45% van de mensen in de theatersector in Engeland beschrijft hun geestelijke gezondheid als slecht of matig. 20% zocht hiervoor hulp. Zorgen, podiumangst, overmatige zelfkritiek, stemmingswisselingen en depressies kwamen als belangrijkste problemen naar boven in het onderzoek.

Meer dan 5000 personen werkzaam in de “entertainment industry” beantwoordden de enquete.
Financiële druk, gebrek aan invloed op de loopbaan en gebrek aan werk waren de grootste invloedfactoren.

Mental health issues affect 20% of showbiz professionals, survey finds.

By: Matthew Hemley
One in five people working in entertainment has actively sought help for mental health issues, new research has found.
The survey, which was open to everyone in the sector and completed by more than 5,000 people, found that 46% of those who answered a question about the state of their mental health described it as either poor or average, and that 20% had actively sought help about their mental well-being.

According to the preliminary findings of the survey from Arts and Minds, a joint initiative between The Stage, Equity and Spotlight aimed at raising the awareness of mental well-being in the entertainment sector, the main issues people identified were worry, performance anxiety, severe self-criticism, mood swings and depression.
Contributing factors identified included financial pressures, lack of control over careers and a shortage of work.

The survey also found that 40% of those within the industry described their physical health as either poor or average. Most who responded were non-smokers, and had never used recreational drugs. Many high-lighted sleep problems, as well as headaches, migraines and musculoskeletal issues.
Most of those who responded had worked in the past six months.

Equity’s Louise Grainger said this debunked the perception that people with mental health problems were out of work: “The majority had worked in the past six months. That is interesting, as the stereotypical image of people not in a good state is that they are struggling and starving.”

The full findings of the research will be collated later this year, but Grainger said general points raised by respondents included a desire for training to include more awareness about the stresses in the business.
She said: “There seemed to be a real concern that younger people training today should know more about the emotional side of the industry. There is a feeling more should be done to prepare people for the up-and-down lifestyle of it all.”

Many respondents highlighted the difficulty of paying for help and lack of guidance about how to find out about what resources are available to them.
The information gathered from the survey will be used to inform a website being constructed to provide people in the sector with information on where to get help and support.

Pippa Harrison, head of client relations at Spotlight, said: “Obviously we’re just beginning the process of analysing all the survey results – but already the headlines are fascinating. With 46% of respondents describing their mental health as average or poor, it really is bleak. This is exactly why Arts and Minds is so important.”
According to the results of the survey, 81% of respondents worked in theatre.

Sam Challis, information manager at charity Mind, said the findings “show just how important it is for us all to look after our mental, as well as physical, health”.
He said one in four people each year experience a mental health problem, and added that the “pressures of the entertainment industry – for example, infrequent work, having to remember lines, being put on the spot and facing criticism – could all contribute to poor mental well-being”.
Bron: het artikel uit The Stage