Simone Biles Is A Champion

simone bilesIn an act of bravery, top U.S. gymnast Simone Biles withdrew from the Tokyo Olympic competition to prioritize her own mental health and well-being over the intense pressures and desires of others. “We also have to focus on ourselves, because at the end of the day we’re human, too. So, we have to protect our mind and our body, rather than just go out there and do what the world wants us to do,” Biles said. In recent months, we’ve also heard from other prominent athletes, including tennis champion Naomi Osaka, who pulled out of the French Open and Wimbledon earlier this year and opened up about her struggle with anxiety and depression.

For two of the most high-profile athletes to take as big a risk as they did and stand up for their mental health, they deserve the highest honors. What many do not realize is the profound impact that public admissions like these have on others who struggle with mental health. These women are helping save lives.

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, stress and mental health have taken the stage in a way it seems that has never been seen before. Many people these days are facing similar difficult choices from their stressors. Like Biles and Osaka, there are many in our communities–our friends, family, housing insecure neighbors, and others–who are struggling with anxiety, depression, and other brain disorders, like addiction.

At Momentum for Health, we provide a safe space for those in most need who struggle with their mental health. We exist to help individuals achieve mental and emotional health, discover and reach their potential, and fully participate in life. We strive for a future where mental health disorders are destigmatized and those in our communities are provided with the quality care they need to flourish. And so we celebrate leaders like Biles and Osaka who are taking risks, being vulnerable, paving the way to a more compassionate future, and demonstrating to others that they are not alone.

If you or someone you know is struggling with their mental health, please visit us at https://momentumforhealth.org/ or call 1 (800) 704-0900 for assistance in English, Mandarin, Spanish, Tagalog, and Vietnamese.