Should we stress about stress?

‘If we think of stress as a prelude to a heart attack, we’re likely to suffer worse consequences than if we see it as a healthy sign’

Can we get used to anything?

‘We all have a set point of happiness or unhappiness we revert to after the first flush of change has died down’

Which great thinker is most relevant today?

‘We need someone who understands why we ought to be sceptical and who can help us not just survive but thrive on our doubt’

Should we avoid distraction?

‘I often find people who monomaniacally keep their focus on one thing quite disturbing’

Can we be too secure?

‘We have to accept that what we believe might be false, what we take to be most real might be an illusion’

Should we strike a balance?

‘Sometimes what is needed is not balance but someone really to rock the boat’

How can we be content in a world full of choice?

We waste too many hours comparing the options on smartphones or computers, for marginal benefit, if any

When should we say no?

‘The greatest injustices in history have persisted because not enough people were willing to say no to the status quo’

Is confusion good?

‘There is something attractive about the idea of embracing life’s mysteries but there is nothing appealing about discombobulation’

Should we invite the unwelcome?

‘Our natural tendency is to focus on what fits our world view and ignore what doesn’t’

How should we look after ourselves?

‘“Go on, you deserve it,” we’re told, only to be ticked off for having splurged too much’

Are you selfish?

‘Selfishness in genes is not the same as selfishness in the whole human being’

Are you in the spotlight?

Our viewpoint is ‘me-centred’, so it’s only natural to assume that everybody else takes the same close interest in us

Should we ‘get over it’?

‘Those who can neither forgive nor forget are doomed to be eaten up from within by their own resentments’

What transforms us?

‘Philosophy is rarely transformative, being neither a good cure for misery nor a cause of it’

Are good intentions enough?

‘Effort and intention are up to us, whereas results depend on the precarious outside world’

Should we have pets?

‘At best, the pet-human relationship is a mutually beneficial symbiotic relationship’

Do we need props?

‘The main issue is whether gadgets and apps help us to run our lives or whether we allow ourselves to be ruled by them’

What do we owe our parents?

We want to both pay our debt to our parents and lash out for the baggage they’ve bequeathed us

Should we meditate?

In terms of health, meditation is lodging itself firmly alongside your five-a-day and physical exercise

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