for himself. Mostly because it’s a reminder that everyone struggles to find the right mood, pace and approach to work, and the right way to balance work with more
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