OVER THE BRIDGE is a Canadian non-profit organization created by a board of directors that offers awareness of mental health and addiction education and support resources with a special focus on the music industry personnel.

To achieve our mission statement, it is imperative that Over The Bridge integrates and coordinates a strong collaborative effort between addiction and mental health professionals, programs, organizations and musicians, road crew and other music industry personnel both at a local and touring level. This will improve the experiences of music industry personnel and will lead to improved quality of life and health both within and outside of the working music industry workplace.

Objectives / Action

  • Develop and produce addiction and mental health studies focused on music industry personnel
  • Develop voting polls to gather popular music industry opinions
  • Facebook group: Currently at 1,100 members, the OTB FB group creates a safe place for people to ask questions, seek and show peer-peer support.
  • Distribute local and national mental health and addictions help resource to venues across North America
  • Produce a film documentary that will interview musicians and music industry professionals and capture stories of their addictions and or mental health experiences, How either has affected their personal and professional lives and the people around them directly or indirectly.
  • Project T-shirt: This is a collaborative branding and awareness project; OTB and artist/bands collaborate on a limited edition T-shirt design to create awareness of OTB goals and objectives.


  • Our goal is to use reliable data and information we have gathered to fuel and create:
  • Normalize addiction and mental health conversation amongst people in the music industry
  • Generate music industry focused addiction and mental health training, educational events, literature, advertisements, speakers, keynotes, and/or workshops at venues, conferences, festivals, and tours.
  • We will strive to make it easier for the music industry to gain access to crisis support resources to venues, conferences, festivals, and tours, online and in print to help people find the support they need
  • We will respect, inform and involve the music industry in our research about addictions and mental health
  • Enhancing awareness of addiction and mental health education and support recourses by increasing alliances and collaborations
  • Create financial, educational and marketing collaborative opportunities with organizations who share the same Over the Bridge mission.

The Over The Bridge board of directors thank you for your support. Please take a look around and send us any feedback at

Donate Today

Donate to Over The Bridge today to help us create more awareness of mental health and addiction education, and support resources within the music industry.


Strike A Chord Discussion Spoke Volumes On Mental Wellness in the Entertainment Industry 


In July 2017, the music world tragically and abruptly lost the lead singer of Linkin Park, Chester Bennington. Born out of tragedy, on January 31, 2018, the Strike A Chord Discussion at Live Nation Canada focused on mental wellness in the entertainment industry and specific actions to take better care of ourselves and each other.

While working in the entertainment industry is rewarding, the lifestyle itself creates challenges to our mental health. The constantly evolving industry creates a high-pressure, stressful environment where we tend to place our entire well being on the back burner as a matter of course.

High stress, lack of sleep, chronic jet lag, poor eating habits, and a lack of exercise are just a few of the challenges touring professionals deal with on a daily basis. A 2017 American business traveler study from On Call International found that ⅓ of road warriors experience higher than normal stress levels, causing several issues including the growth or worsening of depression and anxiety.

In response to the growing number of individuals who are emotionally suffering, Live Nation CanadaBell Let’s TalkWarner Music CanadaCanadian Event Safety and Event Safety Alliance (ESA) teamed up to spread mental health awareness and voice a new approach for people to easily find the help they deserve.

Those participating in the panel were those closest to Chester, including Talinda Bennington, Chester’s wife; Anna Shinoda, Author and Chester’s band mate’s wife; ESA Chairman Jim Digby, Director of Touring and Production for Linkin Park; and Joey “Vendetta” Scoleri, Head of Industry Relations of Live Nation Canada. Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, Ph.D., Founder and President of Give An Hour also joined the event. Give an Hour leads the Campaign to Change Direction and is now working closely with Talinda Bennington to reach those who are in need of mental health care and support.

In addition to the organizations previously listed, attendees of the private event included The AFC, a company that provides emergency funding for Canada’s entertainment industry; OVER THE BRIDGE, a nonprofit dedicated to mental health and addiction awareness and support resources; and TourReady, Inc., a partner of the ESA working to spread the Canadian initiatives on mental health awareness and actions in the United States.

