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Why do we cry? How come love hurts? And what’s a happiness researcher doing talking about sadness, anyway? Helen Russell is a journalist and happiness researcher and How to be Sad is a new podcast based on her book of the same name - exploring why we get sad, what to do when we’re sad, and how we can all get happier by learning to be sad, better. Because let’s be honest – we are in unprecedented times. None of us are where we thought we’d be this time last year and we’re all struggling. We’r ...
 
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Whitney Goodman is the radically honest psychotherapist behind the hugely popular Instagram account @sitwithwhit and the author of Toxic Positivity – something she describes ‘as a form of gaslighting’. Here, she explains how meeting struggles with platitudes can shut us down, make us feel shame, or even that we are no longer allowed to feel at all.…
 
My guest today met her husband when she was 19. Three kids and 27 years later, he fell in love with another woman. For several months after finding out, she did little aside from scrape herself off the floor and care for her kids, through their misery and her own. She says of this time: ‘I felt like I was either going to die or learn how to live ag…
 
Tova Leigh is a writer and performer with a global community of 1.6m fans worldwide. Born in Israel, where she practised as a lawyer, Tova moved to the UK to study acting before becoming a household name with her hilarious and honest takes on parenthood, marriage, body confidence and sex. Through her Amazon Prime documentary Mom Life Crisis, bestse…
 
From the outside, life looked great for Mark Rice-Oxley - an editor on a national newspaper – The Guardian - with a happy marriage and three children. But in 2009, he suffered a major episode of depression that took him away from his work, leaving him reliant on medication and professional help for months. He wrote about his experiences in Undernea…
 
This is a special, bonus episode where the tables are turned and I’m the one interviewed by none other than Laurie Santos, Yale professor and host of The Happiness Lab podcast. On The Happiness Lab, Dr Laurie Santos shares evidence-based research that challenges what we think it means to live a happy life. This season, she’s helping listeners navig…
 
My guests today are Jo Piazza and Christine Pride. Jo is a bestselling journalist and author, Christine is her esteemed editor and a publishing veteran. Working together, the pair became friends and now they’ve written a novel together. We are Not Like Them is the story of a lifelong friendship between a Black woman named Riley and a white woman na…
 
My guest today is Mitch Albom - American author, journalist, and musician - whose books have sold 40 million copies worldwide. Having achieved national success as a sports writer in his early career, in 1997 he published Tuesdays With Morrie, an account of the weekly reunions with his old college professor Morrie Schwartz. Morrie was dying when Mit…
 
When writer, radio presenter and podcaster Emily Dean lost her sister to cancer, her world caved in. Within three years, both her parents had died too. She felt as though she’d never be able to move on with such grief – but then along came a shih tzu called Ray and some surprising ways to keep going and find joy again. Emily is a total delight to s…
 
Kate Bowler is a NYT bestselling author; history professor; and ‘an incurable optimist’. Host of the podcast Everything Happens, her TED talk has more than six million views and her book, No Cure for Being Human is a must-read for anyone wanting to find out more about how to be sad, well. When Kate was just 35 years old, thriving in her career and …
 
Today’s guest is Joshua Becker – author, philanthropist, pastor and minimalist. After a personal epiphany, Becker found that when he began owning less, he had more time. He also had more focus, less stress, fewer distractions and more freedom. Because, he says, ‘every added possession increases the worry in our lives.’ Today, he has two million fol…
 
To celebrate the publication of How to be Sad in America and as a special thank you to listeners of the podcast we are delighted to share this exclusive extract from the audiobook. We will be back with a new episode of How to be Sad with Helen Russell next week. An expert on the pursuit of happiness combines her powerful personal story with surpris…
 
Nathaniel Herr is a Professor of Psychology at American University in Washington DC, and an expert in ‘emotional regulation’ – something we should learn in childhood but that many of us miss out on. But by getting better at experiencing, labelling and expressing our emotions as adults, we can ultimately get happier and lead more fulfilled lives. Na…
 
