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LATEST ADDITIONS TO THE BOOK OF LIFE

  • Why We Think So Much about Our Hair

    It could seem bizarre quite how long we spend on those strands of stringy keratin that sprout - unreliably - from our scalps. We will, over a lifetime, devote thousands of hours and even more money on hairdressers’ careful attempts to coax and sculpt our coiffure into exactly the right colour, shape and dimension. There are days when our entire mood will be supported by a sense that our hair is cooperating and others when our spirits will be just as powerfully600px-Frida_Kahlo,_by_Guillermo_Kahlo
  • Why Tiny Things about our Partners Drive us Mad

    Lovers who’ve been together awhile tend almost universally to get maddened by what look (on the surface) like certain absurdly small matters. An otherwise quite reasonable and decent person might admit to a range of acute sensitivities around some of their partner’s rather minor habits - and a tendency swiftly to lose their temper on encountering them: they press far too hard on the chopping board; they don’t put their seat belt on until after the car is
  • Why We Should Try to Become Better Narcissists

    Accusing someone of narcissism has become one of the great and tempting insults of our age. It is what we are inclined to label anyone who appears overweening, boastful, entitled or excessively pleased with their own existence. But it’s possible to wonder whether the word really fits the conceited and bombastic types we’ve grown used to applying it to - and, a larger point, whether we’re really understanding, and therefore correctly addressing, the origins
  • Why Our Best Thoughts Come to Us in the Shower

    We might suppose that the best place to think would be a large room with a big desk, plenty of natural light and a window with a view - perhaps onto water or a park. This is the premise behind the layout of most offices. The nearer one gets to the top, the closer one’s work station will approximate to this supposed ideal: in tribute to the quality of thinking that, ideally, one would do there. Bosses tend have big desks and even larger views. But theseOffice_in_a_small_city_hopper_1953
  • 22 Questions to Reignite Love

    Occasionally, our relationships need to get re-started. We love one another but a lot has accumulated that we haven’t properly dealt with. Certain things haven’t been said, resentments may have built up, playfulness has been neglected and there is a lot we should - but haven’t found the words - to express. So we've drawn up a set of some of the most important questions that a couple might discuss together in order to reopen channels of feeling and628px-In_the_Conservatory_-_edited
  • Why We May Be Angry Rather Than Sad

    We are sometimes swept away by a mood of sadness that seems to have no cause. We wake up dispirited and listless. We lack energy and direction. Everything loses its taste and the smallest challenges feel unfeasibly heavy. We struggle to see the point of almost anything. We are - as the doctors tell us - in a state of severe depression. One of the strangest but most provocative insights about depression is found in works of psychoanalysis that tell us that640px-Edvard_Munch_-_Melancholy_(1894)

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