The group disclosed personal experiences in order to discuss how to talk about mental health; recognize warning signs, changes in behaviors and triggers; seek support for ourselves; and how to help those surrounding us who are suffering emotionally and/or dealing with addiction.

Live entertainment individuals gathered before the panel hoping to make a lasting change across the industry in the aftermath of the loss of Chester. We hope to heal ourselves and those in need. The discussion on mental health has well begun reaching higher volumes and has sparked the world to listen more than ever before. People are finally talking.

Live Nation Canada furnished the discussion room with round tables, chairs, comfortable red couches and coffee tables. Each table displayed several handouts of a graphic picturing the Campaign to Change Direction’s Five Signs of someone who suffers from emotional pain and might need support.

Samantha Slattery, co-chair and executive director of Capital Presents opened the event alongside Janet Sellery, co-chair and health & safety consultant of Sellery Health + Safety.

Digging deep into sensitive topics, Sellery reminded the audience to excuse themselves if anyone is left feeling vulnerable, and offered an on-site psychotherapist for support. Digby advised the audience to take a deep breath before diving into the crucial discussion.

“We Let Our Guard Down”

There had been no overt signs prior to the loss of Chester, Digby said. The Linkin Park Family welcomed Digby in 2002, throughout the journey the family ideal continually evolved to it’s most recent place of nearly perfect. Chester’s sudden passing devastated the entire family who never saw this coming.

Not only did grief and shock overwhelm the LP family, but also their dedicated and loyal fans. The difficult lyrics, Digby said, spoke to fans in a uniquely genuine way. Fans coped with the loss of their hero heavily through social media, supporting one another through asking for help in their own lives.

The most important and alarming factor is that depression rarely has a face. There are very few “tells” and in some cases none. Though after the fact we can sometimes see indications – or “signs” of the pain or suffering that was hidden.

Some of Chester’s inner demons were known over the years and had played a crucial part of who he was. However, during the months preceding his loss it appeared as though he had things under control. “In fact,” Digby said, “this was the best, and most in control Chester we had ever seen.”

The discussion presented a home video of a seemingly joyful Chester in good spirits playing The Jelly Bean Challenge with loved ones.  Digby challenged the audience to identify anything out of the ordinary in the video. No one could.

The video was shot only 36 hours before his passing.

“Our guard was down,” Digby said. “He was presenting himself as newly transformed and completely in control.”

Musicians are far too familiar with experiencing emotional ups and downs. With each performance comes the body’s own natural high. The artist connects with the audience, the audience adornment produces a chemical response including dopamine, adrenalin and cortisol, all of which need to be managed, Digby said.

Not only do artists experience these highs, but also crew members behind the scenes will and do as well in their excitement over the thrill of the job. OVER THE BRIDGE recognizes the wide range of industry professionals who may experience similar mental health challenges, including but not limited to, “musicians, booking agents, venue owners, event security, hospitality personnel, bus/truck drivers, and local crew and touring crew.”

The problem occurs when the show is over, the hotel door shuts and the lights turn off. What happens after experiencing such a huge high followed by the quietness of a hotel room or bus bunk? Sometimes to continue reveling in the euphoric rush, substance use or other addictive behaviors become normalized.

Despite the anecdotal reports of post-performance lows and substance use and addiction to combat these lows, there is a lack of research to back the important issues that have become very normalized amongst musicians.

Ace Piva of OVER THE BRIDGE and his research team designed a study that measures musician post-performance mood response and how those individuals manage, cope and celebrate those emotions. The team is currently sorting through the collected data of the study produced under the supervision of McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.

“It is our duty to acknowledge it and make it ok to talk about it to try and help others help themselves or someone they care about,” Digby said. “That’s why we’re here.”

“What Did I Miss?”

Although Talinda and Chester were inseparable from the start, the two began as emotionally unhealthy in their own, separate ways. He had struggled with depression and addiction in the past, something Talinda had strived again and again to understand from her perspective – a totally unknown territory.

“We can seem so normal and so okay, and then not be okay – in an instant,” Talinda said.

