This year for our 2020 I’m Listening broadcast we came together with artists and athletes, not only to empower listeners to have open conversations around mental health but to demonstrate that talking about mental health is a tool that can truly save lives. We also heard from listeners like you who shared stories about their own mental health journeys. Our two hour I’m Listening broadcast is always here to remind you that it is okay not to be okay.
We received powerful insight and advice from artists and athletes from around the world. In case you missed it, you can catch up with Guns N’ Roses’ Duff McKagan, Jon Bon Jovi, Katy Perry, Lewis Capaldi, Demi Lovato, Alanis Morissette, Luke Combs, DJ Khaled, Talinda Bennington, Dan Carcillo, and Cage the Elephant and more with the full podcast above.
Many of the musicians featured on the broadcast spoke to the power of music and how art has contributed positively to their ever-evolving mental health. Katy Perry explains that her new album Smile will forever be a mental health reminder for her. “I say to myself, ‘I don’t know if I’m going to be depressed again, I don’t know if I’m going to go through it, but I have this touchstone to remind me that I came out the other end. I lived’,” shares the pop star.
Cage The Elephant’s Brad Shultz also demonstrates how he and his bandmates have used music to heal. Shultz says, “writing music and using music as a therapeutic avenue was very big for us. Songs that we had written previously that not necessarily dealt with the loss of some of the friends we had pass away after we recorded those songs, they kind of reshaped and took new form to us.”
Demi Lovato has constantly used her platform to promote mental health advocacy and to be upfront about her own story. Lovato even makes it a point to use her musical talents to reflect on mental health.
The “OK Not to be OK” singer speaks truth into the power of harnessing a positive mindset and elaborates on what works best for her. Demi says, “meditation has become key for me, also just taking care of myself in other ways, making sure I get rest, doing things for my immune system, and staying healthy.” She continues, “it’s really important for me to stay positive and centered. It’s just important that we keep a positive headspace.” Finally, Lovato touches upon the current social climate and urges, “I want to remind every and use my platform to say that ‘silence equals violence.’”
Most powerfully, Duff McKagan, makes it a point to highlight just how impactful candid conversations around mental health can be. The Guns N Roses founding member emphasizes that “it’s safe, it’s okay to talk about and it happens to a lot more of us than we know. If we’ve got each other’s back then we’re good. Talk is totally key.”
For more mental health content, special edition artist interviews, resources, and more head to Imlistening.org. During a time where we need compassion more than ever, I’m Listening is here to provide us all with a few hours filled with kindness, community, and support.
RADIO.COM’s I’m Listening initiative aims to encourage those who are dealing with mental health issues to understand they are not alone. If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression or anxiety, know that someone is always there. Additionally, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-273-8255.