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How I Stayed Hopeful While Experiencing Depression

In 100 years, those problems will be long forgotten, but trees, forests, and sunsets will still be therapeutic to some.

Ben Blennerhassett on Unsplash

Trigger warning: This article is about how I managed to find hope while facing depression. I write about what worked for me, and by no means am I giving professional advice. If you find this article distressing, you do not have to read it: your mental health comes first. If you are struggling with your mental health, you can call the Disaster Distress Helpline (1-800-985-5990), the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255), the National Emergency number (911), or The Trevor Project for the LGBTQ+ population and youth (1-866-488-7386).

Some people link depression to a catastrophic event, such as losing a dear one, facing severe illness, or an accident. Of course, these events are dire, as they can severely impact our lives, but they represent only one side of the coin.

Depression isn’t just something you experience in the aftermath of hardship; it can also come from toxic relationships, explosive break-ups, or the loss of your support system by moving somewhere new.

How can you find hope during these challenging situations?

Even if there is no standard answer, we share a standard approach: we don’t want to experience the deep distress arising from these challenges.

Some years ago, my mental well-being was deteriorating to the point that I decided to seek a mental health professional's expert advice, who diagnosed me with mild depression. The major changes I had gone through in my life and the break-up before the diagnosis massively contributed to the mental illness I was now facing.

At the end of high school, I first moved to Germany and then to Switzerland. The culture, the people, and the language were all very different from those in my home country. I had amazing experiences and met some wonderful people, but I decided to start university back at home. I knew that coming home wouldn’t be easy, but I didn’t realize how difficult it would be until that day arrived.