Shruti Haasan on mental health: Mind is the master controller of everything in life

Actor-singer Shruti Haasan shares why she feels the need to open up about her mental health battles and how music helps her to keep sane.
Shruti Haasan
Shruti Haasan on the need to address mental health. Image courtesy: Shruti Haasan/Instagram
Natalia Ningthoujam Published: 17 Mar 2024, 12:00 pm IST
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One in every eight people across the globe live with a mental disorder, which is characterised by a disturbance in a person’s cognition or behaviour, according to the World Health Organization. Still, not many people are willing to talk about mental health issues or approaching a therapist. Slowly and steadily, celebrities around the globe are opening up about the mental health battles, sparking much-needed discussions and discourse around this important aspect of health. In India, actor-singer Shruti Haasan has been uninhibited in sharing learnings from her own struggle.

When Shruti is not donning the greasepaint or going behind the microphone, she often addresses health issues on social media. The mental health advocate is among the few Indian celebrities who has been open about anxiety and seeking therapy. She wonders why there has been an “unnecessary stigma” around mental health. According to her, mental health needs to be in the spotlight, as the mind is the “master controller of all the things we do in our life”.

Shruti Haasan on the importance to address mental health

Whether through her social media handles or through interviews, Shruti Haasan has never shied away from talking about how mental health problems impacted her life.

Shruti Haasan
Shruti Haasan believes in all for therapy. Image courtesy: Shruti Haasan/Instagram

In an interview to Health Shots, Shruti Haasan says, “I have always spoken about mental health because the awareness around mental health and seeking therapy myself… I truly experienced its benefits. It was such a personal and important journey for me that I felt that I should be open about it and share it with others, especially because there has always been an unnecessary stigma around it.”

She feels that most people are willing to do things for their “appearance and vanity” or health like doing yoga, going to a dietician or taking a gym membership. So, she wonders why they are not willing to talk about mental health.

“If you are willing to spend time, money and energy on all these things, I wonder why you would not address mental health, which is the master controller of all the things we do in our life,” says Shruti, who briefly worked as a child artiste and then made her acting debut as an adult with the Hindi action-thriller Luck in 2009.

As for her own journey, she didn’t know she had anxiety for a long time. “I was always questioning myself as to why I was not able to function at the same capacity, and be calm as other people. To me, understanding anxiety really came to light through therapy,” shares Shruti.

During the sessions, she and her therapist talked about the tools she can apply. “We also discussed if I need medication or not… all of these discussions were to get to a place where I can deal with it (anxiety).”

Last year, on the occasion of World Mental Health Day on October 10, Shruti addressed the benefits of therapy. At the time, she wrote on Instagram, “I can’t tell you all how much I’ve benighted from therapy and talking – it completely changed my life. It is about knowing what suits you best, but it’s always important to acknowledge that there’s no weakness, only strength in helping yourself.”

Check out her post here!

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A post shared by Shruti Haasan (@shrutzhaasan)

Shruti Haasan is all for a strong support network

When it comes to mental health, a strong support network is essential. That’s because people in that network are the ones who can help you sail through hard times in life. The daughter of veteran actors Kamal Haasan and Sarika, says people in her circle, including her family or friends were “really supportive” in her journey. “They have always known how I communicate and how I try to be transparent about my journey. So they understood and were super-supportive,” says Shruti.

Shruti Haasan
Music has a special place in Shruti Haasan’s life. Image courtesy: Shruti Haasan/Instagram

Shruti Hassan on music and mental health

Music has many health benefits, and it is something that has been a big part of Shruti Haasan’s life. Apart from Hindi films such as Gabbar Is Back and Welcome Back, she has also starred in Telugu and Tamil movies, including Oh My Friend, Yevadu, Race Gurram and Vedalam. She has been entertaining her fans through music as well. The singer of tracks such as Luck Aazma, Alvida, Edge and Monster Machine, says music has been a significant part of her life.

“Music has been important to me. It is not only about sharing it with others, and feeling the love and appreciation for my voice or writing. It is personally very important to have that moment with me and the music,” she says.

Shruti also finds joy and learning in reading interviews of musicians she loves and who have had inspirational journeys. “Like Tori Amos and Chris Cornell…all of these people have been extremely open about their journeys through darkness and light. It is a big part of what inspired me to speak about my own journey,” she concludes.

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About the Author

Natalia Ningthoujam has written on various subjects - from music to films and fashion to lifestyle - as a journalist in her career that started in 2010. After getting stories from the crime scene, police headquarters, and conducting interviews with celebrities, she is now writing on health and wellness which has become her focus area. ...Read More

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