Tenille Townes Says The Pandemic Affected Her Mental Health: "There Must Be Others Who Are Feeling The Same Way”
While networking platforms have several positive perks, it seems like the negative effects are overpowering the good in today’s climate. Social media usage has spiked since the start of the Coronavirus pandemic – leaving individuals tirelessly trying to live up to unrealistic standards, consumed with negative information, and combatting social comparison.
Country newcomer Tenille Townes has first-hand experienced the harsh impacts and opened up about her battle with mental health.
When music goers scroll through Townes’ social media, they will instantly see a budding songstress living out her dream. However, the rising star recently came out of the woodwork to confirm that there is much more to her than what fans see on her highlight reel.
“There’s so much going on below the surface that nobody knows about,” the 28-year-old shared with PEOPLE. “My natural slate and posture are that everything is always bright and shiny, and that’s my favorite way to be, but I’m learning that’s not the only way to be. It’s OK to not be OK sometimes,” she stressed in the exclusive interview.
Therefore, when the global health crisis brought live music to a sudden halt and dramatically changed society as a whole, the “Come as You Are” singer found herself with more time on her hands and stuck in a rut.
“There was nowhere to run from the feeling of being anxious about the state of the world,” said Townes. “I felt like I was going insane in my house, feeling completely worried and anxious and scared. But I was constantly asking myself, ‘What do I do with this?’”
The female powerhouse continued to mention that she often turned to music to escape reality and used it as a mechanism to release her negative built-up energy.
“I’m so glad that music was a place where I could put it all in. It always gives me a way to take a hot air balloon ride of sorts, where I can just float above the situation and see it from a higher vantage point,” she added.
While being isolated from the world – the Canadian country artist quickly found that pulling from real-life experiences, penning her truth, and sharing who she is on the inside became “healing.” Her relatable lyrics that make up each story-like song have also received praise from fans worldwide.
“That’s what I love the most about songwriting is it can kind of just pull me out of something to look at it differently,” she told the publication. “I know that if it’s something I’m feeling, there must be others who are feeling the same way with me,” she added before using her current release, "When’s It Gonna Happen,” as an example.
Townes continued to emphasize that she penned the vulnerable track because she often found herself getting upset when she received another wedding invitation in the mail. “Most of my friends are getting married, and I wanted to write a song about how I feel being single sometimes,” she said.
“This song means so much to me and I’m so thankful you made this,” an Instagram user commented under a video featuring the heartfelt anthem. “You’re (definitely) not alone! This song is my life…thank you for writing it,” said another.
While the hitmaker finds her songwriting approach “terrifying” at times, she hopes her community feels heard and finds comfort while listening to her relatable music.
“I didn’t necessarily intend for the music that I’ve been working on lately to be coming out so much more personal, but it definitely just is,” she confessed to PEOPLE. “When I really think about the heart of what I want my music to do, it’s really about giving people permission to just completely show up and be all the sides of who they are,” she added while also highlighting that she believes everything happens for a reason.
The award-winning musician is currently connecting with fans on a personal level on her headlining Villain In Me Tour. While touching hearts nationwide, the sing-songwriter is gearing up to pack her bags to bring her music overseas to Ireland and the UK. Tickets to see Tenille Townes is currently available for purchase, here.