Must all good things come to an end?

‘Everything that we have done cannot be undone. No achievement can be taken away’

Should we accept our limitations?

‘News about our amazing plastic brain supports the view that what we can be is much more diverse than we think’

Should we share our troubles with others?

‘The dentist’s receptionist may not be the best person in whom to confide our deepest worries’

Is it better to give or to receive?

‘Studies have found that people who do acts of kindness experience increased happiness and well-being’

Must we be cruel to be kind?

‘How, without being rude, do you discourage a friend who wants to be in touch much more than you’d like?’

Does life have to be difficult?

‘You might escape from pain and loss by cultivating a disinterested detachment. But for me this comes at too high a cost’

Is it time to unfriend social media?

‘Being online offers pleasures that demand little time and effort, when most of what is valuable requires a fair bit of both’

Is balance boring?

Conviction is overrated and the value of ‘knowing your own mind’ misunderstood

Should we love our children unconditionally?

‘The main quality you need to develop is compassion — for yourself and your child’

Are we optimists or pessimists?

‘Gloom is easily mistaken for intellectual depth. Have you ever seen a photo of a smiling existentialist?’

Should we ever delay the inevitable?

‘Sometimes it pays to take charge of a situation instead of just letting it run its course’

Is there sense in common sense?

‘We need to stop attempting to escape and to turn towards our experience’

How do we respect others’ choices?

‘True respect requires everyone to see others as capable of hearing criticisms and debating about them’

Should we be embarrassed?

It’s not just friends who can leave us red-faced but even compatriots who behave badly abroad

Is work good for us?

‘So interdependent is society that no one can claim to owe their affluence solely to their own talent or effort’

Must we get to the bottom of things?

‘Simply accepting that there are no ultimate grounds for anything looks like a cop-out’

How important is our environment?

‘If we have a tendency to run away from problems, we’d do well to question our motivation in seeking a change of scene’

Do we need metaphors?

‘Should we at least try to purge metaphor from rigorous disciplines such as philosophy, science and economics?’

Does an apology matter?

‘Far from being the hardest word, saying sorry is much easier than addressing the legacy of historical injustices’

Should we break our routines?

‘Excellence usually requires discipline and effort, and these are helped by the structures of routines’

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