Hollywood has a way of portraying things to be glamorous and the epitome of a perfect lifestyle. Celebrities are portrayed to live at the height of luxury, with little worries or issues to burden them. While this is a romantic image that is portrayed, recent events have revealed that this is not necessarily true. As awareness of anxiety and mental illness grows, more celebrities, like John Mayer, Emma Stone, and Lena Dunham, have come out to the public to speak about how anxiety has affected them in their own lives before and during their claimed stardom.
John Mayer is a famous musician who is known not only for being a heartbreaker in Hollywood, but also for writing many popular love songs like ‘Waiting on the World to Change’ and ‘Daughters’. His successful music career and reputation may make it seem like Mayer has it all together, but in an interview with Rolling Stones, Mayer shared that he suffers from anxiety and panic attacks. Mayer describes the experience of having a panic attack as quite scary, and explains that as a teenager he struggled to understand what was happening to him when his anxiety was triggered. As Mayer has gained a better understanding of the causes and effects of his own anxiety, he has learned how to use logic and reason to talk himself down from feeling anxious, which reduces the recurrence of his panic attacks.
Emma Stone, a famous actress known for her roles in ‘La La Land’ and ‘Crazy Stupid Love’, has found great success since the beginning of her acting career. Stone has grown famous through her appreciation for and ability to relate to her fans. Many describe Stone as an open, down-to-Earth actress with a refreshingly friendly demeanor. One way many relate to this young actress is through her own story of struggling with anxiety.
Stone describes her first memories of suffering from anxiety as a teen, when she would experience panic attacks and intense fears of dying or losing family members. Stone explains that she has learned how to cope with her anxiety and panic attacks by learning meditation and cognitive behavioral skills. Stone stresses the importance of being mindful of your thoughts and needs to prevent the anxiety from getting out of control. Stone encourages others to seek professional services because it helped her immensely, explaining that once she started receiving help from her therapist, she learned how to control her anxiety, which made it manageable and less intense.
Lena Dunham is a actress, writer, and creator of the HBO hit series ‘Girls’, which successfully ended its final season in early 2017. In her successful career she has made it a point to spread awareness of mental health and wellness issues by sharing her own struggles, experiences, and successes suffering from OCD and panic attacks. Dunham has shared how her anxiety has caused her to become depressed and lose sleep as she overthinks situations that are not completely in her control. Dunham has shared that with time and therapy, she has learned coping skills like challenging negative thoughts that have helped her maintain control of her anxiety. Dunham has also recently discovered the positive effects exercise has on helping her keep her anxiety at bay, expressing that getting daily physical activity has helped her tremendously in reducing symptoms.