At the time of his passing, Chester had practiced sobriety for six months and was also enrolled in an outpatient treatment program.

Any relapse in the past resulted in utmost, indescribable shame within Chester.  In addition to overwhelming shame, Talinda recalled the ongoing pressure Chester experienced throughout his musical career. With each album success came the pressure to achieve an even higher success on the next album, while at the same time fighting hard for self-improvement.

His loved ones will remain unaware of Chester’s thought process during his final moments, but the only things to blame are disease, addiction and mental illness. What are some of the issues victims’ loved ones experience in the aftermath of a tragic loss such as Chester’s?

To answer this question, TourReady spoke to Van Dahlen, who, through Give an Hour, created a national network of volunteer mental health professionals who provide free and confidential mental health care to those in need including those who serve, veterans and their families.

The grief survived loved ones are left with, Van Dahlen told TourReady, is overwhelming and they wish to undo it.

“Survivors guilt,” she said, “is an actual phenomenon that we frequently see when someone dies by suicide, when there are traumas, natural disasters occur, or in the aftermath of an mass shooting.”

Both survivors and loved ones live with thoughts such as, “What did I miss?”; “Could I have prevented it?”;  “Recognized it?”; and, “Could I have seen it coming?”

The answer is that it is typically extremely difficult to prevent these traumas or tragedies.

“Ninety-nine percent of the time,” Van Dahlen continued, “the survivor couldn’t have changed [the outcome] or stopped it.”

Following the immediate aftermath, these feelings are normal and understandable. However, people will have to judge how well they can tolerate [those feelings], Van Dahlen said.

“When a survivor’s grief becomes unremitting and begins to preoccupy the individual throughout the day or late at night, people deserve proper care, support and attention to work through these feelings and reactions so that they can move on,” Van Dahlen said.

Instead of attempting to answer the why we must understand his passing as a recipe for a tragic final conclusion.

“Typically, there are multiple factors that contribute to someone’s death by suicide. In Chester’s case it may have been past traumas, the impact of addition and the loss of his close friend, Chris Cornell – how these all fit together, for Chester, we will likely never know,” Van Dahlen said.

Remaining stuck in the endlessly tangled search for answers will solely result in significant suffering within the individuals who are left behind.

Based on what we know from those closest to him, the years of untreated mental health and substance abuse led to his loss against the battle of mental health.

Thanks to the individuals who shared their experiences at Strike A Chord, the music industry continues to take a huge step forward to remove the stigma surrounding mental health, in hopes of changing the culture for future generations to come.

Changing the Culture

The stigma associated with mental health, mental illness and addiction contributes to the overwhelming emotional suffering within the individual.

Shinoda shared an entry on her personal blog the embarrassment she felt and costs associated with mental health that she, too, suffered with prior to finding what methods work best.

Shinoda discussed the issue of the mental health stigma that turns people away from seeking the attention they deserve. One simple way we can combat the stigma is to change the language we use in society when discussing mental health.

She introduced the phrase committed suicide alone heavily weighs blame on the victim for a tragic end of his or her emotional suffering. If instead, we begin to say died by suicide, we recognize a very real, fatal outcome for untreated mental illnesses.

We need to change the culture. It can feel embarrassing, and the time it takes to navigate affordable resources heightens the stigma, leaving a threat to mental wellbeing untreated. Moving beyond the stigma takes effort from everyone to look after one another in support.

Talinda said something that will resonate with me for the years to come: “When we ask ‘how are you,’ are we really asking, ‘how are you?’”

Think about the last time someone asked you this question, and what their response might have been. Did they ignore your answer? Did they look in the other direction? Did they walk away from you?  If the answer is yes to any of these questions, then you know the abrupt exchange was not a positive one.

Again, we may seem so normal but we aren’t always okay.

Talinda teamed up with Give an Hour and the Campaign to Change Direction to launch a new initiative in honor of Chester’s life, 320 Changes Direction.

Being able to speak openly about these struggles encourages those in need to seek the care they deserve. This is one of the two needs the Campaign to Change Direction and 320 Changes Direction initiative aims to satisfy.

