My Articles

My articles provide you with a collection of interesting and relevant insights into a number of life-related topics, aimed at developing your YOU-Q and helping you find your Inner Winner.  Browse the articles for the information you need to regain control of your life.

Over the course of my career, I have often been asked by print and radio journalists to give my expert opinion on a variety of topics. You can read these articles on the magazine page and listen to the interviews I have given on the radio page of Claire in the Media. They make for interesting reading and listening.

Whether people celebrate Christmas in the true Christian sense or not, the end of year holiday season is traditionally a time when families and friends get together. The emphasis is very much on reunions – people travel from far and wide, spare rooms are made up and more people are squashed around the dining room table.

Hollywood plays its part, portraying Christmas as the harmonious coming together of friends and family, the giving and receiving of wonderful gifts and the sharing of fabulous meals around the table. But the reality of Christmas for so many people is not like the movies at all. Christmas is fraught with tension, stress and depression for many.

This article was written by Guest Blogger: Tracy Ruff

Bipolar disorder is one of the most debilitating mental illnesses that can severely impact one’s life. In terms of causes of disability, bipolar disorder is ranked in the top 10 in developed countries. At any one time, up to 51 million people worldwide have the disorder and its prevalence rate is approximately 1.1% of the global population.

While this figure may not seem like much when compared to other chronic illnesses (40% of the world’s population has hypertension, for example); it is imperative for the general public to understand just how serious the condition is. This is why on the 30 March various global initiatives will be celebrating World Bipolar Day to increase awareness and challenge the terrible stigma associated with the disorder.

Studies show that between 10% and 40% of women will be afflicted by postpartum depression. If one takes the lowest figure of 10%, there are at least 50 000 new cases of postpartum depression per year in South Africa alone. The real tragedy is that for many of these women, it is never even picked up, because despite the considerable number of cases, the condition generally remains undiagnosed and untreated.

Postpartum depression does not only affect the mother – it can affect the entire family – so it is time we all understood more about the illness to play our part in recognising and defeating this highly treatable and avoidable condition.

Bad vibes in the workplace are not only detrimental to staff morale and productivity they can also have a negative effect on your health and wellbeing, not to mention your career prospects. Every way you look at it, it is a good idea to learn to control your anger at work.

Do you believe that people are successful because they work hard and earn their success? Or is it just about being in the right place at the right time? In other words, do you control your life or does something else (like a god, luck or destiny) control it? Your answer depends on your “Locus of Control”.

Most of us think we know how to have a conversation and so do it without thinking, but there is actually an art to conversation and it’s a skill well worth developing. If we want to do it correctly we must avoid the following common errors...

“Men feel disturbed not by things, but by the views which they take of them.”
 Epictetus (First century stoic philosopher)

“As people think, so shall they be.”
 Bible (Proverbs 23:7)

“…for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”
 Shakespeare (Hamlet Act 2, scene 2, lines 249–250)

If you ask someone to list their values, the chances are they will mention ‘integrity’, but ask them to define integrity, or how it affects their lives, and they can’t.

We are taught from an early age that integrity is a good value to uphold, but we don’t really know what it is!

So what is integrity all about and what does it mean?

In our hectic, modern lifestyles, most of us focus so heavily on work and family commitments that we never seem to have time for pure fun. Somewhere between childhood and adulthood, we stopped playing. Even when we do make time for leisure, we're more likely to sit in front of the TV or computer than engage in fun, rejuvenating play like we did as children. But the reality is that we don’t have to take ourselves so seriously just because we’re adults. By giving ourselves permission to play with the joyful abandon of childhood, we will reap a variety of health benefits throughout life.

At the beginning of every year, most people make plans and set goals for the year ahead. It’s a great idea, because knowing where you want to go is important – How can you get there, if you don’t know where you are going?

With my sailing background, one of my favourite quotes is “If a man knows not what harbour he seeks, any wind is the right wind.” ~ Seneca ~

But a sailor does not just allow himself to be blown about the ocean. It doesn’t matter what the wind, he just resets his sails to take him in the direction he wants to go. In the same way, when you know what you want out of life, you can set your course to get there, no matter what the circumstances.

But, you need to know where you want to go… you need to have a vision!

To help you clarify your vision, it may help to create a vision board (also called a Dream Board).