No one can fault the nation’s work ethic, but it’s not making us happy.

Last year, Mental Health First Aid England reported that one in six workers will experience depression, anxiety or problems relating to stress at any one time.
Cary Cooper (@ProfCaryCooper), a professor at the University of Manchester, says that 20 years ago the leading cause of absence at work was backache — now it’s stress, anxiety and depression.

“It was 57% of all long-term sickness absence. During the pandemic it rose to 63%.”
“In our digital age, we have to process a lot of information. That requires your brain to be in a state of high vigilance,” says Dr Mithu Storoni (@StoroniMithu), a neuroscience researcher. It puts us on the “absolute edge”.
When you’re already struggling to cope with deadlines, email flurries, pinging phones and frequent attention-switching, she explains, a small trigger — spilling coffee over your work, a curt interaction with a colleague — can tip you into a state of acute stress. Image
Why are we working so much? Partly because the pandemic turned our homes into offices and hybrid-working has normalised bad habits, such as getting up and opening our laptop 15 minutes later. 💻
So how can we better manage stress?

Learn to prioritise your workload. “Ask yourself, ‘What is the most important thing I must do over the next 24, 48 hours?’ Attend to that and leave the rest for a few days,” says @ProfCaryCooper.
Get on top of negative thinking 🧠

Be constructive. “Ask practical questions. ‘Why?’ makes you feel powerless. ‘How?’ gives you something to work on — and more control,” says @StoroniMithu.
Stop checking your emails first thing 💻

We do this to feel in control and get a head start on the day, but it’s a no-no, @ProfCaryCooper says, because “it’s best to avoid getting ‘pumped up’ first thing.”
Switch off outside office hours ❌

If your day at work has been “stress, stress, stress”, then you come home and do nothing, that stressful state is prolonged, @StoroniMithu says. You need a circuit-breaker, she says, such as going for a run or reading a book.
Move from your desk 🚶‍♀️

Being parked on your backside for hours on end is harmful to your physical and mental health. Regular short breaks can improve your mood and lessen feelings of fatigue.

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More from @thetimes

16 Sep
Analysis 🔎: Is the West entering a Cold War with China?

Supplying Australia with nuclear submarines is a bold move that heralds a new era of tension, writes Asia editor @dicklp…
Tension and unease about the West’s future relationship with China has taken dramatically concrete form with the announcement of AUKUS, the “enhanced trilateral security partnership” between Australia, Britain and the USA
Australia, ranked 59th by size among the world’s military forces, is to be supplied with nuclear submarines by its two partners.

The dream of peaceful competition and co-existence — spirited, vigorous, but harmless rivalry — is melting away.
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16 Sep
When the Afghan girls’ robotics team went from fêted to fearing for their lives, they only had one person to call: an AI expert in Oxfordshire.…
Fatemah Qaderyan, Kawsar Roshan, Lida Azizi and Saghar, who prefers her surname not to be used, were members of the Afghan girls’ robotics team.

They travelled the world as schoolgirls, winning medals for their robots and tech expertise. Image
They were famous at home in Afghanistan and fêted abroad, and now they have fled. It has never been easy to be an educated, independent young woman in Afghanistan. Today it could be a death sentence.
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16 Sep
"I opened the door to an industry that never was for us. I feel I have opened the door to the lion’s mouth."

Halima Aden was born in a refugee camp, then became a catwalk star and a Unicef ambassador — and walked away from both. She explains why.…
Has the first woman to wear a hijab on the cover of Vogue fallen out of love with fashion?

She flashes a look suggesting that’s not even the half of it. “Oh, just a little bit,” she says.
For four years she was fashion’s darling of diversity. When she was an unknown 19-year-old, her contract stipulated a private dressing space at shows and no male stylists.

Modesty was a must, the hijab non-negotiable. Sticking to her guns, she shot to the top. Then she quit. Image
Read 13 tweets
15 Sep
Americans are flocking to defunct uranium mines in Montana for what many believe is a fountain of youth gushing with radioactive gas – in direct defiance of health warnings from experts…
The Environmental Protection Agency says the gas is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the US, responsible for 21,000 deaths each year

The World Health Organisation also warns against exposure
Although doctors use radiation as a cancer treatment, the capacity for low-dose exposure to treat other conditions is the subject of fierce debate

“In clinical therapy, we know exactly what the dose is, we know exactly where it’s going” says Brian Marples, an oncology professor
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14 Sep
Non-disclosure agreements, or NDAs, are gagging clauses – invented to prevent departing employees running off with intellectual property

Today, their use is a modus operandi for powerful men such as Harvey Weinstein and Donald Trump to silence victims…
But their reach extends far beyond even that: these days, they’re used to hush up bad practice at almost every level, in the church, academia, politics, hospitals and construction
A BBC survey in 2020 found that about six students a month signed NDAs with British universities…
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13 Sep
Exclusive: Three senior producers at GB News quit within days of each other last week, as the station's increasingly populist agenda polarises those within its newsroom

The former BBC anchor Simon McCoy is also believed to be considering his position…
Andrew Neil’s departure as GB News’s top presenter and chairman will also be confirmed within a matter of days as the channel’s top team are reconciled to his decision
Two camps are said to have emerged at the channel:

One side of the divide are those who consider themselves traditional news journalists

The other is a growing roster of populist commentators who are making the station’s agenda more like that of Fox News
Read 7 tweets

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