My dream is to work in comedy, specifically in the writing and creative process behind all things funny. I have done a lot of acting and improv over the years but my real passion is writing and creating. Something interesting happens when you tell people that you want to be a comedian, I have found that you are met with many expectations and judgments as well as a bizarre stigma that goes along with finding yourself funny, which in turn is kind of funny. At first I found this problematic and discouraging but I have grown to see these expectations as empowering challenges that drive me to work harder. I am a firm believer in the benefits of comedy for both individual mental health and also as social commentary and satire of important issues.
I mention all of this because laughing and being happy and creating funny stuff does not always come easy for me. From the ages of sixteen to nineteen I suffered three major concussions (from soccer of all things) that changed the way my brain and body works in a lot of ways. Not only have I been limited in my athletic capabilities but I have also been living with mood disorders that have led to episodes of depression that have hurt me and those in my life. Comedy and laughter is my favourite thing in the world and when I find myself struggling to enjoy and experiences these things is when I am at my lowest.
I strongly believe that having a passion is so important to your mental health. It really doesn’t matter what it is; it could be fishing, music, dance, puzzles or even comedy. In my experience it’s the things that I am most passionate about that are able to pull me through the roughest periods. Of course I’m not saying that this is not a cure for depression, if only it were that simple, but I do believe that finding a true passion can go a long way to keeping happy and mentally well. I urge everyone to find their passion, be proud of it and lean on it to bring you up when you are feeling down.
Of course I must mention the other side of the passion coin that I have experienced. This comes when you are feeling so low that even your passion can’t pull you up, it can be debilitating when the few things that you can usually count on to bring you up, don’t. I think that this is why it is so important to talk to people about your mental health and not be afraid to be down because in these situations, at the lowest lows, I have found that interacting with people who understand what you are going through and have your best interest in mind can do wonders and give you the bump you need.
I am extremely excited to be a part of this great team at Wear Your Label and would love to hear about any comments or responses any one may have to what I have written about.
- JACOB -