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Addressing mental health struggles continues; the news this past January of another beautiful young woman, Cheslie Kryst, who had jumped from her New York apartment window hit me harder than expected.

Not because I knew her personally and not because I followed her through her glamorous career, but simply because we had lost another one. Lost another beautiful soul to suicide. Lost another one because of our incompetence in dealing with the mental health battle that we are fighting all over the world.

Shortly after the news, I stumbled onto Demi Lovato’s song “Anyone”. Her lyrics slapped me harder than my morning coffee has ever been able to…

“I tried to talk to my piano, I tried to talk to my guitar, Talk to my imagination, Confided into alcohol, I tried and tried and tried some more, Told secrets ‘til my voice was sore, Tired of empty conversation, ‘Cause no one hears me anymore”.

Bold and lonely words that, in my mind, somehow helped me to understand what must be felt in those moments of despair. 

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What was harder to grapple with was the narrative that we saw just a short time before as we watched the Olympic chaos unfold and watched a young Russian girl fold into tears following a performance that should have been the time of her life, and then only a short time before that as we watched Simon Biles confront her fears and take a stand for her mental health.

And, a few years before that when we watched Michael Phelps courageously and openly talk about his mental health struggles. Not too long ago Robin Williams, Chester Bennington, Mindy McCready, and countless others that we have watched fall too soon in their precious lives all to a mental health crisis that we continue to deny exists. 

We have to do better. We have to keep this conversation going and here are a few ways that we can do that…

  1. Check in on friends and family. It’s easy to fall into a funk and unfortunately, we can’t predict when it will happen so check in, say hi. 
  2. Therapy comes in many forms. Check out all the options, find the one that works the best for you and has the best credentials.
  3. Mental Health Awareness month is in May. Look out for different ways you can support charities, events, or initiatives to keep the spotlight on mental health awareness. 
  4. If you don’t want to talk, which a lot of us don’t always want to, be opened to listen. Sometimes listening is a powerful tool that can help us to feel not so alone in the moment. 
  5. Encourage friends, family, or colleagues to get help if they express something that is weighing on them. No battle should be fought alone, and there are many ways to get the help and support that is needed in our times of need. 

There is no good or bad time to talk about mental health. There is no good or bad time to speak up and get help or just talk. There is no good or bad time for us to listen to our athletes and celebrities do whatever it is we can do to help and support them.

We are not alone, even when we feel alone, we aren’t. We have the support and the legacies of those who left us too soon to live and speak through. Keep this conversation going even when the silence is calming!


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