Michelle Obama has profound advice for anyone struggling with their mental health

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Michelle Obama has profound advice for anyone struggling with their mental health

A few days ago, Michelle Obama mentioned on her new podcast that she’d been experiencing “low-grade depression.” This she put down to the ongoing coronavirus crisis, protests surrounding the Black Lives Matters movement and the importance of the upcoming presidential election. 

Now, in a follow-up Instagram post, the former first lady has reassured fans that she’s coping well despite these emotional “highs and lows.” Her intention by sharing? To shake the stigma of mental health and keep it real about the toll current world events are taking on all of us.

@michelleobama

“I just wanted to check in with you all because a lot of you have been checking in on me after hearing this week’s podcast,” she captioned a black-and-white snap of herself. “First things first—I’m doing just fine. There’s no reason to worry about me… I’m thinking about the folks out there risking themselves for the rest of us—the doctors and nurses and essential workers of all kinds. I’m thinking about the teachers and students and parents who are just trying to figure out school for the fall. I’m thinking about the people out there protesting and organising for a little more justice in our country.”

One survey found that one in three adults are currently reporting symptoms of depression or anxiety – more than three times the rate from a similar survey conducted in the first half of 2019. And because one of the most effective ways to avoid coronavirus is through social distancing, many have gone long stretches of time without seeing friends or family. Which, btw, can definitely be a contributing factor if you’re feeling less than 100 per cent.

“The idea that what this country is going through shouldn’t have any effect on us—that we all should just feel OK all the time—that just doesn’t feel real to me. So I hope you all are allowing yourselves to feel whatever it is you’re feeling. I hope you’re listening to yourselves and taking a moment to reflect on everything that’s coming at us, and what you might be able to do about it,” she continued. “And to all of you who’ve reached out—thank you. I hope you’re also reaching out to all those you’re closest with, not just with a text, but maybe with a call or a videochat. Don’t be afraid to offer them a shoulder to lean on, or to ask for one yourself. Love you all.”

Hear hear, Michelle.

Main image: Getty

What have you been doing to look after your mental health lately?

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Comments 36

  1. It’s definitely hard during these times to maintain positivity and hope but I try to keep in touch with friends and distract myself by watching something funny to help me feel better.

  2. Good on her, she’s such a positive role-model!

    I’ve been doing it tough, so I’ve been trying to keep myself busy & physically active. I’ve been accomplishing small tasks & getting a lot done: finishing sewing projects, mending, decluttering &c. It keeps my mind pre-occupied. I’ve been reading voraciously & I try to go for walks.

  3. Its really like 2020 was sent to try us. So many people are having to deal with one negative event after another this year and covid just adds to it. For me I am basically a very positive person and my mother taught me to always find the positive in any situation which is what I have done with covid. Quiet time alone means I have been able to dive into my books which have always been an escape for me. Ive spent time cleaning and rearranging furniture which always makes me feel good….I hate cleaning but once its done I have a sense of pride.

  4. She is such a positive role model, the things that have been said about her (and some comments are truly evil) would bring most people down. We all have to look out for one another – BH is a good place to find support if you need it.

  5. Thank goodness we have the internet and we can keep in close contact with our loved ones via video chat etc. It’s not the same as being with them, but this better than nothing.

  6. Walking has been my escape. I feel as though the year has forced me to take care of both my physical and mental health. I need time alone to recharge. It’s challenging when we can’t just get in our car and drive for a change of scenery. I’m embracing my local area more and trying to discover places I once took for granted. I journal on and off. I started a gratitude journal which helps put things in perspective. Can find positive outcomes in a day even when it feels dark and challenging.

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