Why hope is essential, not a luxury

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USA TODAY

Most people hope for something.

The big things: An end to the pandemic. Their candidate to w‌in the presidential election. A better future for their children. They hope for tangible things: a bigger paycheck, a safe home, good health. And the more amorphous ones: love, respect, to feel seen. 

Recent polls show that while most Americans remain at least somewhat hopeful about the future, hope is being tested. Suffering and division are ever-present, and there doesn’t seem a clear path forward. But psychologists say hope is not a luxury. For mental health, it’s a necessity. 

“Most people think about it … like the sprinkles on an ice cream, like it’s great if it’s there, but I think it’s actually fundamental to our basic wellbeing,” said Nancy

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