Anxiety and Custard Traps

What’s better than using a metaphor to explain something…? If that metaphor is about food! This extremely relatable TEDxTalk by Neil Hughes makes light of an issue that a vast majority of people struggle with. And although mental health and laughter don’t often go hand in hand, he manages to comically weave a narrative comparing anxiety to custard. I won’t spoil the analogy, so if you want to answer the question “What do anxiety and custard have in common?” you’ll have to watch the talk for yourself.

Anxiety can take many shapes and forms and it is unique to each person suffering from it. In the talk, Hughes shares not only his own experience living with anxiety, but also some simple yet effective techniques on how to live less anxiously. Namely, some pointers on how to change the thought reactions and unhelpful mental habits that cause many people’s minds to spiral.

Comedy is oftentimes used as a coping mechanism to deal with difficult situations. As a comedian himself, Hughes seamlessly uses humour to ease the tension of discussing a tough topic and it is evident that the audience clearly connects with him.

Mental health is something that has only really gained “popular ground” in the last couple of years; that is to say, it is more widely talked about in the media and is no longer considered the taboo subject it once was. But even so, with conditions such as depression and anxiety at an all-time high, it is vital to continue that conversation, because isolation and feelings of loneliness only propagate the issue further.

By openly talking about mental health as we would our physical health, we give those who are suffering the confidence to speak out and the assurance that it is not something you have to deal with on your own.

So if you’ve ever felt anxious, sit back and have a watch, this talk might be exactly what you needed to hear.



COVER PHOTO Editorial credit: Jess Rodrigues /

Share this post

About Helena Viegas Araujo

Helena is a twenty-something year old with a passion for adventuring, drinking wine, binge-watching TV shows and curling up with a good book. Occasionally, she puts her thoughts down on paper, either with a pen or digitally.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *