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Masculinity and male mental health: problems and possibilities
Mental health problems in men are under-diagnosed, and male suicide rates remain high. Research highlights ‘masculinity’ as a key factor here; for example, ‘traditional’ masculinity ideals such as toughness, self-reliance and emotional control have been found to discourage men from talking about their emotional problems or seeking help, with many men adopting poor coping strategies, such as heavy drinking. On a more positive note, ‘masculinity’ can be leveraged to promote better mental health, and recent gender-informed initiatives are reaching many men, with promising results.
Mindfulness – mad to be into it or mad to be out of it?
Why has the world gone mad for mindfulness? What are the claims about it and how good is the evidence for it? Routine mindfulness practice is claimed to improve many aspects of people’s lives, including reduced stress, better pain management, feeling more in control and improved well-being. But many people think mindfulness is a fad, or even worse, an opiate for the masses. So we will examine what the gold standard studies reveal about mindfulness and psychological well-being before taking a look at the trend to bring mindfulness into our schools and workplaces.