BOOKS | This Book Could Very Much Save Your Life

Reasons To Stay Alive Book Matt Haig

Reasons To Stay Alive Book Matt Haig

Hello lovelies!

This post has been in my little brain for quite a fair few months, but I guess I just haven’t felt ready to post this yet. . . until now.

This is a recommendation from me to you, that this book really is incredible. It is called “Reasons To Stay Alive” by Matt Haig. I probably wouldn’t write this, nor open up so much in this post if I didn’t think that this book was extremely excellent and helpful.

I admit, the name of the book sounds rather morbid, but it really is quite the opposite actually. It talks about a sensitive topic in a light hearted manner, providing hope for anyone suffering from depression or any similar issues.

I am a strong believer in promoting positivity when it comes down to mental health. At the end of the day, I truly think that every single person on this planet will experience problems with mental health at some point in their life, whether it is themselves or a loved one. It is all about individual coping mechanisms

In my own personal experience, I worry about things. A lot. And the worries often pretty much always link back to me dying. People often are like ahhh well everyone worries about dying Kayleigh! Yes you would be correct there. But it is when those ‘worries’ literally take over your life. With the majority of the thoughts that you have, e v e r y single minute of e v e r y single day causing you distress, that it becomes an issue. Like I said, individual coping mechanisms, some people naturally cope better than others. 

I read this book a good few months ago now and a particular sentence to this day STILL stands out to me, because it was exactly how I felt towards the start of 2014.

“I wanted to be dead. No. That’s not quite right. I didn’t want to be dead. I just didn’t want to be alive. Death was something that scared me. And death only happens to people who have been living” (Matt Haig) 

It was kind of the feeling that if I crossed the road, and was hit by a car it just wouldn’t matter, obviously it would, but you get my point. The intrusive thoughts were just all too much, that I just wasn’t enjoying life anymore. (Just to clarify, I never actually wanted to die, like the quote above says, that is the thing I feared the most!) 

My nan had just passed away and my mental health was rapidly spiralling out of control. I miss her so much 🙁 I used to talk to her about things in my mind that I wouldn’t talk to other people about. Saying that, having this blog really does help. Losing someone close to you is probably one of the hardest things you ever go through, which really didn’t help my already fragile mind set. I found it really hard to get out of bed at this point in my life, let alone complete 2nd year of University. But you know what. I DID IT,  I got a 2.1 in 2nd year, and I would have loved to have had this book by my side.

I am watching Toy Story 2 whilst writing this, what I would give to be a child again with my only worry being how I’ve lost the nose for my Mr Potato Head toy.

Reasons To Stay Alive Book Matt Haig

Here is just a quick overview of my thoughts at the time, all irrational of course. It is like you have a bully mocking you inside your head 24/7. I always felt so so responsible for all my actions….

Oh you want a packet of crisps? Well if you don’t wash your hands before you eat those you are going to get ‘x’ disease and then die. 

Did you drop your fork on the floor? You don’t know do you? Maybe ask one of your friends if they saw you drop it. They said you didn’t drop it, but are they just trying to please you? You better go and wash it again, you don’t know what is on your student floor. 

Theres blood on your floor… you better bleach that up in case it isn’t yours, it could harm you. And if it is yours it still could harm your family… That bleach you just used, it says to use it in a well ventilated area, and wash off after 5 mins. You’ve left it for an hour, you have now damaged your lungs and will die. (This one was so horribly sad, my dad caught me on the floor crying over this, and I hadn’t told him about any of my thoughts, love you dad)

Did you just wash your hands? You can’t remember can you? You better wash them again to be sure, otherwise you are going to get ‘x’ disease and then die. 

My tummy really hurts… Is there something terribly wrong? What if it’s cancer? What if I’m pregnant? You’re going to die. 

Was your lipstick sealed? Did you check? What if it wasn’t? Someone could have used it and it could have all sorts all over it… You should probably never use it again in case.  

As you can see the thoughts really are extremely exhausting, and those are just a minority of the ones that go flying round my brain each day. Having these thoughts make you feel sad. REALLY sad. They do say anxiety and depression go hand in hand. 

