Byron Katie was deeply depressed when a radical change left her joyful. She now uses her secret to help others – whether brutalised by war or merely stressed

For a long time, Byron Katie’s children thought she was having them on. Her character seemed to change overnight, and they didn’t trust her one bit.

For 10 years – until that day – she had spiralled into rage, paranoia and despair, becoming so depressed she seldom left her house. She’d stayed in bed for weeks at a time, and her children learned to tiptoe past her door to avoid her furious outbursts.

I can transform the situation by becoming aware of what it is I’m thinking and then questioning those stressful thoughts

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Mental health is a level of psychological well-being, or an absence of a mental disorder; it is the "psychological state of someone who is functioning at a satisfactory level of emotional and behavioral adjustment".