Reasons to Stay Alive – Matt Haig

I came across this book after reading about it in an article.  I can’t remember exactly what article it was but I seem to remember it being in Psychologies Magazine in a column by Sally Brampton, who sadly died earlier this year.

Reasons to Stay Alive is a refreshingly honest and raw account of Matt Haig’s struggle with mental illness.  Written in a humorous fashion, that does not detract from the seriousness of the illness, Haig manages to keep it upbeat in a book that could easily have featured on the more morose.

Whilst not a traditional self-help book, if you have ever suffered from depression or panic attacks in particular, you will recognise something of yourself in this book.  It’s true that mental illness is different for each person but there are some things that it has in common.

This book made me laugh out loud in places (Things you think during your 1000th panic attack), not at the condition but in the wry fashion in which Haig tells it.

Definitely worth a read, Haig tells readers that you can get better and you will find a way that works for you.  For him it was the love of those people around him, running, yoga and literature but the recovery is as individual as the illness.  What works for one may not work for another.

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