Today’s guest has 2.8M Followers on TikTok, 420 thousand on Instagram and 30.5M Likes but she’s not your typical social media influencer. Dr Julie Smith is the first mental health professional to start using TikTok as a platform for therapy. She’s the clinical psychologist and former NHS staffer who now works as an online educator - and her daily p…
 
“We all learn the value of rest the hard way,” says today’s guest - a former Silicon Valley tech consultant, visiting scholar at Stanford, and author of Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less. Alex Soojung-Kim Pang argues that the perils of overwork are being woefully overlooked, and they’re making us miserable. He says: ”We’re hitting the …
 
Many of us these days are getting the memo that a meaningful, fulfilled life comes only from letting go of our attachments to worldly things, but my guest today has other ideas. Ingrid Fetell Lee is a designer and writer whose spent ten years studying the relationship between design and joy. The author of Joyful, and the blog, Aesthetics of Joy, In…
 
This episode is something of a departure - how often do you hear a happiness researcher in conversation with a heavy metal icon? Not often enough, we decided. So today’s guest is the man who put the gun in Guns ‘n Roses and LA Guns. He’s had 10 studio albums with LA Guns, two with Brides of Destruction, he’s worked with them all – oh, and he used t…
 
Psychologist and New York Times Bestselling author Dr Tal Ben-Shahar taught the most popular course at Harvard on Positive Psychology – but he’s also the perfect guest to help us navigate how to be sad, well. From a dashed career as an elite squash player to navigating the perils of perfectionism, the fallacy of arrival and the importance of feelin…
 
Daisy Buchanan is an award-winning journalist, chart topping podcaster, author of How To Be A Grown Up, The Sisterhood and her latest, Insatiable. As well as being one of the funniest women in print, Daisy has also written incredibly movingly about her own experiences with anxiety, with disordered eating, about her relationship with her body after …
 
Writer and campaigner Rebecca Schiller moved her family to a rural smallholding in the hope of a simpler life. But she soon found that life wasn’t any simpler and was a damn sight harder in many ways. She has written movingly about how we can never escape ourselves – no matter how much we try – as well as her experiences with depression, anxiety, a…
 
Baz Ashmawy is an Irish radio and television star whose series, 50 ways to kill your mammy, won him an Emmy. He’s also a podcaster, dad of six and an outspoken advocate for feeling all the feels. Born in Libya to an Egyptian dad an Irish mum, he moved to Ireland age 6. One of the few dual heritage families in his part of Dublin suburbia at that tim…
 
My guest today is the toy designer Matthew Ashton - Vice President of design at Lego; Executive Producer on the Lego Movies; head judge on Lego Masters UK; creator of Unikitty and the man behind Lego’s first ever LGBTQ+ set – the rainbow inspired Everyone is Awesome. The set represents a huge milestone both for Lego and for Matthew personally, who …
 
Sophie Walker is a journalist, activist and former politician. She spent 20 years at Reuters and after a long and trying journey supporting her daughter through a diagnosis of autism, started campaigning for disability rights. She went on to help create the Women’s Equality Party and ran for London Mayor in 2016. Sophie now works for the feminist l…
 
Jody Day is the founder of Gateway Women, the global support network for childless women - now celebrating its 10th Anniversary. Jody is also a psychotherapist and author of Living the Life Unexpected: How to Find Hope, Meaning and a Fulfilling Future Without Children - the book The British Medical Journal now recommend to patients coming to terms …
 
Dr Xand van Tulleken is a much-loved medic, broadcaster and someone with first hand experience of the impact of covid 19. In spring 2020 Xand contracted Covid while preparing to film a documentary about the virus with his twin, Dr Chris van Tulleken. Xand isolated at home for two weeks but continued to experience strange symptoms, including heart p…
 
