Podcasts posts

Break until mid-October 2017

Hi all, Just a quick update for you. I’m lucky enough to have recently become a dad again, and I’m also a candidate in the NZ General Election for the Labour Party.  So, I’ll be taking a break from podcasting for a few weeks, but I’ll be back again in the middle of October. Until […]

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It is clear that 4 out of 5 people have experienced a mental health disorder by the time they reach midlife. What do we know about those who don’t?

You might be familiar with the often quoted statistic that 1 in 4 or 1 in 5 people experience mental health difficulties. What you might not be aware of is that is the answer if people are answering about what they are experiencing at that particular point in time. Long-term studies following the same people […]

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Can the news media play a key role in triggering psychological reactions to terrorism?

In July 2011, Anders Breivik killed 77 adults and children in a bombing in Oslo and a subsequent shooting on a nearby island where the Norwegian Labor Party’s youth organisation was having their summer camp. I talk with Dr Bertel Hansen of the Department of Political Science at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark about […]

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My NZ Fabians Society Seminar: Broaden and Build – Key elements for an effective mental health system in Aotearoa New Zealand

On Friday 21 July, I gave an invited seminar to the NZ Fabians Society in Wellington. It was entitled, “Broaden and Build – Key elements for an effective mental health system in Aotearoa New Zealand”. Amongst other issues, in this discussion I provided reminders of the importance of exposure to unfavourable social, economic and environmental […]

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Scared behind the wheel: How driving anxiety may influence our health and wellbeing

Leaning drive has been a rite of passage in many societies for decades. For many, it is a central part of their everyday lives, especially if they live in rural areas, or where other alternatives aren’t as practical or appealing. But what happens if we become anxious about driving? How might that shape our lives […]

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Integrated consciousness: A framework for making sense of the world around and within us

Consciousness is a curious and complex phenomenon. There are many ideas about what consciousness means and how it comes about, but I came across a compelling and relatively simple argument when I attended TEDFest this year – where the TED2017 conference was livestreamed for TEDx conference organisers from around the world, all convened in New […]

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The surprising upside of worrying #28

Worrying can be described as the process of unpleasant thoughts that keep coming back and cause us to be anxious or distressed. Although it’s certainly true that worrying is often seen as a problem, there is increasing evidence that it can also be seen in positive ways too.  In this show I speak with Associate Professor […]

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The recycled self: How our identity relates to whether we recycle a product or not #27

If you drink coffee and buy that in a shop, the barista might call out your name – which may be written on your disposable cup – when it’s ready. Does the fact that your name is written on the cup have an influence on whether you choose to recycle it or not? Even if […]

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1747 people talk about their experience taking antidepressants

About 1 in 9 adult New Zealanders receive a prescription for antidepressants each year. Although we think they are generally helpful for people, we know surprisingly little about what it might be like to take them. This week I speak with Associate Professor Dr Kerry Gibson from the School of Psychology at the University of Auckland […]

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Do we fear death less after a ‘near-death experience’?

‘Near-death experiences’ come up often in films and novels – the idea of a ‘white light’ or experiencing meeting loved ones from years before. But are there common aspects to these experiences? And what sorts of consequences might they have once you have them? This week I speak with Dr Natasha Tassell-Matamua, Senior Lecturer in the […]

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