Learn how to be completely satisfied: therapist Owen O’Kane on pleasure and psychological wellbeing


happy woman smiling

Therapist Owen exhibits us the path to happiness in his new ebook (Picture: Getty Photographs)

“That cardigan was completely hideous,” he exclaims in his tender Irish accent. “It was gray and overly crafted, a thick, horrible knit with 4 horrible brown buttons on it. A badly fitted style catastrophe at its worst. It appeared very en vogue for a therapist on the time. Once I first meet purchasers, they’re usually shocked by my look. Individuals don’t anticipate to fulfill a human being, however when you construct belief you’re midway there. I’m a human face, not a robotic stereotype.”

We’re within the midst of the coronavirus lockdown and Owen is educating us all about happiness from the protection of his own residence.

He’s a person of many abilities, having skilled as a psychotherapist and spent 25 years within the NHS.

He began in palliative care and is now a psychological well being medical lead.

In 2018 he revealed his first ebook, Ten To Zen, about discovering calm and happiness.

Now, in well timed style, he’s introduced out Ten Instances Happier to assist us all enhance our psychological well being, let go of the previous and dwell a brighter life.

“It’s not a ebook of magical fairy mud,” he warns. “I simply wish to give an open, frequent sense view of happiness.” 

“Individuals get in the way in which of their very own happiness and so they can’t see how they do it. We solely get one life and our time right here is restricted, so we’ve to make the perfect of our journey.”

Ten Instances Happier is a no-jargon method to enhancing our wellbeing.

Owen picks out 10 sticking factors in our lives – together with the previous, regrets, fear, blaming or evaluating – and gives recommendation on methods to flip issues round in 4 easy steps.

“There isn’t a definition of what happiness is however most individuals know after they’re in a greater place of their lives,” he explains.

“Usually we battle a lot with our inner world that we block happiness with out realising.”

“What I’m making an attempt to do is unblock all of the stuff that will get in the way in which, no matter it could be.”

Owen O'Kane

Owen has struggled along with his personal happiness, too (Picture: Nicky Johnston)

Enhancing your mindset, he says, is a bit like going to the fitness center. It’s all about dedication – in any other case you gained’t see any change.

“That is no fast repair. What I hope this ebook does in every chapter is determine what the issue may be. When you’ve discovered the issue I’ll show you how to perceive why you may be struggling and present a approach ahead,” he says.

“Therapists can’t remedy the issue, however we will assist you. It’s your selection to alter your life. The sense of freedom on the finish is unbelievable – and also you’ve bought the instruments to go ahead.”

Ten Times Happier

Owen’s ebook Ten Instances Happier is out now (Picture: HQ, Harper Collins)

Owen has devoted the ebook to every of his purchasers and tells their tales with care whereas revealing his personal struggles.

His largest inspiration has been the folks he hung out with in palliative care.

Owen helped to make folks really feel as comfy and calm as potential as they reached the top of their lives.

He learnt about regrets in life and what folks wished they may change.

“I keep in mind a lady in her thirties who developed a cough and was identified with superior lung most cancers. Her world turned the wrong way up in a single day,” he remembers.

“It was my job to get her secure sufficient to go on her final vacation. She talked continuously about how otherwise she would dwell her life.”

“Whenever you work with somebody who’s going through mortality head-on, there’s a knowledge there you could’t recreate.”

“That woman was pressured to rethink and see life by way of a unique lens. I’d be rocking up for work with my peculiar, on a regular basis issues like worrying in regards to the canine or what mortgage I used to be going to get.”

“When somebody is confronted with a life-and-death situation they’re pressured to strip by way of all of that and get to the stuff that issues.”

Owen is aware of how troublesome it may be to confront the previous and let it go.

He spent his childhood in Belfast throughout the Troubles, the battle between Catholics and Protestants by which violent riots, bombs and gun battles spilled into the streets, killing greater than 3,000 folks in whole.

A homosexual Catholic, Owen was bullied in school and battled along with his sexuality.

He skilled as a priest and took himself to France to attempt to remedy his “sickness” within the holy springs of Lourdes.

“I owe it to folks to offer them the reality about my story, that I’m not some excellent guru.”

I get what you’re battling and if I haven’t skilled it, I’ve heard it,” he confesses.

“Once I left Northern Eire I realised how a lot the Troubles impacted my life.”

I used to be so hard-wired to be in risk mode I dropped to the ground at a theatre after I heard a bang.”

“I keep in mind the sense of liberation I felt coming to London, going to my first homosexual membership and never feeling like I needed to sneak by way of the again door.”

“That’s after I stopped, mirrored and realised that my life wasn’t simple in any respect.”

Whereas coaching as a therapist, Owen started to discover and perceive the issues he struggled with himself, similar to a need to be continuously good and feeling unable to make the smallest mistake.

“Now I do know I’m human and it’s okay to get issues unsuitable.”

“I attempted to create certainty in my life after I left Northern Eire. Now, when issues change, I’ve to navigate round it.”

“All of us have an enormous interval of uncertainty forward of us and that evokes an anxiousness that I’ve to pay attention to.”

“The nice factor is I can see it now for what it’s. I understand how to maneuver into it quite than run away,” he says.

As we grapple with a unique sort of life away from family and friends, working from dwelling and lacking out on holidays, Owen is making the perfect of the current and discovering positives in day-after-day.

“I’m grateful for having a house and having security, for my supportive accomplice and my little Westie canine, Kate.”

“Canine haven’t bought a clue what’s occurring proper now, so she retains me centred and balanced,” he smiles.

“I maintain my routine as a lot as potential. I nonetheless work with my purchasers over Skype and maintain involved with pals.”

“I meditate day-after-day and I’m going out for a stroll. It’s taken a world pandemic to make us cease and take into consideration the great issues in life.”

Remedy doesn’t deserve the unhealthy press it nonetheless tends to get, however it actually shouldn’t, Owen provides.

In any case, happiness takes numerous work.

“Individuals assume it’s all about mendacity on couches.”

“Truly, speaking to a different human, exploring your life and dealing in direction of an answer can create hope and freedom and that may solely be factor.”

“In case you strip away the taboos, discovering a therapist could be really life altering.”

Ten Instances Happier: How To Let Go Of What’s Holding You Again by Owen O’Kane (HQ, Harper Collins).



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