Friday, 6 December 2013

Special Review: Staying Strong- 365 days a year

Staying Strong - 365 days a year

Publication Date: November 19th 2013   
~A huge thank you to Headline, who provided a copy in exchange for an honest review.~   
Demi Lovato wakes up each morning and affirms her commitment to herself—to her health, her happiness, her being. Those commitments are the bedrock of her recovery and her work helping other young people dealing with the issues she lives with every single day.

Demi is a platinum-selling recording artist whose latest album—DEMI—is already a smash hit. She’s about to embark on her second season as a judge on X-Factor, and just launched The Lovato Treatment Scholarship Program. And she is an outspoken advocate for young people everywhere.

Demi is also a young woman finding her way in the world. She has dealt deftly with her struggles in the face of public scrutiny, and she has always relied, not just on friends and family, but daily affirmations of her self-worth and value. Affirmations that steady her days and strengthen her resolve.

Those affirmations have grown into STAYING STRONG, a powerful 365-day collection of Demi’s most powerful, honest, and hopeful insights. Each day will provide the readers with a quote, a personal reflection and a goal.

These are Demi’s words. Words she lives by and shares with the people she loves and total strangers alike. They are a powerful testament to a young woman standing up and fighting back.
When you hear the name Demi Lovato, what do you think of? Whether you know her as a singer, an actress, or an X Factor judge, whether you're a fan of her or not, you would have heard about her checking herself into rehab, and once out, her struggles.
We put people up on pedestals, and judge them by a look, on what you think you know without knowing that person. Especially well known public figures.
We judge on what we read, hear, see in a paper, or a misinterpreted interview. We judge them because you think they think they're better than everyone else, because of their job, their money.  Because they're in the public eye, you think you can without any thought, because they're free game, right? You judge them on your own misconceptions, but, what does that say about you?

So, I'll ask again.

When you hear the name Demi Lovato, what do you think of?
Scratch what you think, because she's one of us, you guys.
Most of us don't grow up in the public eye, but growing up is hard in any circumstance. It's a part of life, and for some of us, all of us go through things in that time, but it's what you choose to do with it, is what makes you different from the bullies, different from being a survivor and a fighter than letting it get to you.
"Whatever you have been through in life there's always an opportunity to break out, to break through your struggles. Many of us have to experience something really horrible before we can get to the other side."
You're more susceptible when you're younger, you hear what they say and believe it, you start to think it yourself, instead of turning it into positive. Hell, even when you're an adult, it still gets to you, but you know better. You know now how to say no. To say it's not right, to think your words don't define me.
You'll always have people that want to push you down just because they can.
You'll always have people that want to push you down from learnt behaviour.
That, most of all, makes me feel sorry for them because I know who I am. Demi knows who she is, and won't let her struggles break her, she turned all the negative into positives and learnt from it. Helped others learn from what she went through. She's made mistakes, and she's owned up to them. Demi's learnt to look after herself, and make choices that are right for her.
"Recovery is something that you have to work on every single day, and it's something that doesn't get a day off."
Personally, and I think for everyone's  first therapy session wasn't what you expected it to be. Firstly and every session I'd fill out a form on feelings, and believe me,  that was awkward, and one always stuck out to me.
Have you thought, or made plans to end your life in the past 7 days?
It shocked me, not because I haven't thought of it, but because I remember just not feeling that way, and then all I thought about was how many people do that every week and say yes?
Though those might be yes sometimes, it's alright because you asked for help. You're there, right? And that's what I admire about Demi and everybody else who got there.
"Being in recovery isn't always easy. I have good days and days when I feel like giving up, but those are the day I know I have to ask for help, which isn't easy. Whether it's physical addiction, a mental health issue, a disability, or an emotional trauma, we all have things we're working through. The goal isn't to be perfect. It's just to be the healthiest version of yourself-inside and out."
Never one to shy away from what she's been through Demi Lovato will always talk about them, in hope to say, here I am. That through all those struggles, if you're going through the same thing, or just plain struggling, here she is. A survivor. A fighter. She's through the other side, will it always be that way? No. Nothing is. An addiction will always be an addiction, but it's up to you whether or not you are the addiction.
Don't let it define you, and the thing that Demi Lovato has done, she hasn't. In a way you could argue that she has, that she did let her define her for those years, but she refuses to let it control her any longer, and through that she's lifted the lid off of taboo subjects that people know are there, but never like to talk about because it's a can of worms.
Staying Strong 365 days a year was not what I expected, it's more of a manifesto of each day she's survived. The problem of  today. A goal for today.  Repeat the next day. One at a time. Keep going. With a ton of inspirational quotes, sayings, and even lyrics (and personally, my favourite lyric from Paramore's "Playing God.") can determine how you feel for that day, that gives you control enough to go throughout that day.
Staying Strong 365 days a year is the perfect gift you could give any fan, or any person struggling through, fighting through, a reminder that you're not as alone as you think, and helpful tips to keep you striving.
Rating: 5/5