Ever since I was young, I was always made to listen to motivational talks in school, be it talks from successful people or from TED Talks. Ever since I could remember, I hated these talks. Don't get me wrong, I'm sincerely happy for all those people who find success after suffering a whole lot but to me, my life doesn't fucking work that way.

I'm an eighteen-year-old girl who is currently in her final year of high school and am just trying my best to get good grades, get out of school to go into a good university and get my life going on. Life wasn't always so crappy though. When I was in middle school, I had good grades, great friends, multiple coping mechanisms and most importantly, I was happy. And of course, high school came about. I was thrown into a jungle filled with strangers who somehow already made cliques within themselves. I found myself getting more and more lost as time went by and eventually, I lost everything.

I stopped playing volleyball, something that meant dearly to me for 6 years. I lost contact with many of my friends who till this day remain close to each other. My grades were shitty and I lost myself while searching for everything else. I couldn't pick up the pieces and I couldn't put anything back together. I was a mess.

At this point in the story, you would assume that I would be sharing my turning point and how I turned everything around. How I got my life back together and how I picked myself up. The thing is, there is no turning point. Everything I just shared, it's happening to me right now. Although the right thing to do would be to say that I pushed on and I've never given up, the truth is that * I did give up*. It was the darkest period of my life, to say the least.

But here is where I shed some light into the situation and share with you guys what I did learn from everything that happened the past few months. This is a list of what we commoners can do when we are faced with the darkest moments in our lives

1. learn that giving up doesn't make a difference

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What I have learnt from the countless times that I give up doing something is that giving up doesn't make a difference, it just secures the fact that you have failed. When you give up, life continues, just because your life stops it doesn't mean that it stops for others. Giving up may be a simple way out but nothing will change from it. You will not improve, you will not become better. So just push on, maybe you'll gain something from doing that in the long run.

It's okay to make mistakes. It's okay to do something that you hadn't done because if we don't do those things we never grow

2. prioritise mental health over anything

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On that previous note, what I feel is most important on a personal level is mental health. As someone who identifies with people suffering from depression, I will say that it is incredibly hard to keep myself sane during times with high amounts of stress and during periods of times when I cannot cope. Giving up is often frowned upon but if it is necessary for you to do it in order to keep yourself sane, do it. Focus on becoming healthier mentally in order to improve and feel better physically. Only when you accept yourself mentally will you be able to do better in whatever you choose to pursue. Don't hate yourself for doing certain things, accept that you have already chosen to do it and go on from there.

You, yourself as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and attention.

3. learn to be happy alone

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What I've learnt is that sometimes being alone can be extremely therapeutic. Whenever I'm stressed, I find myself disconnecting from the world and locking myself inside my room. As unhealthy as this may be, the periods of time when I'm alone has given me the opportunity and the courage, to be honest with myself. Being alone gives you the freedom to be true to yourself. You aren't bounded by the expectations of society and you don't have to worry about showing your raw emotions.

The best part about being alone is that you really don't have to answer to anybody. You do what you want.

4. speak up

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Speaking up about our problems can be one of the best ways to drag ourselves out of the hole we dug and buried ourselves in. Trust me when I say I know that it is incredibly hard to talk to a friend - even if she or he is extremely trusted- about my own problems. The haunting feeling of guilt that I may be a burden to my friends who may very well be having their own problems will never subside. If it works for you, speak to someone about your problems, talk it out. If it doesn't work, what I find to be incessantly helpful is writing. I'm not a consistent writer but what I know is that for a very long time, writing has been the way I used to cope with my emotions.

Let your tongue speak what your heart thinks.

5. it's ok to cry

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Many people feel that crying is a waste of time and that crying does not solve our problems. To me, crying is not a sign of weakness, crying is a huge part of how I learn to cope with my emotions. In many of our lives, we are faced with difficult situations that overwhelm us with emotions. Crying stops us from doing dumb shit when being overwhelmed and it empties our minds from our problems at least for that period of time. Being able to let yourself go and cry means that you are able to let go of the chains that are preventing you from thinking and rationalise properly. After crying, you will learn how to breathe.

People cry not because they're weak, it's because they've been strong for too long.

For most of us, our lives do not end up having a turning point. Many of us don't get the opportunity to turn our lives from bad to good. A lot of times, we fall into a pit and are unable to climb back up. What I can say is that if you are at your darkest point in life, life cannot get darker than that. You may still be failing, you may never succeed but always remind yourself that you've already fallen to the darkest point once, there is literally nothing to lose from doing anything else. You can slowly take your time to climb out of the hole you've fallen into, adapt to your situation and even if you don't ever get out, you will never fall deeper than the original mess you were dropped into.

Healing doesn't mean the damage never existed, it just means that the damage no longer controls our lives

Thank you for reading! I know this article is way more dampening and depressing than any of my other articles but this is me in my truest form and I genuinely hope this helps at least one person out there.

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