Photo credit: Em Marcovecchio

World Mental Health Day Is Incredibly Important But We Must Strive To Continue The Discussion Past The Social Media Event

Once a year social media bands together to talk about mental health on this day, you would almost be fooled into believing we’re making great progress around the discussion of mental health. Unfortunately this is far from the truth. For many people, such as myself who live with anxiety and depression on a daily basis, it’s another day where people pretend to care, mostly for the social obligation that these hashtag events create. This may sound very negative and perhaps even unappreciative of the fact that there is a day dedicated to this important discussion. However, it is my firm opinion that this is a topic of conversation that should be spoken about on a daily basis, as it affects every single one of us.

It is utterly vital that we continue this conversation every day, it needs to be a conversation that companies need to have with their staff, between friends, family, anyone really. If we can all work together to help those that are struggling then we can create a fairer and more compassionate world for us ALL to live in. As I said, mental health problems can strike us at any moment, no matter who you are. It’s in everyone’s interest to continue this conversation outside of these days. The conversations around mental health have led to incredible changes in our private lives and public, but we still have a very long way to go. It’s often that when mentioning mental health people get uncomfortable and shut down, this needs to stop. If someone comes to you with an issue regarding their mental health you should listen, you ask how you can help, you listen to what they have to say. It could save someone’s life. Most people just want to be told it’s okay, and they’ll be okay. That can come in the form of words or just a simple hug.

The world is a scary place. Especially at the moment, I personally don’t think I have ever felt more isolated and worried. I firmly beleive it is something that everyone has felt at some point in the past two years. Whilst the world shifts to individualism we should strive for togetherness. I want anyone around me to know that they are safe with me and if they have any problems I will stop and listen. We should all strive for this.

The music industry can often feel like a community full of like-minded and caring people, which for the most part it is. However, there are still some attitudes around mental health that need to be changed. Not to mention the fact that people’s attitudes towards others needs great work. I personally live with anxiety and have a panic disorder. Going outside can be a real mission for me at times and I am constantly attempting to hold myself together, especially when at events. In the past someone’s reaction to me (particularly from stage managers) has been so awful I have had to literally run to a toilet to have a panic attack. I to this day cannot fathom or understand why you would treat someone like that for no reason, and this happens a lot in the industry. I am not unique, there are plenty of others who have felt this way. It’s a shit thing to happen especially as I feel most comfortable at a concert, it’s one of the few places I feel truly at peace. In today’s divided world it’s one of the few places you can feel in total unity with another human, for those few precious moments you are one peoples gathered for the same thing. To enjoy music, to let go of your worries, and to have an experience. t’s the beautiful thing about music. It has an ability to unite us for a brief moment, which in today’s world is incredibly rare.

Ultimately what I am saying is that days like today are incredibly important but we must remember to carry on past the share on social media. Think about how we act to people, be kind. Always be kind. Remember to listen to those that seek your ear, be a friend, and just kind. None of us are perfect, and it’s not easy to always be a perfect human but it is fairly easy to be kind. Just remember your actions directly affect others, positively and negatively. Let’s strive to make a safe, happier, and kinder world. Music is a beautiful gift so lets make this industry the best it can be.

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