“Apply yourself to thinking through difficulties – hard times can be softened, tight squeezes widened, and heavy loads made lighter for those who apply the right pressure.” Seneca, On Tranquility of Mind.


Apply yourself to logical thinking – abstract, objective, facts-based exploration of the situation you find yourself in – and avoid where possible becoming engrossed in your emotional reaction to hardship. Emotional thinking will continue to focus on worrying about the future or wishing the better days gone by would come back (rumination is bad for you!).


Thinking through difficulties needn’t be a solo sport designed for one brain only: recruit some more brains by sharing your challenges with others. Not only can they help challenge the ‘facts’ as you see it, but they can also help with advice and that most-precious of resources – positive encouragement.


Don’t be a gibbon: reach out and talk to someone. They’ll be only too pleased to help.

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