When we are in a valley, depressed, anxious, or feeling hopeless, it can seem that things will never improve again. It feels as though that destroyed self-image and total lack of motivation is a permanent state.


Truly, it's a sense of total doom that arises from a mixture of both internal and external circumstances.

But we can get out of there. We can leave that place. People have been there and ascended. It's possible to resurface and rediscover joy, to access feelings of pride and gratitude that seemed gone forever when down in the valley.

What pulls a person out of the hole, however, is variable. Different things work for different people. Some need interpersonal connection and love. Others need to forget themselves in an ongoing task or action.

However it happens for people, their stories remind how entirely possible it is to get back in the saddle.

panicdotjpg asked, "What broke you out of your lowest point in life?"

Externalize 

"Getting a job, interestingly enough."

"I actually had something to do during the day instead of being stuck at home missing my recently-passed grandfather and listening to my parents' marriage implode."

"Being forced to interact with people also made me more assertive and gave me responsibilities."

-- TheMidnightScorpion

Fake it til You Make it

"Theater."

"I was in an abusive relationship. I played a character who's husband was plotting to kill her. I kept on getting compliments on how well I played the part of the terrified battered woman. The week before we opened I left him and never looked back."

"If my character could survive and find happiness than so could I."

-- BAUIntern

Love Helps

"I was saved by a girl I was really crazy about. She was outside of all the problems going on and was a beacon of light and hope in the disaster that was my world."

"I started building a life with her in another state and could escape the horrors I was dealing with and go visit her whenever I could afford the plane fare."

"She kept me going, gave me hope, and ultimately helped rebuild our world together."

-- LovesMeSomeRedhead

Nurturing Forces

"My fiance and my mom. I'd been running dead end fast food and living in my own filth after my ex destroyed me emotionally and I failed out of college."

"I met my fiance on line and we started talking. She kept going out her way to keep me company when I was lonely and online playing games together."

"Meanwhile my mom pushed me to try a budget program for kids who didn't go to/finish college to get IT training and job skills to be more hireable."

"It's been 4 years now. Engages. Working a high end job. I owe it all to the 2 best women in my life."

"I am a lucky man"

-- CaptainOptimail

Forget Yourself

"Had a child. I never even realized I was at my lowest point. I was a night shift worker at taco bell after failing out of college."

"Up to my ears in debt with no prospects in sight and the worst part was I had grown to accept that I would be struggling to pay rent, going without health care, and living off of Ramen for the foreseeable future."

"I would have even said I was happy."

"Then I found out I had a kid and suddenly I knew that I had nothing to offer. I wouldn't be able to provide a stable home, Healthcare, or any of the costly advantages a kid can get in this country. 6 months later I was in a bus headed for basic training."

"18 years later he is getting ready to go to college and I have always been able to keep a stable place for him to come to when things get too stressful."

-- shroom2021

From Someone Who's Been There

"I was recovering from a life changing injury and was taking my limitations a bit hard. I met a guy my age that was confined to a wheel chair, he spoke with me and was so positive."

"He had it worse than me and had that kind of outlook. I had no right to be a stick in the mud, I chose to accept my situation and live positively."

-- AdmiralTallywacker

Neurochemical Interventions

"Magic mushrooms. I was at my heaviest weight and a mushroom trip gave me the push I needed to start losing weight and being healthier."

"I'm still not where I want to be with my weight, but I'm going in the right direction"

-- askmeabiutlife

Other Neurochemical Interventions

"Medication. I can't stress enough how much of a difference I've felt and experienced after starting anti depressants. The fog has lifted and I've never been this level headed and confident. I've struggled my whole life and have experienced some very very low points."

"Finally in my 30s I decided to look I to meds and it really helped."

"There is definitely something to be said for diet and exercise and getting outdoors, but failing that, talk to your doc."

-- ironmcheaddesk

Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.

People Describe The Worst Thing They've Ever Done Without Any Regrets
Bastian Pudill on Unsplash
We've all committed our share of wrongs in life that we are apologetic for.
Keep reading... Show less
People Confess Which Pieces Of Life Advice Can F**k Right Off
Daniel Herron on Unsplash

When a person sees someone they care about going through a struggle or crisis, their instinct is to uplift them with positive advice.

Keep reading... Show less

Kids start going to school from the age of five, and for the most part, they spend more time at school than at home. Because of that, teachers can become very important figures in the lives of their students.

Some students don't have the best home lives. Some keep it to themselves, but others confide in their teachers.

Curious about various situations, Redditor Delicious_Mastodon83 asked:

"teachers of reddit what is the saddest thing you found out about a student?"
Keep reading... Show less
People Divulge What Depression Really Feels Like To Them
Photo by Warren Wong on Unsplash

TRIGGER WARNING: This article contains sensitive content about depression and mental health.

As the stigma around mental health lessens (however slowly), people are more forthcoming about the problems they are facing. One of the most common mental health issues is depression.

Depression can affect many different types of people. Factors such as gender, race, nationality, and even age have no bearing on whether someone suffers from depression or not.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), globally, "...an estimated 3.8% of the population affected, including 5.0% among adults and 5.7% among adults older than 60 years..."

Depression displays in certain patterns, such as mood changes, physical difficulties, and social isolation. However, depression manifests differently in different people and feels different to different people.

Reddit users divulged what depression felt like to them when Redditor iodineseaspray asked:

"What does depression feel like to you?"

Some of this is sure to sound familiar.

Keep reading... Show less