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Jan 16, 2019

The Happiness Myth

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

Scrolling through Instagram, it is easy to believe that happiness is what we are all searching for, a “happiness” that usually consists of us smiling in front of commodities like money, cars or even likes on a picture. Marketing adds for new products almost always mention “happiness” as an end goal, whether we are watching an advertisement for a new soda, new holiday or a new drug. Smiling, happy people stare at us from billboards as we drive to work or walk around our neighborhood—there is no escaping them. Life is all about happiness…right? WRONG.

Jan 09, 2019

The Four Barriers to Overcoming Mental Ill-Health and How to Fix Them

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

Everyone seems to be talking about mental health these days, and what we should do about it. Many of us have personal experience, whether our own or that of a loved one, of mental distress—we are human, after all. No one said that life would always be smooth and happy.

Yet mental ill-health does not have to take over our lives. Our minds are incredibly powerful—we can change the way we think, and how we live our lives, by changing our thinking.

But how? What are some of the main barriers to overcoming mental ill-health? And how can we fix them?

Dec 31, 2018

Why Mental Health Labels are Dangerous

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

We live in a society that is constantly trying to confine people to a box, a neat category that can be described and put in place. Unfortunately, if you don’t define your own identity, the world will try define it for you.

I wrote the Perfect You to counter one of the most damaging aspects of the current mental health system when it comes to our identity: labelling.

Dec 19, 2018

The Chemical Imbalance Myth

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

Today it has become commonplace to say that some people have chemical imbalances in their brain, most notably a disruption in the proper production of dopamine for “diseases” like ADHD and serotonin for “diseases” like depression. These people, it is argued, need drugs to “cure” these chemical imbalances, hence the terms “antipsychotics” or “antidepressants”.

But are chemical imbalances real? What is the relationship between chemical imbalances and mental ill-health?

Dec 12, 2018

How to Help People With Eating Disorders

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

We all know that eating disorders can be incredibly dangerous. They have an estimated death rate of up to twelve times higher than all other causes of death combined for females between the ages of fifteen and twenty-four, while recent statistics from NEDA (the National Eating Disorders Association) reveal that ‘anorexia is the third most common chronic disease among young people, after asthma and type 1 diabetes.’

But what exactlly are eating disorders? How can we help someone with an eating disorder?

Dec 03, 2018

Is Narcissism a Disorder?

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

There are many kinds people in the world, and some of them are more difficult to relate to than others. But what happens if someone in your life comes across as a narcissist? What is at the root of this negative behavior?

Nov 19, 2018

Is Pessimism Bad for the Brain?

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

We all have those days: everything seems to go wrong, we just cannot seem to say or do the right thing and our hopes and dreams seem to be going down the drain. At times like these it is hard to see any good in ourselves, in the people around us or the world. But what does constantly deliberating on negative thoughts and feelings do to the brain? How does a pessimistic mindset affect our health?

Nov 14, 2018

How to Build Mental Toughness

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

Although many of us spend so much time focusing on our physical health, whether it is going to the gym, to a Pilates class or for a morning jog, we often forget to spend time working on our mental “fitness”. Yet the mind is the source of all our thoughts, words and actions; when our thinking is unhealthy, our lives will be unhealthy—even if we go to the gym seven times a week!

Nov 07, 2018

Let's Talk About Politics

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

Let’s talk politics. Now, before you shut down your computer and switch off your smartphone, hear me out: I don’t want to discuss my political views per se. But I do want to discuss political views, or views of any kind.

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