We all go through problems, obstacles and challenges that may cause us some degree of anxiety. In a Facebook Audio Room event from last month, three artists and a psychotherapist meet to discuss mental health and the pressures of life, of living in this world.
Becky G, an american singer and actress of mexican descent, starts by saying how when she slows down from work and is triggered “things catch up to me that I thought I overcame”.
Christina Milian, a singer and actress of afro-cuban descent, said that when she feels everything piling up on her, she tries to take it one step at a time and reach out to someone who cares.
Becky G talks about the importance of the stories we tell ourselves, that she feels she is not the only one going through issues and tries to tell herself “this too shall pass”.
Normani, an american singer and dancer, says it’s a never ending cycle and she can get anxious thinking about the things she wants to accomplish but makes an effort to live in the moment, be satisfied and lean on God.
When questioned about how family can be a cause of anxiety, Rhonda Richards-Smith urges to think about in advance and prioritize our self care, to have patience and focus on our wellness. If any family member exerts pressure on you, it’s important to try to develop a skillset that allows you to grow. There’s a difference between merely surviving and thriving. Rhonda also explained the gut is in direct communication with your brain and that explains how someone can become an emotional eater, for example.
Christina Milian highlights how fundamental it is to take care of yourself and have a positive attitude. She says that for keeping stability, she makes sure she stays hydrated because when she is not drinking enough water her mental clarity is affected. Rhonda agrees and also advices to monitor the intake of coffee.
Normani expresses that she feels her body communicates with her well and Becky G emphasizes how learning what the body tells you is a great part of the work. She praises the benefits of journaling for untangling her brain and express herself by seeing it in paper, either by long form writing or a to do list. Rhonda says how important it is to practice brain dumping and keep a notebook by your bed every morning and every night. She also talks about meditation and advices “Take a moment to be still and listen to your inner voice”.
Becky G says it’s essential to check in with yourself and says her life changed when she started therapy three years ago. She describes feeling unsettling panic attacks on a daily basis that were caused partly from having the mentality of a hustler, for trying to make the most of everything and not waste any opportunity. Taking enough rest is now high on her priorities.
Rhonda explains it is crucial to get to the roots of the anxiety and distinguish between occasional anxious moments of a clinical anxiety disorder. In the later, the person is constantly tired, sleepy, the symptoms are persistent, she has moments of huge tension, nervousness and uncontrolled worry (feeling like something really bad is about to happen), a sense of “doom and gloom”. She stresses it’s important to focus on your breathing and heartbeat and go to your primary doctor. “Asking for help is not a sign of weakness, don’t be in your own way. Our evolution is through each other”.
Normani says that a feeling of community is really important, that everyone is going through something and having a family that can be your support system will help you be aware of who you actually are and don’t let your bad moments define you.
Christina Milian says when she hits low points and feels vulnerable, she tries to connect to her faith and to her belief God doesn’t give you anything you can’t handle.
Becky G introduces the concept of “crashing in safe places”, that she is believes there are many forms of therapy like reading, have boundaries and connecting with your community. Being a part of mexican-american minority, Becky G describes how they tend to eat and drink, minimize their feelings and regulate themselves emotionally through food.
Normani says when she is overwhelmed she tries to wake up early and set the tone for herself, manifest, center, be grounded and get ready to tackle what is in front of her.
Christina Milian seeks peace and calm in turbulent times, go for walks, talk to herself in a positive way, exercise regularly to release endorphins because when she moves her body, she feels better.
Becky G says we can’t pour from an empty cup and it’s really important to take the time to take care of yourself to be able to keep an active life.
Rhonda expresses how workouts are helpful along with taking deep breaths. When you inhale your whole body expands and when your exhale it contracts and doing it consciously can be very soothing.
Normani says therapy was game changing for her and also feeling close to God, feeling confident in who she is, to trust in Him for bettering her world.
Christina Milian says there are different levels of anxiety and you have to be mindful and aware of them. Rhonda Richards-Smith agrees and says how important it can be to take medication, do therapy or both for it to not get worse overtime.
Becky G talks again of finding your safe place, seeking professional help and guidance. Rhonda advices to look into it before it turns into a major crisis.
Becky G finishes by saying “don’t wait and don’t stop”, there’s no shame in trying to solve your problems, be consistent, rest and do your best to take care of yourself.
This event raised funds for NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness).