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9 Artists & Actors Who Speak Openly About Anxiety

From Sia and Adele to Oprah and Korn's Jonathan Davis, these artists and actors speak candidly about their mental difference

1 / 9

Sia

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 18: Recording artist Sia performs onstage at A+E Networks "Shining A Light" concert at The Shrine
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for A+E Networks

Sia's biggest single to date, "Chandelier," is actually a really dark pop hit, one that deals with her pretty well documented battle with alcohol and drug abuse. The source of her use was social anxiety: She was self-medicating for a while, and it was super dangerous. We appreciate her bravery in sharing her story!

2 / 9

Adele

THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0373 -- Pictured: Douglas Gorenstein/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
Douglas Gorenstein/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Adele's anxiety is performance-driven. According to BuzzFeed, the singer admits to hating festivals: "I will not do festivals. The thought of an audience that big frightens the life out of me. I don’t think the music would work either. It’s all too slow. I’d hate to book a festival and have a fucking anxiety attack and then not go on stage."

3 / 9

Ellie Goulding

VERONA, ITALY - OCTOBER 09: Singer Ellie Goulding performs on stage during the Intimissimi On Ice 2015 Show on October 9, 201
Venturelli/Getty Images

Ellie Goulding has sought out, telling the British edition of Cosmopolitan

"It was the weird time of my life. Sick, horrible things would go through my mind but I didn't want to draw attention to myself. ... It got to the point where I couldn't even get into the car and go to the studio."

4 / 9

Taylor Swift

SHANGHAI, CHINA - NOVEMBER 10: (CHINA OUT) Taylor Swift performs live on stage during the 1989 World Tour Live at Mercedes-Be
Chen He/ChinaFotoPress via Getty Images

Taylor Swift once documented her insecurities to the English publication NME saying:

"And it can feel, at times, if you let your anxiety get the better of you, like everybody’s waiting for you to really mess up—and then you’ll be done. A lot of the time I need to call my mom and talk for a really long time, just to remind myself of all the things that are great and all the things that matter. If you do something that defines your character to be not what the public thought you were, that’s the biggest risk.”

5 / 9

Jennifer Lawrence

MADRID, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 26: Jennifer Lawrence attends 'El Hormiguero' Tv show at Vertice Studio on November 26, 2015 in Madr
Juan Naharro Gimenez/WireImage

As a teen, Jennifer Lawrence battled social anxiety, telling France's Madame

"When my mother told me about my childhood, she always told me that there was a light in me, a spark that inspired me constantly. When I started school, the light went out. It was never known what it was, a kind of social anxiety."

6 / 9

Oprah

SANTA MONICA, CA - JANUARY 16: Oprah Winfrey arrives at the 19th Annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards at Barker Hangar on Janu
C Flanigan/Getty Images

Even Oprah has experienced anxiety! She told Access Hollywood: 

"In the beginning, it was just sort of speeding and a kind of numbness and going from one thing to the next thing to the next thing. I will tell you when I realized that I thought, 'All right, if I don't calm down I'm gonna be in serious trouble.' I was in the middle of doing voiceovers, you know? And I remember closing my eyes in between each page because looking at the page and the words at the same time was too much stimulation for my brain."

7 / 9

John Mayer

TINLEY PARK, IL  - JULY 18: Singer John Mayer at the First Midwest Bank Ampitheater on July 18, 2008 in Tinley Park, Illinois
Paul Natkin/Wire Image

John Mayer has admitted to experiencing anxiety, with his friend Joe Beleznay telling Rolling Stone

"I would get anxiety attacks too, and we would talk each other down. It was heart palpitations, shortness of breath, coldness and shivers, strange stuff, and we'd be like, 'You're totally fine. You're not having a heart attack.' His mind works at such speed that I think he would sort of second-guess his sanity at times.”

8 / 9

Miley Cyrus

INGLEWOOD, CA - AUGUST 24: Singer Miley Cyrus arrives at the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards at The Forum on August 24, 2014 in I
Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic

Miley Cyrus told Elle Magazine she has experienced anxiety and depression:

"When I went through a really intense breakup—you know, I was engaged—and when I was with [Liam Hemsworth] or when I was on Disney, the thing that gave me the most anxiety was not knowing what to do with myself when Disney wasn’t there to carry me anymore or if I didn't have him."

9 / 9

Jonathan Davis

SAN BERNARDINO, CA - MARCH 03:  Jonathan Davis of Korn backstage at the 2012 Cypress Hill Smokeout Festival at NOS Events Cen
Gabriel Olsen

It's not only pop stars: Jonathan Davis of Korn fame used to experience anxiety attacks, telling Kerrang! in 1996, in tandem with the release of Korn's second album, Life Is Peachy:

“I’m having major anxiety attacks at the moment. I don’t know what this album unlocked, but shit’s starting to come out and mentally I can’t handle it. I have to go to a doctor now for pills—a sedative to keep my heartbeat regular. When I have these attacks, my heart starts to palpitate and freak out and...shit, I dunno what it is, but I just have to go with it. ... It feels like I’m going to fucking die. It’s like your head’s crawling up your asshole, and you just wanna get into a ball so fucking tight that you die. You can’t think, you don’t know what’s happening. I conquered it once before, but now it’s coming back and happening for no reason. There were triggers before, but now the attacks are just happening. I decided that I had to get this shit taken care of with just a little sedative. Because once it starts, I can’t turn back. It’s like turning your car’s engine on and busting the key in the ignition, and not being able to turn it off until the gas runs out…”

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