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Taylor Swift-themed mental health recovery playlist - escapism series

For when you're feeling stuck, hopeful, inspired, down, and everything in between. Taylor's music says it all. These were my go-tos, and yes, my cry-tos, during anorexia nervosa recovery, which is so often similar to any other eating disorder, addiction or substance-related mental health recovery journey.

You can find this playlist here, as part of my escapism series.

black and white photo of Taylor Swift reputation album

I'm not alone in thinking of Taylor's music my coming-of-age soundtrack. As a 2000s baby, my own life experiences consistently lagged behind Taylor's personal developments. Her lyrics alluded to epic breakups and love stories, and I related to them nonetheless. Relationships between multiple people aren't so different from the ceaseless chatter in my Butterfly Mind, all of my parts vying to be heard, to be the (anti-(?)) hero of the story. As I close out my "Taylor-Swift-year" (22), I'm sharing the songs whose lyrics became my proverbial catalyst for developing mental health and wellness self-talk.

"We gather stones / Never knowing what they'll mean / Some to throw / Some to make a diamond ring... And I still talk to you / When I'm screaming at the sky / And when you can't sleep at night."

Track #2: "peace"

Fun fact this will forever and always (;) be my absolute favorite song. I.. wow.

"I never had the courage of my convictions / as long as danger is near / And it's just around the corner darlin' / 'Cause it lives in me / No, I could never give you peace."

Track #3: "Cruel Summer"

One of her most iconic bridges of all time and made even more iconic based on having to wait over 4 years to see it live from Lover Fest being cancelled to The Eras Tour.... For deeper feels switch this song with "Tolerate It"

"Said, "I'm fine," but it wasn't true / I don't wanna keep secrets just to keep you/ And I snuck through the garden / every night that summer just to seal my fate, oh / And I scream for whatever it's worth / "I love you ain't that the worst thing you ever heard?"

Taylor Swift in the "Out of the Woods" music video from Youtube. She is pictured in a blue dress in the tundra followed by wolves

Just wait for that opening line... "Looking at it now / It all seemed so simple."

Track #5: "happiness"

That chorus hits different though. Are you catching my mental health recovery

metaphors now?

"There'll be happiness after you / But there was happiness because of you / Both of these things can be true / There is happiness."

This one opens the Lover album for a reason. It's a bop. From the opening lines to the chorus: "How many days did I spend / Thinkin' 'bout how you did me wrong, wrong, wrong? / Lived in the shade you were throwin' / 'Til all of my sunshine was gone, gone, gone... I forgot that you existed / And I thought that it would kill me, but it didn't."

Track #7: "Clean"

The playlist wouldn't be complete without this classic. "Gone was every trace of you, I think I am finally clean."

That healing vibe though. "My castle crumbled overnight / I brought a knife to a gunfight / They took the crown, but it's alright / All the liars are calling me one / Nobody's heard from me for months / I'm doing better than I ever was."

Taylor Swift from the "You Need to Calm Down" music video wearing a pink bikini top with a pink fluffy coat, holding a pink martini-looking drink

You already know this one is for blasting on the walk to the subway.

Track #10: "ME!"

Taylor Swift in her pink fluffy dress pictured for Rolling Stone

It's fitting that this article was posted on my 19th birthday in Rolling Stone.

What are you mental health recovery song recs? Let's start a thread.

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