Reasons to Stay Alive

11541000_10153423694874645_8254717793441426979_n“Reasons to Stay Alive” by Matt Haig
(First publication: 2015 / This edition: Canongate Books 2015)
with Starbucks (and a smiley face! How fitting!) at the Hong Kong International Airport

You need to feel life’s terror to feel its wonder. (p.228)

This is one of my favorite books.

I have so many favorites actually, so I’ll probably be saying that in so many posts. (haha)

So. I ordered this book from Book Depository after reading “The Humans” by Matt Haig (my review here)—the same author—and feeling that I can relate so much and learn so much from him.

After I finished and fell in love with “The Humans”, I looked up and read more about the author. Matt Haig has suffered through severe depression and almost committed suicide when he was 24. In this book, briefly, he talks about when he started feeling off to how he was able to “recover”.

I wanted to read this book because
1) I have gone through periods of depression.
2) I know some good friends of mine are going through depression.
3). I believe that depression is something that everyone goes through at some point in their lives, whether they actually realize it and accept it or not. It’s important to know how to deal with it when you’re going through it yourself, but also how to help those around you that are maybe not feeling their best.

It’s an issue that should never be taken lightly. It’s not something that you should brush off and stick a smile on your face, to show others that you are actually the happiest, most carefree person in the world. It’s not something that you can dismiss and underestimate when someone close to you is feeling down. It’s not something that just a trip to the beach or a trip to the psychiatrist will make it go away. It’s not something that’s easy to “get over”.

I’m no expert on the matter. I don’t know what is the right “treatment” or the right way to meditate, or even the right words to say. I’ve Googled articles and I’ve tried following “How-To’s”, but nothing has been helpful as this book.

It is a light, insightful, fun read on a heavy subject. It’s kind of like a memoir. It’s not religious and not too “meditate/zen/cleanse/detox/SMILE!” so it can apply to everyone. Even if you’re not going through depression right now, I still recommend you read this. It will prepare you for when you do feel down, and will also make you a better companion to those that are going through rough times.

Here are some of my favorite lines from the book:

I think life always provides reasons to not die, if we listen hard enough. Those reasons can stem from the past—the people who raised us, maybe, or friends or lovers—or from the future—the possibilities we would be switching off.
And so I kept living. (p.21)

And the cloud can’t exist without the sky, but the sky can exist without the cloud. (p.181)

I want life.
I want to read it and write it and feel it and live it.
I want, for as much of the time as possible in this blink-of-an-eye existence we have, to feel all that can be felt. (p.229)

And the last one…click here 🙂


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