Ask Jigsaw: Hate living but don't want to die | Advice for Young People

Ask Jigsaw: Hate living but don’t want to die

I smoke a lot of weed to take away the feeling of life. I hate living but don’t want to die how can I change this?


Although it can seem that this helps in the short term, often it adds to the overall problem.

Alan, Jigsaw Clinician


Thank you for your honesty in this question. It sounds like you feel very stuck and unhappy with the way things are for you at the moment. It is not unusual when people feel like this that they use substances such as drugs or alcohol to try to take away or numb the feelings. Although it can seem that this helps in the short term, often it adds to the overall problem, as cannabis can have a depressant effect. It can decrease our motivation to make changes that are needed. If you want support specifically around reducing your weed intake, you can find information and a list of services at

You say that you don’t want to die, and it is really important to hold on to this. However, it sounds like you want things to be different in your life.


Where and when are you at your best?

Alan, Jigsaw Clinician

First of all, it might be a good idea to think about the areas of your life that you are happy with (if any). Where and when are you at your best? If it’s hard to think about right now, are there times in the past that you could pick out as being particularly positive? What was going on for you then? What were you doing? Can you identify any differences between then and now? Think about the skills and the strengths that you drew on at these times. Are you using these skills and strengths at the moment? Are you using them enough?

Start with small changes

Then think about what areas of your life you would like to see change in. Is it with regards to your relationships, education or employment status, how you spend your time, your living situation? These are all really big areas to consider making changes in, so don’t feel you have to rush in and do everything at once. After you identify an area that you would like to change, try to break it down into really small steps that you can focus on. For example, the thought of getting a job can seem overwhelming, but perhaps looking online at what’s available in the job market is a first step. Once you know the direction you want to go in, focusing just on the step in front of you can make it easier. Small changes can lead to bigger shifts. Although things won’t be better overnight, through implementing small changes, momentum grows.  If possible, it can be helpful to let someone else know that you want things to be different in your life. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and support from those around you.

An important factor in beginning to make changes in your life is the support and encouragement that you give to yourself. Do you speak to yourself (internally) the way you would speak to someone you love? If not, find out more about how to deal with your ‘inner-critic’ here.

It is great that you are thinking about making changes. You deserve for things to get better and every little step you take is a step forward. The best of luck with your journey.

Take care,

Alan, Jigsaw Clinician