Author and meditation teacher Conor Creighton discusses toxic masculinity and how it can foster emotional repression, curb individuality and lead to mental health issues. Listen back to You OK's Pieta House Special above.

We all conform to certain social norms every day, like saying "I'm sorry" if you accidentally bump into someone or not showing up to work in your pyjamas – although the last year has tested that one a bit – but we also experience social or cultural codes based on our gender, ethnicity, sexuality and these can become so restrictive that we end up trapped by them.

We’ve all heard the term toxic masculinity which essentially refers to a series of traits that we characterise as stereotypically male – but these actually foster emotional repression, curb individuality and as a result can lead to mental health problems like depression.

Conor Creighton has been on his own journey with this – from aggression on the football pitch and reporting from war zones, he is now a meditation teacher and author and someone with a real passion for dismantling these constructs that hold us all back from expressing our true nature.

You can find How To Talk To Me(n): A Manual for Men by Conor Creighton and Cameron Hassard, for free, at

Darkness Into Light, proudly supported by Electric Ireland, takes place on Saturday 8th May, you can still sign up at

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health issues at the moment, you can call Pieta’s crisis line at 1800 247 247 or text HELP to 51444. Pieta’s services can be accessed for free and without referral.