Rosie Green is an award winning journalist and columnist who’s spent 20 writing about beauty, fashion, spas and health - as well as interviewing and styling countless celebrities. But she was blindsided when her marriage of 26 years broke down. Nothing prepared her for hitting what Rosie calls ‘rock bottom’ - nor for the response she got when she w…
 
This week, we have our first mother daughter guests on the show. I’m honoured to be joined by Mungi Ngomane, human rights activist, the granddaughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu and author of Everyday Ubuntu - the book inspired by the African philosophy and way of life that counts Meghan Markle and Prince Harry among its fans. And with Mungi today i…
 
Holly Tucker MBE is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and UK Ambassador for Creative Small Businesses. She’s the founder of notonthehighstreet.com and Holly & Co, a small business advice and inspiration platform and she’s also a podcaster and co-author of two best-selling business books as well as the brand new Do What You Love. Holly is a famously …
 
Steph Douglas is a businesswoman, mother of three, wife of Doug, and founder of the thoughtful gift company she started after realising that sometimes - when we’re in need of a pick me up - we might not want another thing we have to look after. Steph has a dedicated Instagram following thanks to hilarious and occasionally heart-breaking posts about…
 
Yomi Adegoke is an award-winning journalist; columnist for Vogue and The Guardian; and bestselling author of Slay In Your Lane: The Black Girl Bible - written with her best friend, Elizabeth Uviebinené, based on interviews with 39 successful Black British women, packed full of data, advice and inspiration. In 2020 Yomi and Elizabeth published Loud …
 
Helen Thorn is an award winning stand-up comedian, writer and podcaster – one-half of comedy double act Scummy Mummies and co-host of the UK’s number one parenting podcast as well as the body positivity podcast, Fat Lot Of Good. Here, Helen talks about her marriage ending in lockdown, the shock of the loss, the fallout and its impact on her family.…
 
Cathy Rentzenbrink is a bestselling author, former editor at The Bookseller magazine and head of Quick Reads – short books to encourage adults who may not be readers. Because as Cathy believes: ‘After the wheel, the book must be one of the great inventions' since books are ‘a life raft’ - something Cathy has needed, more than once. When she was 17,…
 
Mo Gawdat of Solve For Happy is a tech entrepreneur, engineer, and former chief business officer for Google X - the “moonshot” factory tackling the world’s toughest problems in innovative ways. Mo reached a place early in life where he was extremely successful, yet deeply unhappy. He set about solving this, developing an equation for happiness. But…
 
Today is publication day for Helen’s new book How to be Sad. As a special thank you to listeners of the podcast we are delighted to share this exclusive extract from the audiobook. We will be back with a new episode of How to Be Sad with Helen Russell next week. We live in an age when reality TV shows climax in a tearful finale. But feeling sad – g…
 
Hollie McNish is a poet, writer and Ted Hughes Award-winning author of Nobody Told Me – a collection of poems and stories about raising a child in modern Britain.. Hollie writes with raw honesty, warmth and humour, but as well as great critical and mainstream success, she’s also had her fair share of setbacks and her work articulates perfectly the …
 
Meik Wiking is a Danish happiness researcher, CEO of the Happiness Research Institute, and author of the bestselling Little Book of Hygge. Meik is committed to researching into how more of us can get happier, but in doing so, he’s also studied what doesn’t make us happier. His latest report studied the impact of the coronavirus on wellbeing and - s…
 
Ella Mills of Deliciously Ella is a champion of plant-based living, an award-winning author, and an adept businesswoman.Here, Ella also opens up about her lows and feeling vulnerable at times - not least where it all began with a debilitating condition that started her quest for change.In this episode, Ella talks to Helen about: Loss Regret Chronic…
 
Why do we cry? How come love hurts? And what’s a happiness researcher doing talking about sadness, anyway? Helen Russell is a journalist and happiness researcher and How to be Sad is a new podcast based on her book of the same name - exploring why we get sad, what to do when we’re sad, and how we can all get happier by learning to be sad, better. B…
 
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