“I didn’t have anyone I could high five, I didn’t have anyone I could talk to who could relate, I just wondered, shouldn’t I have someone I could call right now?”- Taylor Swifts thoughts after a winning a Grammy, from her Netflix documentary Miss Americana.

“Oh my god, that is all I wanted, that was all I focused on.”

“When you get to the top of the mountain, it’s like oh god, what now?”

It is a seriously lonely ride for an artist living the rollercoaster of success. With the rise of pressures both socially and physically we must recognise mental wellness as a priority in the music industry. A recent study by charity Help Musicians UK found that over 60% of musicians have suffered from depression or other psychological issues, with touring an issue for 71% of respondents.

The contrast between an artists life and their friends and loves ones is very hard to get your head around and breakdowns of personal relationships becomes normal. Isolation and loneliness is one of the killers in the industry. There are ways to combat these emotions and put prevention strategies in place:

  1. Connection with a group of people who are not in business with you is paramount. Best friends who do “normal things”can keep you feeling a part of community and everyday life. Isolation creates anxiety, connect with someone you trust.
  2. Staying healthy on tour is harder than the actual tour – It takes discipline to stay healthy and there are some principles to stay on top of it all. Check out the free download by Arts Wellbeing Collective – A guide to promoting positive wellbeing on tour.
  3. Be OK with not being OK. Get in touch with organisations like Backline, MusiCares (both in USA), Support Act (in Australia) and Help Musicians UK, who connect music industry professionals with mental wellness providers.
  4. Be prepared for post-performance depression’, or PPD. Mental health professional John C Buckner writes: “When the body experiences major shifts in mood. In the case of PPD, the process is more extreme with higher highs and lower lows.” Taking care of yourself post show is just as crucial.

I would like to think that an artist’s mental health is taken into more consideration now. It is my number one focus to provide support through coaching and mentoring artists, crew and management when challenging times are present.

If you are feeling low and are seeking assistance please check out any of these resources for more information and support.

Support Act – 1800 959 500

Beyond Blue – 1300 46 36

Backline – Fill out their on line contact form to be connected with a case manager

MusiCares – Fill out their online form to be connected with a case manager

Help Musicians – mmm@helpmusicians.org.uk

Nancy Lipman has a career spanning over 20 years in the music, media and corporate industries identifying, developing, coaching and mentoring high-calibre talent both locally and internationally.

A DJ, personal development and business guru, Nancy has run her own successful artist agency since 2011. Strategically and intuitively understanding her clients, with laser like focus on wellbeing, Nancy is on a mission to create positive, successful careers for artists in the music industry.

Nancy is the founder of WingWoman, a coaching and mentoring company supporting the business and personal life of an artist in the music industry.

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