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Useful resources for Kiwis coping with COVID-19

COVID-19 has rapidly changed our world and how we live, work and play. If you’re feeling anxious, worried, or scared, you’re not alone. It’s normal to feel worried about things like your job, health, family, and what’s going to happen next. Taking action when you’re feeling emotionally and mentally stressed is important. You can get through these uncertain times and, if you need support, there are lots of helpful resources available. Get support if you need it If you’re feeling completely overwhelmed and stressed, ask for support as soon as possible. If you need help you can: contact a close friend or family member and ask for support contact a minister, spiritual leader or someone in your faith community who can help use an employee assistance program if your employer has one. These services usually offer counselling or can refer you to a mental health professional call your doctor or a mental health professional for advice and guidance. During COVID-19 the option of phone, video
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Review of Wellbeing app - Groov by Mentemia

Living in our increasingly stressful world, many people have difficulty coping with everything that life throws their way. COVID, job losses, increased cost of living, and family health concerns are some of the main sources of anxiety in our society. Despite these extra burdens, there are things we can do to reduce our stress and anxiety levels and improve our mental wellbeing. Every other day there seems to be a new wellbeing app or mental health initiative announced and it can be difficult deciding which one is the most useful or relevant. One stands out amongst the crowd – the New Zealand-created app/website ‘Groov’ (formerly Mentemia). Since its inception back in 2018, Sir John Kirwan has been the brains behind the development of the Mentemia/Groov app, which is designed to improve users’ mental health and wellbeing. This tool is very easy to use and has up-to-date information, advice and exercises that can help most people navigate their way through difficult times. John Kirwa

Jacques Lacan's theory of the 'Mirror Stage'

Jacques-Marie-Émile Lacan (April 13, 1901 - September 9, 1981) was a French psychoanalyst and psychiatrist, who made prominent contributions to the psychoanalytic movement. His yearly seminars, conducted in Paris from 1953 until his death in 1981, were a major influence in the French intellectual milieu of the 1960s and 1970s, particularly among post-structuralist thinkers [1].           Lacan's ideas centred on Freudian concepts: e.g. the unconscious, the castration complex, the ego. He also focussed on identifications and the centrality of language to subjectivity. His work was interdisciplinary, drawing on linguistics, philosophy, and mathematics, amongst others. Although a controversial and divisive figure, Lacan is widely read in critical theory, literary studies, and twentieth-century French philosophy, as well as in the living practice of clinical psychoanalysis. Lacan's first official contribution to psychoanalysis was his theory of the 'Mirror Stage.'        

Academic book review of Stanley Fish's 'Professional Correctness: Literary Studies and Political Change'

In his book,  Professional Correctness: Literary Studies and Political Change [1],   Stanley Fish argues against the epistemological and political agendas of cultural studies, as being without justification and understanding in their treatment of the discipline of literary studies and ‘interdisciplinarity’. The strength of his critique is apparent in his internal knowledge and defence of the discipline of literary studies, as being essentially different and distinct as a discipline, from that of cultural studies. While there is great strength to his critique, there are also weaknesses. One of those weaknesses, I will argue, is his refusal to acknowledge the growing influence of external forces outside and inside the discipline of literary criticism. Fish argues in favour of a return to the practice of literary criticism in and for itself, free from the political concerns associated with cultural studies. The political or cultural studies approach, in his opinion, is founded upon the mi

Because the world needs poetry right now (and always)

Annual Commemoration of the Divine Passion You eclipse me & I have stained the Sun with black love . . . death from a bottle cools my ardour for a while, until I see you again. The damp distance is bleached then blackened with shadows & flocks of shrill birds, screaming for blood Bound hands grow swollen body – silently numbed a bed on fire I laid upon now reddened with burning life In these blistered hours of insomnia objects are like lead I believe they are other things & less than they are as if fewer of them would create a stillness like sleep — if only to dream of her again . . . The cushions beckon in the mirror white & summoning, judicious the bed reflected in that fantasy land, that round pool of hope Why stir dust on a sacred tomb as I lay down with a prayer for darkness a snowflake melts on her virgin eyelids somewhere & now, together again we drink every breath of poisoned air she asleep, I awake . . . Not believing in resu

Review of my book, 'Secrets of Best-Selling Self-Published Authors'

The following is a review of my book Secrets of Best-Selling Self-Published Authors ,  from www.imlovingbooks.com.  Any authors out there who have hit the 'best-seller' lists who would like to be featured and interviewed in the next volume of this book series, please contact me via my contact page .   SECRETS OF BEST-SELLING SELF-PUBLISHED AUTHORS  – A SELF-PUBLISHING NON-FICTION GUIDE   In  Secrets of Best-Selling Self-Published Authors,  William Cook, author and entrepreneur, shares a selection of interviews from his popular online interview series, alongside an analysis of the interviews and two fresh essays: ‘Self Published Author VS Successful Self-Published Author’ and ‘Growth Hacking for Authors.’ Along with the interviews and essays, a very helpful and inspiring list of ‘Indie Power Tips’ is included. OUR SUMMARY Secrets of Best-Selling Self-Published Authors  is a self-publishing non-fiction book. It features tips, interviews, and essays that will help aspiring

New release - A Sanctuary of Sorts & Other Stories by NZ author GW Cook

A Sanctuary of Sorts & Other Stories  is a chronicle of dreamers, lost souls, and the downtrodden. With nine bleak tales set in New Zealand suburbs, countryside, small towns and factories, GW Cook stakes his claim as a writer of edgy literary fiction with this debut collection. His deceptively simple prose portrays a broken world, where the banality of life and the intrusion of The Western Dream is the disease, and the merciless response of nature, is the cure. The tragically failed characters that populate the pages of  A Sanctuary of Sorts & Other Stories  are vividly infused with Cook’s signature blend of domestic tragedy and farce, dark existential themes, and a bitter sense of irony   Writing about the profundity and despair of urban existence, love, relationships, work, despair, life and death, Cook takes an unflinching look into the abyss of modern life. These stories deal with the big questions and explore the fault lines of our own morality, delving into what it is tha