By first changing the culture of mental health, Change Direction and Talinda seek to build a new approach for those suffering to easily find help they need and deserve. In this industry, checking in with each other – caring for each other’s mental wellbeing – is crucial.

When the Campaign to Change Direction launched on March 2, 2015, their 50 partners, and now 320 Changes Direction, have pledged to educate the world about the Five Signs of emotional suffering in order to launch a public health effort for everyone – to encourage all of us to care for our emotional well being. With one in five Americans dealing with a mental health challenge, it is no surprise First Lady Michelle Obama helped launch the campaign as their keynote speaker in Washington, D.C.

Van Dahlen compared knowing the signs of a heart attack equally as important as recognizing the signs of emotional suffering.

“We would never say ‘suck it up’ to cancer,” Van Dahlen continued, “so why would we [say that] to someone who is emotionally suffering?”

Changing this stigma also lies in the hands of parents who should encourage their children to think and talk about their emotional wellbeing.

“We teach them about issues such as drugs and sex but we don’t spend a whole lot of time helping them grow emotionally fit,” Van Dahlen said. She made the argument emotional wellbeing is a bedrock for success in life, healthy relationships, families and communities.

Putting time and energy into the prevention of emotional suffering is a great start to ensuring our children are emotionally healthy to begin with.

There is hope for new pathways, Van Dahlen continued, but there is no pill to fix a mental health challenge. Although there are pills to aid mental suffering, such as an aid in sleep after a post-traumatic event, one still needs to put in the work.

Seeking Self-Help

To understand the difference between an emotionally suffering individual and one who is not, each individual’s brain differs widely from the rest. Humans have yet to understand how each and every brain works in its entirety – but this is ok because there is a lot we do know about how our brains contribute to our feelings and our behaviors.

Along with the movement to drive culture change, the second goal of these amazing organizations aims to create a new approach to guarantee easy access in finding help whenever necessary.

The ability to help ourselves is what we do understand. Humans have the capability to heal and change behavior patterns, Van Dahlen said.

During the struggle of his own mental health journey, Scoleri compared the incessant rumination plagued over his brain to spiders searching for every negative thought imaginable.

To help himself, other habits Scoleri currently practices include meditation, exercise, avoiding caffeine/alcohol, eating clean, eliminating social media, turning one’s phone off two hours prior to bed, and much more he listed on a convenient handout at the discussion.

The problem is, Scoleri revealed, is no one provided his personal list of tips for him. He had to recognize his own need for help and work for it.

The panel then displayed a quote by Maya Angelou:

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”

Mental health awareness training, Digby said, is a good idea. We have already seen both Canada and the UK jump ahead with government funding toward mental health first aid. And the Campaign to Change Direction launched the Five Healthy Habits of Emotional Well-being that we can all learn and practice on

Bell Let’s Talk has created their own five ways to end the stigma around mental illness, described on the home page of their website.

More industry specific, the AFC, formerly known as the Actors Fund of Canada, is described as the lifeline for Canada’s entertainment industry. Each year, the organization distributes $500,000 in emergency financial aid to help all entertainment industry professionals suffering from injury, illness or other personal hardships.

In addition to OVER THE BRIDGE currently sorting data from the post-performance mood response study, they have collected local mental health programs and resources, entertainment support and national crisis support/distress lines on their website, and

The mental health conversation in the American entertainment industry has recently jumped on board. When asking Van Dahlen about organizations leading the conversation, she credited Live Nation and Warner Music for seizing the opportunity to build a movement within the music industry to address needs of artists, industry professionals behind the scenes and fans.

The Recording Academy MusiCares brings awareness to music industry professionals suffering from co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders and uses their platform to educate us on programs available across the nation.

Change Direction’s partnerships with Talinda through 320 Changes Direction, various artists and groups, Live Nation, the industry standards Digby continues to develop, and the supporting organizations at Strike A Chord are all faced with a huge opportunity to elevate this important issue.

The resources are here. But it takes the individual to recognize and help him or herself as a first step in order to utilize the resources. And people in this world have the right to take care of themselves.

