Dr. Colman Noctor

Psychotherapist, Assistant Professor of Mental Health & Best-selling Author

why book colman?

  • Author of the ‘4-7 Zone’, an easy and effective way to live a balanced life
  • Host of the Asking for a Parent podcast and Columnist for Irish Examiner
  • Author of ‘Cop On: What it is and Why Your Child Needs it to Thrive and Survive in Today’s World’


Psychotherapist Dr. Colman Noctor combines a busy clinical practice with a rapidly expanding role as a popular author, broadcaster and mental health speaker whose refreshingly no-nonsense approach, wry humour and real-world experience are earning him warm praise from clients and audiences alike.

At the heart of his work is the belief that before you address a psychological or emotional issue, you first need to understand it. In both his clinical practice and his speaking work, his philosophy is to provide simple solutions to complex mental health problems, help audiences to better understand the origin of their distress and then provide practical solutions to manage it.

Dr. Noctor became interested in child and teenage mental health after a period spent working as a psychiatric nurse in the UK. He specialised in working with children and adolescents as soon as he qualified, and went on to work at the renowned Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital and at the Royal Edinburgh hospital before returning to Ireland in 2003 to train in Psychoanalytic and Adolescent Psychotherapy at Trinity College Dublin.

He first attracted attention for his public speaking as a popular and entertaining lecturer in UCD, and today his enthusiasm and signature straight-talking style are winning over audiences at major conferences and events in Ireland and across Europe.

Being very much an ‘early adopter’ himself, Dr. Noctor is particularly interested in the impact of technology on our mental health – on things such as childhood development, wellbeing and relationships, but also on our work lives. Today his reputation as an engaging speaker on these and other topics is growing fast and he has facilitated seminars for many of the top corporate organisations in Ireland, with unanimously positive feedback from clients including IBEC, Laya Life, Smurfitt Kappa, Davy Stockbrokers, VHI and Hewlett Packard.

He also has a hugely popular parenting column in The Examiner, has written a best-selling book (Cop On, Gill Books 2015) and is the resident parenting expert on Ray Darcy’s popular Radio One afternoon show.  During the pandemic, he took a leap into podcasting; his podcast Asking for a Parent has had tens of thousands of downloads to date and is rated 4.9 out of 5 on Apples.  Most recently, in April 2023, he published a new book called The 4-7 Zone, all about how to find balance in a world of extremes.

He now also works at SETU Waterford alongside his many speaking engagements.


‘The 4-7 Zone’

The Value Of Moderation In A World Of Extremes

In this talk based on his new book, The 4-7 Zone, published in April 2023, Dr. Colman Noctor helps audiences to find balance in a world where we are often forced into extremes of behaviour, views and values. In his own work, Colman has seen that most people are either doing too much of something, too little of something, or a combination of both. They are either 1-3 or 8-10, on a scale of 1-10. However, the 4-7 Zone is where we are mentally safest. Life will inevitably push us into the 1-3 and 8-10 zones but the key is finding our way out of those and not staying there too long.
Using examples, academic learnings and professional insights, in this talk Colman will equip the audience with tools to help them find balance. You will:

  • Gain a deeper understanding of why extremes are not beneficial for your mental health
  • Learn how to identify your equilibrium – it will be different for everyone.
  • Be given a mental Health Checklist – 7 considerations to measure your mental health
  • Learn about the Resilience Myth
  • Understand how the 4-7 Zone can be used to navigate work-life balance, intimate relationships, anxiety, parenting, diet/sleep, exercise and technology.

Creating And Championing A Mentally Healthy Workplace Culture

In a world of excess, stress expectation and demand are perfect recipes for staff burnout.
In order to minimise the incidence of Mental Health related absenteeism, companies need to invest in cultures that protect their employee’s mental health and support a more inclusive and fulfilling working culture.

Gratification And Fulfilment

With so much emphasis on gratification, we need to move towards recognising the importance of fulfilment. This talk will look at ways companies can meaningfully engage with their teams to enhance wellbeing, inclusivity and integrated value systems.

Hybrid Working

Understanding And Managing Anxiety Together

With the way the world has been upended in the last two years we are trying to find new ways of working that meet the needs of the companies and the desire of the employees. This balance is hard to strike but this talk will explore practical ways in which companies can accommodate the needs of the workforce in creative ways and ensure ongoing levels of productivity, collegiality and engagement.

The Impact Of Technology On Family Life

This talk explores the way technology has changed the landscape of family life. With the evolution of technological communication it has changed the ways we work, communicate and relate. This workshop will explore ways in which we can create better relationships with technology to benefit our children, our families and ourselves.

Reboarding Our New Work Lives In A Post Covid World

As we emerge from working from home to returning in some hybrid capacity to the workplace, how do we navigate the competing expectations, desires and anxieties as we return to the new way of working.

Understanding Child Behaviour

In order to best manage any situation it is important to understand the origin, purpose and function of the behaviour, This seminar explains how children and teenagers lack the language skills to communicate how they feel which results in a series of difficult behaviours. This seminar will aim to decipher the meaning behind childhood behaviours and how best to respond to them.

Maintaining Mental Well-Being In An Era Of Stress And Anxiety

In an era where we wear busyness as a badge of honour and boundaries around work/ life balance are blurred. This seminar explores the origins of anxiety and the symptoms of burnout and how we can protect each other’s wellbeing by addressing the culture of organisations

Impact Of Technology On Mental Health

As much of our working world has moved into the virtual space, we need to be aware of benefits and pitfalls of online and remote working. Where every possible convenience is introduced, there is a risk of something less visible being lost and with more freedom comes less boundaries. This talk will explore how we can maintain a healthy relationship with technology that protects the user and encourages us all to be critical consumers of smart technologies.

Colman Noctor, Dr.





“Just a note to say thank you for the session yesterday.  The feedback we have received before we run our satisfaction survey has been exceptionally positive.  Despite feeling the third lockdown yourself, you have relieved the stress and anxiety of a lot of staff which is a marvellous gift to give.”

Department of Social Protection

“Just another note to tell you how well received your talk was on Wednesday. I had many colleagues saying it was the best talk they have attended throughout their careers. Such positive feedback from everyone. Thanks a million Colman for another excellent session. I hope to have you back at the office in the future for another talk.”

Smurfit Kappa

“We have had fantastic feedback from participants who attended on the evening and want to thank him sincerely for his warm, reassuring, compassionate and inspiring talk.”

National Parents Council