This year, for the first time, I will be waking up on Christmas Day without any children in my house. As readers of this column know, I separated from my wife earlier this year, and my two youngest daughters will be getting their stockings and presents at their mum’s (as will my two eldest, with their mum). I know this is a time of year that many people dread, and single parents are among them. Christmas Day on your own seems to represent not joy and togetherness, but melancholy and separateness.
I have been reading Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me) by Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson, a book about cognitive dissonance – the phenomenon that arises, with uncomfortable feelings, when two deeply held internal points of view come into conflict with one another. To avoid such feelings, we resort to self-justification. The book contains a chapter on cognitive dissonance in marriage, which holds this process to be the main culprit in the outcome of relationships.
Those who evangelise about teaching children resilience are typically rightwing commentators who believe children should go to the school of hard knocks to “acquire” it. By this token, to take it to extremes, being bullied does you no end of good because it “knocks the edges off you”. However, throwing you to the wolves does not make you resilient. It makes you dog meat. “Toughening up” doesn’t mean maximising pain in the hope that you will end up inoculated from its effects.
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Musk AND Zuckerberg or Musk + Zuckerberg.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used). For example, results will contain either cake or cookie by searching cake OR cookie or cake,cookie
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".