Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig

Title: Reasons to Stay Alive
Author: Matt Haig
Genre: Biography
Rating: 5/5

Matt Haig is publicly open about his journey with depression. Many of his other pieces of work also touch on the matter. His purpose for writing this biography was to help others overcome this illness like he has. In Reasons to Stay Alive, you will hear him recount some of his darkest moments. His main message is that there is always light at the end of the tunnel and once you make it through one, you can make it through them all.

“People with mental illnesses aren’t wrapped up in themselves because they are intrinsically any more selfish than other people. Of course not. They are just feeling things that can’t be ignored. Things that point the arrows inward.”

Matt Haig’s biography is both inspiring and educational. Depression is a beast and it touches nearly everyone’s lives, whether directly or indirectly. Those of us who experience it first hand can relate to a lot of the thoughts and emotions that Haig talks about. It gives a sense of comoradore knowing you’re not the only one having to sometimes plaster a smile on your face for the benefit of others. Reasons to Stay Alive is also a great tool for those of you who want to have a better understanding of what your depressed loved ones might be going through. Having a clearer understanding of what they are feeling will allow you to better help them. 

“There is no standard normal. Normal is subjective. There are seven billion versions of normal on this planet.”

The book itself is really short. I chose to listen to the audiobook version and I got through it within a few hours. Like I mentioned above, I think this book is great for both people who have depression and also those who know someone with it. Knowledge is a powerful thing as is hope. 

“Wherever you are, at any moment, try and find something beautiful. A face, a line out of a poem, the clouds out of a window, some graffiti, a wind farm. Beauty cleans the mind.”

The author does talk about suicide quite vividly as the title suggests so be prepared. It can be scary seeing those thoughts on paper, but remember that the true purpose of the book is to remind us all that there are endless reasons to stay alive.

“How to stop time: kiss.
How to travel in time: read.
How to escape time: music.
How to feel time: write.
How to release time: breathe.”

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