Mind, balance, life: 40 quotes of hope on World Mental Health Day 2021

From despair to dignity, this compilation of inspiring quotes highlights the importance of mental resilience and social support, particularly in these difficult times.
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Launched in 2014, StoryBites is a weekly feature from YourStory, featuring notable quotable quotes from our earlier articles (see our previous compilation on India’s COVID-19 struggle here). This special series of quotes focuses on perspectives and attitudes about mental health and courage.

World Mental Health Day is marked each year on October 10. It aims to raise awareness and advocacy for mental health, and reduce stigma and misconceptions. First celebrated in 1992, it has now acquired even more significance in times of the pandemic and increased social pressures.

From pain to perseverance, this compilation of quotes conveys hopes and solace, while also acknowledging the real challenges ahead. See also our compilation of quotes on the occasion of World Health Day (celebrated on April 7).

Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strength. - Charles Spurgeon

Anxiety is a thin stream of fear trickling through the mind. If encouraged, it cuts a channel into which all other thoughts are drained. - Arthur Somers Roche

Be patient and tough; someday this pain will be useful to you. - Ovid

Being able to be your true self is one of the strongest components of good mental health. - Lauren Fogel Mersy

Being vulnerable is actually a strength and not a weakness - that’s why more and more mental health is such an important thing to talk about. - Cara Delevingne

Change what you can, manage what you can’t. - Raymond McCauley

Emotional pain is not something that should be hidden away and never spoken about. There is truth in your pain, there is growth in your pain, but only if it’s first brought out into the open. - Steven Aitchison

Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light. - Albus Dumbledore

Healing takes time, and asking for help is a courageous step - Mariska Hargitay

I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship. - Amy March, ‘Little Women’

If we start being honest about our pain, our anger, and our shortcomings instead of pretending they don’t exist, then maybe we’ll leave the world a better place than we found it. – Russell Wilson

If you have been brutally broken but still have the courage to be gentle to other living beings, then you’re a badass with a heart of an angel. - Keanu Reeves

In any given moment, we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety. - Abraham Maslow

In the middle of winter, I, at last, discovered that there was in me an invincible summer. - Albert Camus

Increasing the strength of our minds is the only way to reduce the difficulty of life. - Mokokoma Mokhonoana

Life is like a piano; the white keys represent happiness and the black show sadness. But as you go through life’s journey, remember that the black keys also create music. - Ehssan

Mental health is something that we all need to talk about, and we need to take the stigma away from it. So let’s raise the awareness. Let’s let everybody know it’s OK to have a mental illness and addiction problem. - Demi Lovato

Mental health…is not a destination, but a process. It’s about how you drive, not where you’re going. – Noam Shpancer

Mental health problems don’t define who you are. They are something you experience. You walk in the rain and you feel the rain, but you are not the rain. - Matt Haig

Nobody can save you but yourself, and you’re worth saving. It’s a war not easily won, but if anything is worth winning then this is it. - Charles Bukowski

Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves - Henry David Thoreau

Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action. - Walter Anderson

Often it’s the deepest pain that empowers you to grow into your highest self. Karen Salmansohn

One small crack does not mean that you are broken, it means that you were put to the test and you didn’t fall apart. - Linda Poindexter

Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars. - Kahlil Gibran

Self-care is how you take your power back. - Lalah Delia

Sometimes you climb out of bed in the morning and you think, I’m not going to make it, but you laugh inside - remembering all the times you’ve felt that way. - Charles Bukowski

Start listening to the way you talk to yourself. These interactions will tell you how well you know yourself, how much you respect yourself, and what boundaries you are lacking. - Sara Kuburic

The best thing you could do is master the chaos in you. You are not thrown into the fire, you are the fire. - Mama Indigo

The best way out is always through. - Robert Frost

The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. - Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in - Leonard Cohen

There is hope, even when your brain tells you there isn’t. - John Green

This feeling will pass. The fear is real but the danger is not. - Cammie McGovern

Tough times never last, but tough people do! - Robert Schuller

We are not our trauma. We are not our brain chemistry. That’s part of who we are, but we’re so much more than that. - Sam J. Miller

What mental health needs is more sunlight, more candour, and more unashamed conversation. - Glenn Close

You are not your illness. You have an individual story to tell. You have a name, a history, a personality. Staying yourself is part of the battle. - Julian Seifter

You don’t have to be positive all the time. It’s perfectly okay to feel sad, angry, annoyed, frustrated, scared and anxious. Having feelings doesn’t make you a negative person. It makes you human. - Lori Deschene

You don’t have to control your thoughts. You just have to stop letting them control you. - Dan Millman

You don’t start with courage and then face fear. You become courageous because you face your fear. - Laura Davis

You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection. - Buddha

Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start. - Nido Qubein

Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts. – Buddha

YourStory has also published the pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups’ as a creative and motivational guide for innovators (downloadable as apps here: Apple, Android).

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