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Mental Health Matters: Give Yourself Permission to be More Than Your Passion Features Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: Give Yourself Permission to be More Than Your Passion

I have been labeled an “overachiever” by family and faculty for as long as I can remember. My parents wanted me to do well, but I pushed myself harder than they ever did. My father struggled with alcoholism, leading to a tumultuous relationship between my parents, and a distant one between he and I. I worked hard to become great enough at something that marriage never became a necessary path for survival. Once I knew the Music Industry was something I wanted to be a part of, there was no…

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Mental Health Matters: “My depression was a part of me, and it needed to be heard.” Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: “My depression was a part of me, and it needed to be heard.”

I’m a writer – or at least, that’s what my parents always said. And so I write a lot (on paper and to keyboard melodies) to try and make sense of the way my brain interprets the world around me. I wrote a story once that framed my depression as a really bad friend who enjoys manipulating you and seeing you fall apart into tiny little pieces. And while that’s a nice thing to imagine – simplifying depression as just some textbook plastic mean girl you can tell to go…

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Mental Health Matters: The Monster in My Head Features Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: The Monster in My Head

There is a monster in my head. I mean, I think there is a monster in everyone’s head, but I’m most familiar with my own monster. Being an artist and a songwriter has allowed me to become very good friends with that monster. The interesting part about my relationship with my monster is that I would never trade it for anything, because without it I’d never be able to feel the massive extremes that I’ve felt. So, in some ways it kind of feels like you have mental health X-Men…

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Mental Health Matters: Anxiety & Depression Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: Anxiety & Depression

Mental illness doesn’t politely walk up to your door and ask nicely to come in; it kicks the door down,throat punches you, and then laughs when you cry out in pain. I’ve been dealing with anxiety and depression stemming from PTSD for about as far back as I can recall memories. As a child my mother was constantly stuck cleaning up vomit because I had worked myself into a panic attack in the middle of the night and had thrown up again. Anxiety can cripple you in the moment if…

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Mental Health Matters: Emptiness, Abandonment, and Self-Love Features Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: Emptiness, Abandonment, and Self-Love

There is a deep pain and emptiness that rests uncomfortably in my soul. It has been there for as long as I can remember, and it requires constant work to keep the feelings at bay. Up until this year I have managed to fill it with all kinds of temporary denials to keep it quiet. But now, I am learning to fight it. To take back control. It is an emptiness that stems from an uncertain childhood, the kind where parents do their best and love you with all their…

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Mental Health Matters: Panic Attacks & Depression Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: Panic Attacks & Depression

I had everything under control until I had massive panic attack while driving 70 mph down a crowded morning highway in May of 2004. A half hour later, my wife had gotten me into a nearby emergency room where I was brought in screaming at full throttle, “I am DYING! My NECK is going to EXPLODE!” An hour later both the Klonopin I’d received and the mortification at my own behavior had finally kicked in. I’d had sporadic episodes of anxiety since my late teens, almost as long as I’d…

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Mental Health Matters: Helping Someone Through Depression Features Guest Blogs Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: Helping Someone Through Depression

When my dear friend had a really terrible season of depression, it was difficult for her to get out of bed in the morning, to function normally in her daily life. She missed days of work and spent most of her time in her room alone. As a person with naturally high serotonin levels my first reaction was to tell her to snap out of it. People with depression hear this type of advice all the time, but they, more than any of us want to be happy, and they…

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Mental Health Matters: Self-Loathing Features Guest Blogs Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: Self-Loathing

I found music in a very typical way: I was searching for something, anything, to hold onto for dear life. A traumatic early childhood left me silenced by fear and unable to find any words to communicate what happened to me even if I had wanted to tell someone. I cried the first time I listened to Seether’s “Finding Beauty in Negative Spaces” at 11 years old. Shaun Morgan’s lyrics hit me in a place that I had buried so deeply I didn’t expect anything ever to find it. I…

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Mental Health Matters: ” I was dying, and I was still trying to keep up with everyone else.” Features Guest Blogs Mental Health Matters News 

Mental Health Matters: ” I was dying, and I was still trying to keep up with everyone else.”

First, I want to say that I am so grateful that more and more people are becoming more open to sharing their own personal struggles with mental health. I have learned that, unfortunately, there is a negative stigma attached to talking about these issues- especially in the music industry. There is so much pressure to be constantly busy, productive, and always ‘on our game’. We are in a world where everything everyone does appears in our social media feed, and whether we are aware of it or not, we are…

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Mental Health Matters: “You Are Not Your Pain” Alternative Features Folk Guest Blogs Indie Mental Health Matters News Rock 

Mental Health Matters: “You Are Not Your Pain”

There’s a notion at open mics, DIY spaces, and the backstage areas of larger venues: that the only difference between eccentric and insane is your talent. That there’s a fine line between madness and genius. That great inspiration can only come from great pain. Whatever made Van Gogh cut his ear off is also what let him make beautiful paintings. Suffer for art. We romanticize it. The 27 Club is a higher honor than living to Leonard Cohen’s age. The true rockstar: desperate and angst-ridden, smashing TVs in hotel rooms,…

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