I still have these thoughts, all the time, I have recently just begun to learn how to manage them slightly. Some days are more successful than others, and with a little bit of CBT help I know that I am going to beat OCD. *Big muscles emoji* *Clapping emoji* I just know if Matt’s book had existed during my darker times, that life would have been easier. It is like having your own little special friend guiding you through life, holding your hand, reassuring you and telling you everything will be okay. Because everything will be okay.

Reasons To Stay Alive Book Matt Haig

The talented Matt Haig has written a book that I really do think should be prescribed out to people. It’s like a dose of therapy sessions compacted in 259 pages. As a sufferer of depression, who one day was very close to killing himself. He gives you hope and reminds you that life is special and each day is beautiful. Split into easy to manage chapters, the content is just great. You even laugh sometimes… which is a delightful human response. 

My favourite chapter is probably Reasons To Stay Alive, which includes 10 reasons. I am going to share 3 with you now, just to give you a flavour, plus I don’t think I could describe the book any better myself. (Hope Matt doesn’t mind…)

1) You hate yourself. That is because you are sensitive. Pretty much every human could find a reason to hate themselves if they thought about it as much as you did. We’re all total bastards, us humans, but also totally wonderful. (Matt Haig)

2) Nothing lasts for ever. This pain won’t last. The pain tells you it will last. Pain lies. Ignore it. Pain is a dept paid off with time. (Matt Haig)

3) You will one day experience joy that matches this pain. You will cry euphoric tears at the Beach Boys, you will stare down at a baby’s face as she lies asleep in your lap, you will make great friends, you will eat delicious foods you haven’t tried yet, you will be able to look at a view from a high place and not assess the likelihood of dying from falling. There are books you haven’t read yet that will enrich you, films you will watch while eating extra – large buckets of popcorn, and you will dance and laugh and have sex and go for runs by the river and have late-night conversations and laugh until it hurts. Life is waiting for you. You might be stuck here for a while, but the world isn’t going anywhere. Hang on in there if you can. Life is always worth it. (Matt Haig)

Now if that doesn’t give you hope, motivation, and fill you with great feelings and smiles then I don’t know what will. But just that little section makes me want to read the book again x1000 

Hope you enjoyed this post lovelies. I couldn’t recommend this book more, even if you don’t need it now. For only £6.99 for a hardback or £5.70 on a kindle I don’t know what you are waiting for… I think it is an excellent one to have on the shelf whenever you or a loved one may need it. It could save your life. You are not alone.

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  1. September 20, 2015 / 8:39 am

    Love this post Kayleigh. Feels like I know you even more now. Totally relate. And I'm so sorry to hear you lost your nan too. It's so weird, we're living parallel lives in some ways. I'd like to say things get easier but I've learned the best thing to do is to take one day at a time. I'm always hear if you want to chat. I promise I won't think anything you say is crazy, believe me, I've got my own version of 'crazy' going on in my own head so I really do get it. Thankyou for opening up and sharing such a wonderful and inspiring post lovely xx

  2. September 20, 2015 / 9:53 am

    Such a fantastic and important post Kayleigh, thank you for sharing! I'd heard so many amazing things about this book but having read a lot of other books on the same topic, I wasn't convinced that it wouldn't be patronising or just tell you to be positive or snap out of it. I finally plucked up the courage to buy it about 4 months ago and I'm reading it very slowly as there are bits of it that I find quite upsetting and triggering, but so far I'm really enjoying it and it's wonderfully written, understanding, honest, not belittling, but most importantly, really does genuinely help. Glad you enjoyed it and found it so helpful too!


  3. September 20, 2015 / 11:58 am

    I think me and you have the same thought process, linking almost everything to death. So much that is does consume my daily life. Im sure my boyfriend is sick of me panicking about the smallest of things. I'm 100% buying this book (searching on amazon rn)

    So sorry to hear about your nan, I welled up a bit when I read that, I lost my mum when I was 9 and now as an adult I don't know if I'd be able to cope without my Grandma. xxx

  4. September 20, 2015 / 12:10 pm

    Amazing post. You have been so brutally honest and I respect that so much. Wish I could hug you! You are amazing. This book sounds like a brilliant recommendations, and I've been meaning to read it for a while. It sounds like we all need this book on our shelves really. 🙂

