Therapy helped me avoid a mental crisis
It’s no secret that comedians and high-energy television personalities are particularly susceptible to mental health issues. Often referred to as the âsad clown paradox,â the contradictory association between light humor and mental disorders, including depression, is common in the entertainment industry.
In his memoirs, A class act, comedian Rob Beckett reveals the turbulence he felt in his mind while filming in Cape Town, South Africa. During filming, which was sandwiched between the dates of his sold-out comedy tour, Beckett became “the most miserable I’ve ever been,” he writes in the book. “I woke up on January 5th in a five star hotel room thinking it would be better and easier for everyone if I was dead.”
“I thought I was a confident, well-rounded person, but I wasn’t. I was feeding off that drug of attention, applause and laughter from the concert,” the 35-year-old continues. “You chase it like a drug, but the reality is that being happy is what you are looking for, which comes from within.”
âI played four or five nights a week for 10 or 11 years until the pandemic. At the end of it all, because I was working so hard and you only have so much energy, you burn yourself out. “
Although he has specific goals to pursue, Beckett admits his success has not brought him happiness. âIn my head I was like, ‘Once I get it right, once I sell Hammersmith Apollo, once I have a house with a mortgage, it’s going to be fine.’ not.”
After speaking with his manager, Beckett sought help from a therapist for eight months. âI took therapy to calm my brain. I wouldn’t say I had depression because it would be unfair to people who have had it, but I was definitely going in that direction,â he writes. “The timing for therapy, the pandemic, and the stopping of my concerts was fortunate. It gave me the breathing space that you can’t always take if you have a busy schedule.”
âThe problem with anxiety is that it’s all about the build-up. I was oblivious. At the moment I’m brilliant. You throw me on a stage anywhere and I’ll be fine. “, he continues. “I’ll get the room ready and be good at what I have to do. However, give me a week in a hotel room to get ready, and you’ll see the worst.”
As Beckett proves, there is endless value in opening up – you are not alone.
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