Author: Matt Haig
|The Comfort Book (2021) by Matt Haig is a book in which he offers his personal experiences and philosophies on how to get through periods of feeling anxious, depressed, or burned out. Haig uses unconventional strategies for developing a sense of self-worth and looking after your mental health in The Comfort Book.|
The true challenge we face is to look at ourselves and the world honestly. To see what wounds there are, so we help heal them. Not to flinch. Not to spend our life so wrapped in denial and trying to avoid pain. Not to avoid the feelings. As Buddhist writer Pema Chödrön put it, ‘the most fundamental harm we can do to ourselves, is to remain ignorant by not having the courage and the respect to look at ourselves honestly and gently. Healing means to live in the raw.The comfort book” by Matt Haig
Depression can affect anyone whether they are weak or strong but when it shows up it can feel like a sucker punch to the gut and it doesn’t always look like depression. It doesn’t show up in the form of tears and sadness. People think that they’ll never get happy again because finding light at the end of the tunnel isn’t easy. People end up sacrificing their lives when they reach the bottom point.
Matt Haig knows tho very well since he battled with depression and he was at such a low point in this life that he tried to jump from the cliff. Want to know how he stopped himself and what gave him hope to keep going? This is what you’ll learn in ‘The Comfort Book’.
The Comfort Book Key Points
Don’t put your trust in your brain when you’re depressed
Being depressed sometimes feels like being stuck in the middle of the ocean, striving not to drown, it feels as if there is no get away from the condition. That’s the phase when your brain starts flooding with negative thoughts but you need to realize not to trust all of the thoughts that come to mind. It can make life seem like a dark and hopeless place. Depression is just a part of who you are but it doesn’t define you – you are worth more than that.
Depression can make you feel like you are nothing, but you are not your depression.
It’s important to remember that life is full of ups and downs. It’s not all bad, even when it feels like it is. There is always hope for a better tomorrow.
Get hope from someone else when you feel low
It’s nearly too impossible to trust yourself when you are getting through tough times that you’ll ever be happy again. But you can borrow some hope by learning about others’ lives.
Whenever you feel stuck at some point and lose your faith, just look up some inspirational stories from people who have also experienced adversity. If we take a look at Maya Angelou, who is now one of the world’s best activists and writers, who survived an abusive childhood. We came to know that “We can’t control what happens to us, we can control how we react to things that happen – that’s what will shape our future”.
You can also find your way to survive and live a beautiful and meaningful life afterward by taking inspiration, faith, and energy from the stories of people.
Learn the art of saying ‘NO’
I’m too busy to have coffee with you right now…”
“I have to finish this project before I can help you with your question…”
“I have 20 emails to answer, so I need to focus on them…”
” I can’t attend the party, I’m not interested…”
If these sentences sound uncomfortable coming out of your mouth, they should. Saying no is a sign of professional maturity. Instead of saying “No” though, you default to “Yes” because you are always working hard and taking on as much as possible, but then you end up feeling resentment toward your actions instead of motivation.
Embrace your imperfection
Being yourself and being yourself means that you can be messy, you can be emotional and cry at stupid things. But the most important thing is to be true to yourself and speak your mind every second. You are valuable exactly the way you are. You are not going to change your personality, you don’t need to become someone else to put your best self forward. What you are is an endearing human being, and that’s perfect.
Write it all down
As long as you are honest with yourself, you’ll find writing a very effective way to release the emotions and feelings that you have pent inside. It can help you to feel relaxed and stress-free. Writing down things helps you to understand yourself better and become more aware of your emotions. You can write about anything that is bothering you, but it is best to start with something small and then move on to bigger issues.
Writing is also important to remember all the good and bad things too. Like if you find something motivational, you can write it down in your diary to feel motivated or If you’re going through tough times, writing it down will help you remember that It’ll get better one day.
Listen to music
Music is magic. It can bring you to the past or remind you of someone. If you want to feel good, listen to music. Music is a universal language that everyone can understand. When you’re feeling down, turn on some music because it has the power to lift your spirits and put you in a better mood.
So, make sure to put some music on whenever you need to feel relaxed.
Cultivate curiosity and seek out wonder
Do you know what is the enemy of anxiety? It’s curiosity!!
The reason is that curiosity requires a certain amount of mental energy, and anxiety uses up the same resource. When you start wondering the world, you become fascinated by wonders instead of stating in the dark room of your mind. Wonder and pleasure is the antidote of anxiety or depression. As to stare on the sky, on the stars won’t make you out from your depression but it can divert your mind towards wonder. Experience the different wonderful things everg daily. Study the mountains, or spend some time in nature. Gather those small moments of wonder to make yourself fascinated again and again.
Who would I recommend ‘The comfort book’ to?
Anyone who is looking for unconventional strategies to deal with anxiety, depression and any mental health issues.