the Reads: Mind & Spirit

Dear Arianna Huffington…

the Antidote to... not standing up for yourself

I hope you slept well last night after such an excitingly large turn out when you were ‘In Conversation’ with The School of Life event.

I was the over zealous blonde lady whose highest, straightest arm in the air (that’ll be the combination of yoga and passion for last nights subject) made you choose me to ask the final question…


I asked you, albeit in a less calm, chilled-as-a-veteran-chat-show-host Arianna Huff way (you had a BIG crowd), how we can realistically thread your views on improved wellness and better mental health, happiness and stronger connections with ourselves and those around us into the everyday lives of everyday people. This means school kids, the bus drivers, the lawyers, the checkout girl, traffic warden, (yes even them), single mums, ageing neighbours. The everyone. You cited a couple of cases of wellbeing being infiltrated into certain large organisations but I left unsatisfied, and in a bit of a Huff, to be honest with you.

Here’s the thing. The information you passed on last night, much of it from your latest book, Thrive, has been in the ‘mainstream’ media for many, many years. As a journalist specialising in this sector, myself and many others in the mainstream UK media have been relentlessly writing about this shared passion for the ‘transformative effects of meditation, mindfulness, unplugging and giving has on our culture, our thinking, our workplaces, and our lives’ (that line is Amazon’s bookstore outlining Thrive).

I thoroughly enjoyed your talk last night, delivered in a way only possible by someone who genuinely practises mindfulness, mediation and similar marvels. However, although great to have you on board, we’ve kinda heard this and read about this all before. So I did what you said, went to bed half an hour earlier than I wanted, to rejuvenate and dream. And I woke up BING! with an idea.

You were fresh from the House of Commons yesterday (very fresh and relaxed considering you got stuck in hideous traffic and kept an audience just shy of 1000 waiting) where you had been signing copies of Thrive. (Let’s hope those guys in Parliament read it, eh?).

So how about this: You use your power and money (still two important and influential legs of the three-legged stool you talk of) to really get the Third Metric and third leg of the stool – wellness – out there. If you are truly passionate about us all thriving, which I believe you are, and want to spread the message about ‘redefining success and creating a life of Well-being, Wisdom and Wonder creating happier lives’ (again taken from the sell of Thrive), let’s you and I set another meeting with those same bods at the House Of Commons so we can put this to them:

If you are correct in saying that in Germany the wellness section of the Huffington Post attracts more readers, four times in fact, than the politics section (hoorah), what the UK for one needs, is instead of sending out people to canvas every once and a while about voting for their party when it’s election time, why not send out wellness canvassers who can tell/deliver information to their local constituents about the public and private wellness services and support they have in their local area? Meditation classes, cookery courses, running clubs and swimming pools, yoga centres and bootcamps in the park. Because that is what we all need. No-one, especially the government and NHS, can afford this increasing epidemic of illness. We need a collective collaboration harnessing the power of shared enthusiasm and group motivation with wellness at the heart of each and every political party. They also need to demonstrate their own wellness manifesto and desire to thrive. Any party that does that well and authentically will get my vote.

I am willing to roll up my sleeves and walk our talk. Are you? I’d be so very disappointed if I thought your jumping on the wellness ‘zeitgeist’ as it was referred to many times last night was just to sell another book.

You told us you read all your emails personally, so I thoroughly look forward to your response. And now that I have sent this, hopefully explained myself clearer and got things off my chest, I am no longer in a Huff. Quite the opposite. My cynicism is healthy, comes from a very good place and is fuelled by positive energy and a shared passion.


With love and compassion,

Suzanne Duckett






Spot me in the crowd.
We need a common, as well as commons touch
Mindfullness for the public domain? There’s a thought…