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Depression and Anxiety Are NOT Chemical Imbalances (Joe Rogan Interview with Johann Hari)

I’m a huge fan of the Joe Rogan Experience podcast and this is the most interesting one to date, in my opinion. He chats with Johann Hari about his new book Lost Connections, which is basically about the modern day epidemic of anxiety and depression.

Obviously, with me spending the majority of my life under the scourge of both depression and anxiety, I was transfixed by these 2 hours! (Read about how I beat anxiety here.)

Hari’s research basically agrees with what I’ve written on this blog previously that neither anxiety or depression is down to a chemical imbalance.

Mental health problems are primarily caused by LIFE – not by biology. A fascinating stat in this podcast was that 87% of people don’t like their work – the thing they spend most time doing.

To me, the correlation is obvious: we are unhappy with life and THIS causes mental health  problems.

Unfortunately, our Western society has (yet again!) got everything arse-about-face! This is a SOCIETAL problem. Not biological. Not individual.

We are not a machine with broken parts, we are a human with unmet needs. Psychological needs, such as a purpose in life and love.

We don’t have to have a culture that deadens people, controls or isolates them, which is what we currently have. It’s about reconnection. That is what will fix these epidemics.

This is one of the best podcasts I’ve ever heard and Rogan and Hari touch on issues wider than just depression and anxiety – it’s about LIFE and how most of the Western world has been doing the wrong things for decades and it’s why we now see epidemics of unhappiness, manifesting as depression, anxiety, suicide, addiction and separation.

The great thing about Hari’s research though, is that there are small cases that point to successful answers, most of which involve connection, love and compassion, rather than what is too often the case – blame, isolation and deadening with drugs.

I haven’t read the book yet but it has great ratings on Amazon. This podcast is a must-watch though.


  1. Really interesting podcast, confirms what I’d been thinking about mental health issues for a while now. Pretty messed up world we live in, right! Thank you for sharing Tim.

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