Deepika Padukone Gets Awarded For Her Contribution Towards Mental Health Awareness. And She Walks The Talk
They often tell you how you should always take care of yourself when you’re sick, take a day off, stay in, rest it out and tend to where you’re hurt. But what they forget to tell you in all of this is, that the sickness in question here for them, will always be physical, because the moment you tell them how the sickness you’re talking about is at a mental level, you’re instantly branded crazy or delusional. 7 years ago, the first time when I found myself dealing with clinical depression, the fact that no one around me, or even I, understood my struggle was my first cue to how unaware we were as a society, about an illness that manifested itself at a mental level. Which is perhaps why, in 2015 when actress Deepika Padukone decided to come out about the fact that she is dealing with anxiety and clinical depression, I along with a hundred others could relate with it all too well.
Recently at the World Economic Forum’s Crystal Award ceremony, held in Davos, Deepika Padukone was lauded and presented with an award for her contributions towards mental health awareness and we think she earned it. In what was a heartwarming and hard hitting speech, Deepika Padukone spoke beautifully about her own struggle with depression and anxiety and how her journey from 2014 to now, has changed her.
Also Read : Alia Bhatt Cried Because She Didn’t Understand Her Sister Shaheen Bhatt’s Depression. Mental Health Issues Aren’t Always Obvious.
From pointing out how grave the situation is, about one person committing suicide over it every 40 seconds, to making us realise how dangerous the stigma surrounding it makes it for them, Deepika reminded us to be more considerate and aware of our own feelings and deal with them the right way. Sharing how it was her mother who proposed seeking professional help, Deepika went on to admit how from once not having the will to get up from bed or crawl out of that feeling constant exhaustion and hollowness, she gathered herself right and worked towards curing herself. Something that she said she wanted to do for others too, and hence came about with the idea of forming the Live Laugh Love foundation.
She said, “Mental illness has presented us all with a very tough challenge. But my love hate relationship with mental illness has taught me so much. To be patient is one. That you are not alone, but most importantly that there is hope.” Deepika signed off her speech with a quote by Martin Luther King and said, “In the words of Martin Luther King, ‘Everything that is done in the world, is done by hope.'” And we would be lying if we said we didn’t feel moved by her words.
Being one of the first and fearless actors in the industry to own up to having mental health problems, that till date are looked down upon and misunderstood, Deepika Padukone did not shy away from compromising her own stardom or fan following, and came clean, so as to destigmatise the issue. And destigmatise she did. Something that the actress is now well known for, what with the kind of personal and political stand she isn’t afraid to take, or even picking up movies that go beyond just entertainment, case in point – Chhapaak. We finally have an actress amidst us who recognises the need of the hour and doesn’t mind driving that change.
From taking up an initiative to set up a foundation, spread awareness, and focus on normalising mental health problems, Deepika didn’t just open up dialogue, she went ahead and did something about it.
And all the while she contributes to the society in her own ways, we also appreciate how she doesn’t fail to contribute to her own mental peace as well. Having recently turned down the biopic of Nati Binodini, saying she needed to pick light hearted movies after how emotionally challenging Chhapaak had been for her, we were glad that she was aware enough to take care of herself and her mental health. In this line of work, when turning down an offer comes at a big opportunity cost, Deepika stayed true to her roots and gave priority to her own healing, giving us another reason to look up to her. Seems like someone is doing it right. More power to you, Deepika!