• Dr Hugh Willbourn

#20 True Hope Podcast


Early last month, Simon Brazier interviewed me on his podcast at True Hope Canada. I have posted the link below.

Our talk included simple ways to keep your spirits up, ways of dealing with feeling isolated or depressed, and how to have conversations with people on the other side of the great Covid divide.

The smallest changes can make a remarkable difference. I talked about how when I find myself slouching, I make myself sit upright, and I talked about how to change unhelpful habits. It is not so useful to say, "Don't think of problems" because your mind will go hunting for them. Instead we can cultivate the habit of wondering how things can get better. Little by little the new habit can drive out the old. In other words, instead of saying, "Don't think of elephants," try saying, "Do think about giraffes."

Even if we are very ambitious, or very frustrated, it is strangely more powerful and effective in the long-term to make the smallest possible step in the right direction rather than the largest we can imagine. Tomorrow, you can take another step.

If you find yourself talking with someone you disagree with about Covid, or lockdowns or masks or any other hot topic my top tip is just tell a story. It doesn't matter so much what it is about and best to avoid saying "and the moral is ..." Just tell a story and leave it at that. Stories bring us together in a deep and strange way. Later on you may find some small pieces of agreement.


If you would like to listen, you can find the whole podcast here.


I hope that many people are feeling better now that the lockdowns are coming to an end (unless you live in France) but we will all need plenty of optimism as we contemplate the depth of the damage caused by a year of global idiocy. We will need courage, too, to rebuild our businesses and our confidence and our self-reliance after a year of being undermined by our own Governments. There is plenty of work ahead of us.


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