Disclaimer: In Real Life is a platform for everyday people to share their experiences and voices. All articles are personal stories and do not necessarily echo In Real Life\u2019s sentiments. When I started university at 20, I was the happiest I had ever been. I found friends that were considered friends for life, was dating an amazing guy, and my studies were good too. Everything was falling into place.\u00a0 I found myself laughing harder than I have before, even at the slightest things. I had the life I dreamt of, and I was surrounded with good people. One day I woke up and started feeling gross. I felt sluggish and blue the whole day. \u201cIt\u2019s just one of those days,\u201d I told myself.\u00a0 But deep down, I knew something was off.\u00a0 This went on from a day to a week, and from one week to a few weeks. It felt like I was drowning when everyone else around me was breathing perfectly. After 3 weeks, I started getting a deep feeling of dread. A voice in my head started to convince me to stay in bed all day. \u201cSomething will definitely go wrong if you get out of bed today,\u201d it told me, and I believed it. People started noticing the changes in my mood. My friends would ask me, \u201cWhat\u2019s wrong?\u201d or \u201cDid someone say something bad to you?\u201d I couldn\u2019t think of a response, because outwardly, nothing changed. Everything was going as great as it was. My grades weren\u2019t slipping, my friends were supportive, and I was with a great guy.\u00a0 My mind just decided to flip a switch and make everything harder to feel happy about.\u00a0 As the months went on, I started feeling more and more empty. I\u2019d just become so numb. Eventually, my parents finally took me to a doctor. For the first time in my life, I was diagnosed with severe clinical depression. When I received the news, all I felt was... frustration.\u00a0\u00a0 Everyone had been asking me, \u201cWhat\u2019s wrong?\u201d and I wanted to know why too. But the diagnosis didn\u2019t give me any answers.\u00a0 I went from being content with everything to not liking myself. I\u2019m being selfish, I thought. Something is wrong with me for not being satisfied with everything I have. I started becoming my biggest critic.\u00a0 Not knowing why I was feeling this way made me say stuff to hurt myself. I became my own punching bag.\u00a0 Why do I have to study? I am stupid anyway. Why do I have to go out? They don\u2019t actually want you there. When my boyfriend doesn\u2019t call, I would just think, he doesn't love me and wants to leave me. It was exhausting. I had to take antidepressants to help me sleep, and for a while, it worked. I would sleep longer at night. But when I wake up, it's the same inner voice again, telling me, you\u2019re stupid, nobody wants you around. I used to cry everyday because of the way I was beating myself up mentally. Sometimes it would be midday and I would have already cried 3 times, and I\u2019d still have to go through the rest of the day.\u00a0 I\u2019d have to repeat my whole day, hating myself for being depressed when I have so many good things around me.\u00a0 Self-love felt like a chore.\u00a0 I tried to reverse the effects by repeating words of encouragement to myself, after reading about it online, words like \u201cyou\u2019ve got this\u2019 or \u2018you can do it!\u2019 But they just seemed disgusting to say or hear. It always seemed like lies, even though it was coming from me. When my mind hears \u2018you\u2019ve got this\u2019 it would just feel like it's \u2018you can\u2019t even do this simple thing, you are so bad at everything.\u2019\u00a0 Everything became pointless to me. I lost motivation to do anything, even simple things like laundry, brushing my teeth or even eating.\u00a0 My mother would ask me what\u2019s wrong? She wanted to understand, but I would just ignore her. I couldn\u2019t help it, I felt terrible about it. But in my mind it was just kept saying there\u2019s no point, she is not going to understand.\u00a0 In movies, it always showed that one gets depressed when someone dies or if you have a bad breakup. No one really tells you that you can just wake up and be depressed even though nothing terrible has happened.\u00a0 As I went to therapy more often, I realised that it was okay to not be okay. It\u2019s a chemical imbalance, and it wasn\u2019t my fault. It was not anyone\u2019s fault really. I realised I didn\u2019t need to have a reason to be depressed. When I realised that, it felt like a weight was lifted off my shoulders. I was still depressed... but somehow, better.\u00a0 Going to therapy in a better mindset made it more effective.\u00a0 I would go to therapy once a week, do my breathing exercises and journal my feelings.\u00a0 My therapist gave me this activity to count how many seconds I can hold my breath. So whenever I got agitated, I would hold my breath for around 5 second and let go slowly for another 5 seconds.\u00a0 I\u2019d repeat this a few times until I calm down. This really helped my anxiety attacks because instead of letting my mind run, I would be focused on counting which distracted my mind.\u00a0 Every night, I wrote about how my day went, and how I felt throughout. It\u2019s nice, it feels like your safe space where you can vent. I still do this until today, and it\u2019s refreshing to see how far I have come from then when everything seemed wrong to today.\u00a0 I could feel myself progressing, I found myself genuinely smiling and laughing.\u00a0 I had more motivation, my grades started becoming better. I would go out when my friends call me out. I started letting more people in.\u00a0 After a while, I started going to therapy once every week, and then once a month. Eventually I stopped, it's been two years since I saw a therapist. I do have my dark days once in a blue moon, but I know how to handle it better.\u00a0 Whenever it's one of those days now, I force myself to get out of bed and go for a hike, swim, or rock climbing -- anything active so I put my energy into that.\u00a0 It\u2019s really refreshing, and it makes me feel productive too.\u00a0\u00a0 My advice for anyone working on their depression You don\u2019t always have to feel your best. It\u2019s alright to be down, so don't blame yourself. But if you can, seek professional help, talk to somebody.\u00a0 One thing nobody talks about is that not every therapist is a fit for you.\u00a0 I went through 2 therapists to finally find a perfect one. It was not their fault, I just didn\u2019t click with them. It\u2019s like friends, some you don\u2019t get along with and some you can click with and open up instantly.\u00a0 Similarly, not every medication is suitable for you. Some may make you feel worse and some help you.\u00a0 And if you are taking medications, don\u2019t abuse it, take it responsibly.\u00a0 It\u2019s not a one-size-fits-all situation. Take your time and find what works best for you.\u00a0\u00a0 For more stories like this, read: Your Mental Health: When You Know It\u2019s Time to Get Professional Help and Depression: 5 Hidden Signs of Suffering If you like what you read, follow us on Facebook & Instagram.