  5. September 20, 2015 / 1:32 pm

    Brilliant post girly. Like you, my mental health was out of control after losing my grandma and I felt like I was never going to get out of it. Sending lots of hugs and love! This book sounds like a must, I love self help books like this as I find them very motivating, if not making me feel less alone. I'll definitely be checking it out. Thank you for this post, Kayleigh. xx

    Kathryn | Chapters of Kat

  6. September 20, 2015 / 3:01 pm

    Lovely post girl. I really struggle with mental health but more on the anxiety side – I really need a book like this to read because I've had the worst year ever and struggling to get out of a rut really. Sending lots of love to you for what you've been through, hope you feel a lot better after reading the book and writing the post.

    Robyn xx

  7. September 20, 2015 / 3:13 pm

    I highly commend you for writing this post Kayleigh, it seems like something I need to get better. This is such an informative and lovely written post that I'm hoping will help a lot of people. Hope you are okay and will get even better – thank you again for this.

    Tasha xx

  8. September 20, 2015 / 9:37 pm

    You were so brave to write this, I know mental illness can be scary and hard to talk about. I suffer with depression throughout my younger teenage years and even though the doctors now class me as 'cured', I still have days were I don't want to get out of bed.

    This book sounds wonderful, i will order it in the morning as I think it'll help me a lot. Thank you for recommending.

    All the best Hun xxxx xxxx

  9. September 20, 2015 / 10:51 pm

    Thank you so much for recommending this book! I have the exact same anxiety as you do. I'm guilty of re-washing silverware before I use them, constantly washing my hands before eating, and worrying about cleaning products like bleach. I can really relate to you on that level. I give you lots of credit for discussing this topic on your blog. I'm sure it wasn't easy! Anyway, this book sounds like it will help me out a lot. I'll check it out

    Meet Me in Midtown

  10. September 21, 2015 / 6:50 am

    Aw Kayleigh I couldn't get through point 3 of Matt's without welling up a bit – it's so beautifully written! Well done for posting this as it couldn't have been easy but hopefully a lot of people will read and relate to it and know that it's all going to be okay xx

    Laura | Loved By Laura

  11. September 21, 2015 / 2:27 pm

    This sounds incredible – there are times in my life when I could really have done with this. Sometimes it can be hard to think of these things yourself, so having them all there in a book ready and waiting for you would be perfect. I can definitely believe that this might genuinely save a life.
    Jennifer x
    Ginevrella | Lifestyle Blog

  12. September 21, 2015 / 2:39 pm

    I honestly think us humans are more similar than we all like to believe. We all have the same emotions that we go through, good and bad and your right, it just how you cope with it. Your life if yours to live however you want and if you want a day to lay in bed and feel sad then so be it.

    I can tell your going to be just fine and I can feel the strength and courage you have just by reading this :)) xxxx


  13. September 24, 2015 / 9:11 am

    I've had this on my Amazon Wish list for a while and after reading this it might have to be the next book I purchase. It's great that it's helped you so much and I really hope it can get me through some of my tough times too.


  14. September 27, 2015 / 9:38 am

    I've heard a lot about this book and how helpful it is to those suffering from any sort of mental illness. I'm so glad that it really spoke to you and I'm so sorry to hear about your nan 🙁 It's great that a book like this has gained a fair about of popularity because they often don't even though these are the books people really need! Thank you for sharing 🙂

    Laura @ What's Hot?

  15. October 1, 2015 / 7:21 am

    I've recovered from Anorexia so I read this book afterwards because I've now graduated in Psychology, and I absolutely loved it. It's for everyone, not just people with mental illnesses and that's what I love about it. It's so warming and gives you such a great perspective on life. Such a beautifully written book (and blog post!) xx

    Sam // Samantha Betteridge

  16. November 25, 2015 / 5:47 pm

    Well thank YOU for giving me another book to add to my Christmas list. It sounds like this one really kicks ass too! I can barely read number three without tears in my eyes already…must be my time of the month aha.

    What a beaut, lovely and inspiring post, Kayleigh. Rocking it. You are strong little pumpkin, girl.


  17. July 19, 2016 / 9:59 pm

    Great post! I near brought this book a few months back but then I didn't however after reading this I'm off to order one! 😀

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