Shortly before Chester passed, a veteran had given him a dog tag Talinda wore around her neck bearing a message for all of us.

Without courage, wisdom bears no fruit,” Talinda read. “I found this after he passed, at a time when I needed to hear it the most. So I want to pass that to you. Now you know – we’ve shared this wisdom with you, but it takes courage. And I wish that courage to every one of you to take care of yourselves.”

Bell Let’s Talk Day 2018 resulted in over 130,000 online interactions and raised $6,919,199 dedicated to mental health in Canada becoming a stigma-free country.

Learning Resources

To learn more about the Five Signs of Emotional Suffering and pledge to share the Signs, visit The Campaign to Change Direction:

To learn more about mental health conditions visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI):

To learn more about mental health organizations and statistics worldwide visit World Health Organization (WHO):


National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

Text SIGNS to 741741 for the Crisis Text Line

Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): 1-800-487-4889

By: Dana Janssen, TourReady, Inc.

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Unison Fund: Indie Week Toronto, Health & Wellness Day Recap

On Friday, November 10th Unison was thrilled to be a part of Indie Week’s Health & Wellness Day with a whole afternoon of panels, workshops and conversations focused on combating addiction and mental illness and staying healthy in the music industry. Greatly expanded from a single hour-long panel in 2016, Indie Week assembled a line up of panellists and speakers who brought incredible frankness about their personal struggles, successes and advice on staying physically and mentally healthy while touring, performing and building a career in music.

The day’s highlight was the feature panel with Chuck Randall (tour manager for Alice in Chains / The Cult) and Martin Atkins (Nine Inch Nails, Public Image Ltd.) two experts on making it through a life on the road. Randall addressed his own sobriety — which he called the greatest gift of his life — and the insight it’s given him to connect with others who are struggling. “It’s easy for me to see it when I see the indications,” Randall said. “Why?  Because I was there. The 80’s almost killed me with copious amounts of cocaine, alcohol and prescription drugs… It’s not difficult to spot another addict down the hallway if you are one.”

“What do I do? I knock on the window. When a window opens, crawl through it. When I get that moment, to have a one-on-one to talk to them, I share what happened to me, not what is happening to them. I share what happened to me in maybe a way they can relate too.”

Both Randall and Atkins took time to reiterate advice that was heard throughout the day, and focus on the importance of self-care and having a routine you can turn too to keep yourself balanced. “The most dangerous days are the days off.” Akin’s observed when asked how to deal with the downtime on the bus, or at the airport, when tensions and anxieties can rise between bandmates or in your own mind. There is a rhythm to the show day, and there is adrenaline… Then you come to a non-show day, you’ve got the alcohol, but there is no adrenaline. People start bouncing off the walls. So, I like to keep everyone busy, but that can have it’s own exhaustive element… You’ve got to find the line.”

In the end, Randall reminded everyone that when their tank is empty, it needs to be filled: I have to take care of me. I am not effective for my artists or anyone else on the road if I am not spiritually, emotionally and physically fit.”

“It’s an inside job guys. Take care of yourself.”


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Mastering the Post-Performance Blues

It is moments before the show, and you are nervous. You reflect on the many hours of prepping for this special performance.You have invested a lot of time and energy. Anxiety and jitters set in, and you just want to get out and play. Finally you are on stage and your band starts to play the first song; your body and soul are flooded with excitement. You breathe in the energy from the audience. Being on stage brings the satisfaction that you are doing what you were born to do.

The last song is played, the curtain closed, and the audience goes home. You are left with a gloomy, sad feeling inside—a sense of emptiness. You wonder, “What’s wrong with me? I was having the time of my life, and now I just feel…hollow.” Does this sound familiar?

