Stephen Hawking left the world yesterday and Earth is a undeniably much richer for all the knowledge he spread.

He also spread a lot of kindness and compassion and once shared some very good advice for people struggling with depression.

As we look back on the life of one of the greatest minds of all time, we resurrect a piece of wisdom from Hawking to those trying to cope with mental illness.

Earlier this year, speaking at the Royal Institute in London, Hawking said:


"The message of this lecture is that black holes ain't as black as they are painted. They are not the eternal prisons they were once thought.

"Things can get out of a black hole both on the outside and possibly to another universe. So if you feel you are in a black hole, don't give up – there's a way out."

Despite struggling with a devastating physical disability, the theoretical physicist never lost his optimism and sense of humour. In fact, he considered those traits keys to succeed in life.

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life may seem because you can lose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and life in general."

READ MORE: Stephen Hawking showed off his comic side with hilarious TV cameos


If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call police immediately on 111.

Or if you need to talk to someone else:

• LIFELINE: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
• SUICIDE CRISIS HELPLINE: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
• YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633
• NEED TO TALK? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)
• KIDSLINE: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
• WHATSUP: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
• DEPRESSION HELPLINE: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7)
• SAMARITANS: 0800 726 666
• OUTLINE: 0800 688 5463 (confidential service for the LGBTQI+ community, their friends and families)
• RURAL SUPPORT TRUST: 0800 787 254.