The music industry isn’t all glitz, glamour and golden gongs; it can be one hell of a stressful place, as many who work there can attest. That’s why we’ve teamed up with top music development programme, Ultimate Artist’s, who are running a Music, Mindset and Mental Health event. Little Mix’s vocal coach, Joshua Alamu, will be running practical workshops on strengthening your brand and your mindset alongside top music therapists, coaches and journalists. Good mental health and fantastic music, go hand in hand after all.
To emphasise just how important it is to speak out on these issues, we’ve rounded up five fearless celebs below who have successfully broken down the barriers surrounding mental health discussions and spoken out about their own struggles below.
After initially struggling with depression on her own, Artist Adele has become more outspoken in how she suffered from anxiety, especially during performances. She also battled with postnatal depression following the birth of her son. (And according to the Royal College of Psychiatrists this is actually super common - postnatal (or postpartum) depression affects between 10-15% of mothers). The Skyfall singer is all too aware of the illness, and just how debilitating it can be. The BBC reported her as saying to Vanity Fair: “One day I said to a friend, ‘I ******* hate this,’ and she just burst into tears and said, ‘I ******* hate this, too.’ And it was done. It lifted… Eventually I just said, I’m going to give myself an afternoon a week. A friend of mine said, ‘Really? Don’t you feel bad?’ I said, ‘I do, but not as bad as I’d feel if I didn’t do it.’” Adele shows us that if you’re suffering from mental health issues, it’s important to acknowledge that it’s OK to be protective with your time.
2. Demi Lovato
“I just think mental illness is something people need to learn more about and the stigma needs to be taken away from,” Digital Spy reported the singer as saying after she launched her initiative Be Vocal: Speak Up for Mental Health. Demi has spoken openly about having bipoloar – often with honesty and with a pragmatic attitude. She has said that she doesn’t put pressure on herself to simply get better, but treats her condition as a “day by day… hour by hour” situation.” She recently spoke at the Democratic National Convention, where she advocated for all mental health sufferers and campaigned for better access to health care in the States. Watch her empowering speech above.
3. Britney Spears
Britney has fought – at times – a very public battle with mental health issues. And with all the fame and pressure, it’s no wonder she’s found herself dealing with this from such a young age. “I moved to Los Angeles when I was very young. I was so under scrutiny,” Britney told Marie Claire UK. “If a hair was out of place, I’d be so anxious. I would get very anxious about so many things.” We don’t know full details about all the things she must have been going through as she doesn’t talk openly about it, but at present she seems to be in a much better place. Keep being you Britney!
4. James Arthur
X Factor’s James Arthur is a trailblazer for mental health, having signed up to be an ambassador for mental health charity SANE to make a difference in reducing the stigma of mental illness in young men and others, and to help others who might be dealing with depression or anxiety. “The way I deal with anxiety is to try and stay in the moment as much as possible and not think about what’s coming up in the future” he says in the MTV video above. “I try and seize the moment as much as possible.” It’s OK if you feel you can’t talk about what you’re going through – don’t feel pressured, try and employ your own personal techniques to help you stay calm and focused. And remember that you’re not alone – anxiety can cripple even the most confident-appearing people.
Not only is she a worldwide icon and top singer, Beyonce is also a champion of mental health issues having been incredibly open about her own struggles. From the outset, it seems like Bey’s indestructible, but she is also proof that any one of us can suffer from mental health issues – and still be badass. This year, the singer revealed what she thought women could do to take better care of themselves. “Women have to take the time to focus on our mental health – take time for self, for the spiritual, without feeling guilty or selfish” she said. She also advised people to be empowered into dealing with their mental health before worrying about other things first. “The world will see you the way you see you, and treat you the way you treat yourself” she said. Having depression or anxiety, or needing help – doesn’t mean you are less strong than anybody else.
Remember; if you’re looking for guidance and support in the music industry, join us on Tuesday 6th February for the Ultimate Artists Development Programme panel on mental health in the music industry.
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