This phenomenon is known as Post-Performance Depression (PPD), and it can be experienced by all types of performers from athletes to singers, speakers to drummers. Even a seasoned performer who does not have nervousness or stress leading up to the show can experience signs and symptoms of PPD. When the body experiences major shifts in mood, it is flooded with several different neurotransmitters (dopamine and serotonin, just to name a few), resulting in a bio-chemical release that leads to a feeling of ecstasy and excitement. After these moments the nervous system needs time to recalibrate itself to prepare for another release. After an exciting performance the body starts to balance out the level of neurotransmitters, and therefore it is not releasing the same level that caused the exciting feelings, resulting in the lingering sadness. In normal day-to-day life, biochemicals are released and rest/recovery follow, causing the typical ups and downs of life. In the case of PPD, the process is more extreme with higher highs and lower lows.There are some skills that everyone can use to manage moments like these. Here is a few:

Marsha Linehan, the creator of Dialectal Behavioral Therapy, teaches that one can curb the natural vulnerability to emotional stability by properly sleeping for eight hours, eating healthy, and exercising. Just as two-year-olds
are more likely to have temper tantrums when they are hungry or sleepy, musicians and athletes are more likely to be emotionally vulnerable if their basic needs have not been cared for. Balancing out sleep, healthy eating,
etc., will allow you to have more emotional control, thus allowing more control over the emotional swings of PPD.

When we experience an emotion, we only feel it for a matter of seconds. The reason we typically continue to feel the emotion is because we feed into it. We have thoughts, actions, and behaviors that fan the flames of the emotions. I often tell my clients, “Emotions are neither fact nor fiction, but feedback.” Emotions are designed to communicate information very quickly, and if we are not addressing them, the message the emotions are sending will continue to communicate until we acknowledge that message.

So if we ignore the message the emotions are sending or we condemn the message by saying it “should” be this way or “I shouldn’t feel this,” the emotion system will communicate its message even more intensely. For example, if we are having the after-performance blues and the PPD feelings set in, we start saying to ourselves, “Why can’t I shake this?” or “This is not what I want,” or “I ought to be having fun after such a great show. What is wrong with me?” These thoughts could cause the emotions to send their message more intensely.

On the other hand, if we take the time and validate the feelings by figuring out the message the emotional system is sending, we can end the cycle that’s fueling the emotional flames. When experiencing PPD, take the time to try and understand what is going on and why you feel the way you do. Ask yourself, “What is being communicated to me by my emotions?” Validate the emotions and experiences so they do not continue to send the message again and again. Label the feelings and describe the situation. In so doing, you will be able to make sense of the situation. For example, when feeling down after a performance one could say, “I have been staying up really late recently, and I am going from extreme highs to extreme lows. No wonder I am feeling so down right now,” or, “I really enjoyed that experience; no wonder I am feeling down now that it is over.” Avoid labeling the emotions as awful or unbearable. That will just feed the intense emotion cycle. The more you learn to be “okay” and are able to sit with the feelings and notice them, the sooner you will be able to handle them and they will linger less. Some people may feel like this sounds really “Pollyannaish,” but it is backed by a large body of research on thoughts and emotional restructuring. This should empower individuals to take charge of their emotional experience, instead of letting their emotions overtake them.

There is scientific evidence that our body positions and facial expressions correlate with our emotional state. In fact, Dr. Paul Ekman, a psychologist who has studied the connection between emotions and facial expressions, has found that if we change our facial expressions, we can change our emotional experience. He discovered this serendipitously while trying to find which muscles one uses to make anger and sad feelings. He noticed that after trying to mimic the facial expressions, he started to feel the emotions he was attempting to imitate. The important thing to note here is that we have more control over our emotional state than we think. Change your facial expressions and body postures and you will change your emotional state.

William James, one of the first educators of psychology, put it this way: “Actions seem to follow feeling, but really actions and feeling go together; and by regulating the action, which is under the more direct control of the will,
we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not. Thus the sovereign voluntary path to cheerfulness, if our cheerfulness be lost, is to sit up cheerfully and to act and speak as if cheerfulness were already there.
So the next time you feel the PPD blues, put on a smile, sit up, and act cheerful. You are in more control then you think you are!

