Devin Halladay

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Lessons Learned

You can't always have what you need.

I've learned a few important lessons this summer that I thought I'd share—mostly for myself, but hopefully they will help you, too.

  1. There will always be people who will do shitty things to you. Sometimes those people will be the people who are closest to you, sometimes they will be strangers. No matter who they are, there will always be more shit for you to deal with. That's life. But life does go on.
  2. Depression is the worst thing. Ever. Hands-down. I have felt a misery and a helplessness that I can't describe in words. It hurts, and you will feel that pain deeply in ever inch of your body and mind. But you can get through it. Keep people you like close to you, keep yourself busy, and don't get caught in thought traps. Just stay alive.
  3. If you need to play with fire, play with fire. You may get burned, you may burn all your bridges, but in the end you'll learn how to play with fire more safely the next time around.
  4. Take risks. Overload yourself with work if that's what you need to do. Turn down job offers because you think something better will come along. Tell people the truth, even if the truth is too painful to say aloud. And, most importantly, tell yourself the truth.
  5. You can't always have what you want.
  6. You can't always have what you need.
  7. Life is overwhelming, but you need to force yourself to take things a day at a time. Don't bundle days together, because if you do you will forget that eventually your problems and pain will fade and make way for new problems and pain.
  8. Misery is wasted on the miserable.
  9. You need to let go. Move on.
  10. Sometimes you need to just open the floodgates and let your emotions and thoughts consume you if only for a little while.
  11. Just because you mean everything you say doesn't mean everyone else means what they say.
  12. It's not your fault.
  13. You do not have to be Ozymandias.
  14. Writing is the most important thing you can do. You have a gift; use it.
  15. The more creative you are, the more predisposed you are to depression and anxiety disorders. You view the world differently than everyone else, which means you see what is wrong with the world and that makes you vulnerable. Be strong, and don't lose faith.

Published on Tuesday 25 August 2015

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