Mr. C: "Today is International Mental Health Day. Let’s all use this day to promise ourselves to be better people"
- Published on Saturday, 10 October 2020 20:15
Good morning from an overcast LA everyone. Today in International Mental Health Day, so I wrote this: Down but not out. Depression is a problem with the dance music scene, that has taken artists & friends from us all. The toll of constant touring, the loneliness, the burnout.
The pressure to be on point at every show giving your happy best. The pressure to keep making great music, release after release. The pressure to keep putting on regular events, supplying the best DJs, production & environment. It’s these things that can weigh heavily on DJs, producers & promoters. The pressure to continue to inspire & to lift others from their daily struggles can be a thankless task, yet it’s expected time after time. As performers & as event hosts we can’t be down, we can’t be stressed, we can’t be depressed because it’s us who the party people look at to help them to celebrate life. To the dancing public, we have to be the faces of joy, bringing the good vibes & always being there, solid, steadfast & cheerful. Yet for most DJs we don’t know what gigs are coming in 2 or 3 months down the road. We’re not sure if we can pay our rent month to month, but somehow we manage & that stress to simply survive cannot be shown while we’re performing. Many events promoters are unsure if adequate numbers will come through the doors to pay the DJs, the security, the sound & lighting people, the door staff, the flights, the hotels, the drivers & more. The stress can be unbearable. Often as promoters, we’re on tenterhooks for the first couple of hours of our events, hoping that the break-even number of people come sooner rather than later. Yet our faces have to be welcoming, happy, assuring & willing to help you to celebrate. Well, right now I’d take all that pressure back in a heartbeat.
Our industry is destroyed due to this pandemic & no one in the establishment seems to care. There’s no proper stimulus package for the nightlife industry. Agents, club managers, door staff, security, dancers, bartenders, servers, we’re stuck between a rock & a hard place right now. A friend pointed out today that our industry has some harsh critics. DJs are being subject to abuse for trying to think outside the box for a way to earn some kind of living & as soon as you come up with an idea there are those who want to shoot you down as though you’re a serial killer, just for wanting to survive. But we’re well know DJs, we’re perceived to be indestructible, our mental health & well being doesn’t seem to be important to those who want to shoot us down at the first given opportunity for trying to find a way to just get by. We don’t have feelings, we don’t have emotions, we don’t have rent & bills to pay, we can survive like magic, just like that.
This pandemic has seen so many people from all walks of life lose their jobs, their income & with it for many, their dignity. Lockdown has brought about a huge difference of opinion. Everyone’s opinion is right, everyone else is wrong & the vitriol on social networks has escalated out of control. This is happening during a time when we should actually be looking out for each other. Being careful what to say to each other as we don’t know where the person we’re about to lay into is at mentally. If they’ve lost a family member if they’re struggling to feed their families if they’re living with people who are making their lives a living hell? Today is International Mental Health Day. Let’s all use this day to promise ourselves to be better people, to think before lashing out at family, friends or people online. To be compassionate & caring as every single one of us is suffering in some way or another right now, be that big or small. No one is immune to the toils of this pandemic so let’s all promise ourselves to be better, kinder & to treat others as we would like to be treated. Let this day be the day that we start to turn a corner together & strive to make each other happier instead of upset.
If you’re feeling down there’s lots we can do to try to lift ourselves & here are some suggestions:
- 1. Put on your favourite 10 songs all in a row, turn the music up really loud, dance & sing along to all the words as loudly as you can.
- 2. Go for a good long walk, preferably in nature if you can. The fresh air, exercise & change of lockdown environment can really help. Try to do this daily.
- 3. Force yourself to meditate for 20 minutes every day. It’s hard to make yourself do anything at all when depressed but meditation can give you the energy needed to get back in the room.
- 4. Make art. Go get yourself some paint brushes, paints & canvas & get those feelings out in a creative way. The finished result will make you feel good & gifting that art to a friend who is down will bring you both some joy.
- 5. Talk. Don’t hold stuff in. Your loved ones, family & friends love you dearly & will be only to happy to listen to you talk & who knows, they may well have some great ideas to lift your spirits.
- 6. Watch a comedy or stand up. Laughter is always a great cure. So contact a friend or family member & watch something really really stupid to have a good old laugh.
- 7. Reach out to others who look like they’re down & need help. There’s nothing more fulfilling than helping others & bringing them to happiness or helping them out of a dark place.
This will greatly improve your sense of self-worth. As a finishing thought, maybe it’s better in these troubled times to be kind than be right? Have a wonderful day. Mr.C