It’s often their imperfections and departures from the norm that make people  memorable.

A child comes home with an assignment for which the teacher has given a mark of 90 per cent and shows it proudly to the parents. They respond by askin(...)

Alone in a crowd: Isolation is a problem that can be addressed by people being more present for other people.

Wandering around Eason the other day I noticed a group of young men listening with full attention to another young man who was explaining things to th(...)

A trouble shared is shared through words and the naming of one’s feelings in words is calming.

Men of few words are, in my experience, more common than women of few words. When the man of few words speaks at all it is with a certain tetchiness a(...)

Young people can feel lonely when they have moved away from home  to go to college or to work  or when their own friends have moved away.

Who is most likely to feel lonely? Most of us probably think it’s the old but actually it’s the young, according to a BBC survey. The BBC Loneliness (...)

Here’s another trap: imagining that everybody but you is having a fantastic time throwing back the booze in warmth and conviviality. Photograph: iStock

If you joined those who decided to do “dry January”, you are by now in the very early stages of your 31-day journey. Whether the journey is looking to(...)

Most of us don’t talk to ourselves out loud except under stress – more than one reader will hear a muttered “God give me patience” during the season of peace and goodwill as the speaker’s stress escapes from inside his or her head. Photograph: iStock

How many versions of you are there, inside your head? It’s a safe bet that, psychologically, there are more than one and Christmas, with its demands a(...)

Bickering could be a way for couples to maintain autonomy while fitting into the confines of their long-term relationship.

One of the earliest counselling training videos I ever saw was known to students as “the bickering couple”. In the video, the couple bickered constan(...)

You hear noise at night – how do you react?

Imagine you are alone in a room in an empty house late at night. You are reading a book. The room is dark apart from the light from a reading lamp. S(...)

My favourite card in the Tarot pack is the one that depicts the fool.

Long is the journey that is made in the company of a fool, says one of the Buddhist books. It strikes me that a journey in the company of a wise man o(...)

The wisdom of the centuries can be heard on a bus. Photograph: iStock

I was reminded of the wisdom of the centuries on the 123 bus in Dublin the other day when listening to two young men having an argument. It appeared (...)

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