As mentioned above, our thoughts and behaviors fan the flames of our emotional state. We need to be mindful of what we are
saying to ourselves after the show. One could be negatively judging his or her personal performance, thinking it was awful or by saying something like, “I am depressed it is over !” or, “No show will ever be as great.” People play these types of thoughts over and over again like a tape recorder in their inner and outer dialog. That is what continues the PPD cycle. Be aware of these thought patterns and replace them with positive affirmations, or reframe how you are seeing the situation.

Replace “I am depressed it is over” with “I am glad for the opportunity to play in front of a great crowd.” Replace “No show will ever be as great” with “That was a great show. The band will have other good shows, too.
Research shows that replacing a thought, or even stopping a thought, helps with such situations. Take a non-judgmental stance, repeat the positive affirmation in your head, and replace the negative comments. Google the word “affirmations” and you will find tons of them online. Have a pre-made list of phrases before you start to experience PPD. Trying to come up with a list of positive affirmations when you are feeling down is pretty difficult. Repeat them even if you do not believe them. Say them until you believe them.

We have all heard the sayings “moderation in all things” or “find balance in your life.” If music and performance are the only things in your life, it is no wonder that after a show you are depressed, because you feel that when the show is over, there is nothing else in your life. If you particularly struggle with PPD, plan something active the next day or after the show—something you will look forward to doing. Commit yourself to do it and follow through with your plans. For example, read a good book, or watch your favorite movie or T.V. show. Have a plan that does not include drugs, violence, or other harmful and addictive
behaviors. If you struggle with PPD, read the book or watch the show just before the suspenseful part, and then go perform; by doing this you will have created something to look forward to. Follow through with your commitment, even if you do not feel like it.

Henry David Thoreau once wrote, “I trust that none will stretch the seams in putting on the coat, for it may do good service to him whom it fits.” If these skills are not a good fit for dealing with your level of PDD, seek professional help from your physician or therapist to find something that will fit and work. These skills are just a few from many that can help you manage PDD. Keep in mind that managing PDD is not about perfection but progression, so outdo your yesterday with today by mastering these skills.

John C. Buckner received his master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at the The University of Louisiana at Monroe. He is Dean of Students at Mountain Springs Preparatory Academy and has a small private practice. For more information on topics of personal growth and leadership, visit John’s website at www. PLEASE LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK AND LEAVE A COMMENT!
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320 Change Direction‘s Talinda Bennington wants us to learn the five signs of emotional suffering so you can recognize them in yourself or help a loved one who may be in emotional pain. The five signs are personality change, agitation, withdrawal, decline in personal care, and hopelessness. Someone may exhibit one or more signs.

“For 13 years I watched my husband Chester struggle with depression and substance use,” says Talinda.  “I often felt scared and alone. I was uneducated about the challenges he faced and I wanted information, but finding answers to my questions and available help for our family was very difficult. After my husband lost his battle with depression and addiction, I knew I had to make a change to the mental health landscape. I began speaking to as many mental health groups as I could find. Whitney Showler and Music For Relief have been very supportive and helpful on this journey.”

“So here is what I learned: We don’t need to create more programs, there are good ones out there. But we do need to do two things. We need to streamline access to the help that is available. And we need to change the culture of mental health so that those in need, and their family members, are able to speak openly about their struggles so they can seek the care they deserve.”

On January 31, 2018 at the Canadian Event Safety Summit sponsored by the “Bell, Lets Talk” National Mental Health Awareness Day program, Talinda discussed mental illness and what she’s learned since Chester’s death.

“He struggled with addiction and depression, two things I have never struggled with,” she explains. “Over time, I came to learn that taking care of your mental health is as important as taking care of your physical health. When Chester died, it was a complete surprise. We had a very dear friend, Chris Cornell, take his life, and I felt, ‘OK, Chester sees what Vicky and the kids are going through, and this would never happen.’ So we went on a family trip . . . my husband was full of life. He was very excited to be promoting his new album, so he was happy. He gave me his goodbye, he gave my kids his goodbye, and I never saw him again.” Along Talinda’s journey she has learned to remember, “It’s not my fault, it’s not my children’s fault, it’s not the band’s faults—it’s nobody’s fault.

For more music industry  mental health, addictions, news, education and support resources visit

5 Signs

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