This week’s conversation is a special one. A few weeks ago I connected with NFL legend and Seattle Seahawk running back, Marshawn Lynch, to discuss mental health.
It was a great conversation – live on Uninterrupted’s Instagram page. I wanted to share it here in case you missed it.
The audio is a little subpar since it’s from Instagram, but the conversation makes up for it tenfold.
I’ve known Marshawn for years – we were with the Seattle Seahawks at the same time – and I have always loved his unique, grounded, no-bull approach to life. It was a pleasure having him on the podcast and we can all take a little bit of Beast Mode’s insights and apply them to our own lives.
“How did I get to loving myself? I stripped all my clothes off, butt-ass naked, and looked in the mirror. I told that dude I was looking at, ‘I love you. I love this. This is me.’”
In This Episode:
Shit, it’s hard enough being myself, so trying to pretend to be somebody else, I know that shit got to be like, shit, even probably 10 times harder… growing up in Oakland, it was like, you feel me, you’re going to get called out. I mean, no matter what you was going to get called out about no matter what you did. And at the end of the day it was either you own up to take ownership in who you was, you know what I mean? Or get called out for being something that you’re not. And I think just over the times and over the years of just growing up in these type of environments, you feel me, it just helped me get even more comfortable in my skin than I already was.
I grew up in a real diverse area, so it’s a fine line of, I would say, being yourself and then just being somebody who wants to be accepted by somebody because I mean, you go around a couple different crowds and don’t fit in here, and then you go over there. And I mean, I feel it’s all a process of trying to understand who you are. But I mean, I know it can get real time-consuming and emotionally draining by going out and looking for these individuals that you fit in rather than just a natural connection and it just falling into place, which is what you’ve been saying to me, like more organic or authentic or however you want to look at it. But to me it’s just shit just falls into place.
at a young age, when you’re trying to come of your own and you have so many different opportunities to see so much different shit, it can be kind of confusing. But I mean, one thing that I know that I tell my kids at our foundation, our youth center, and the ones that I come in contact with is all of that is cool, going on social media, liking this and liking that and being inspired by this and being inspired by that, but just make sure that your number one inspiration comes from when you’re able to wake up and look at that motherfucker in the mirror.
It comes from within
At the end of the day, I’ll be like, “Shawn, you feel me? How was your day today?” “I had a couple people say some shit that I probably didn’t like, but you know what? Overall, I had a great ass day.” You feel me? Body still works, still able to move around. And I go with that thought, I go with that self love, self-appreciation. And what that cost is that don’t cost nothing from no other person, from no substance, from no outside form of nothing. But besides sitting down and have a conversation with myself.
Getting rid of your labels
The number one thing that I learned in my journey. Because I mean, I’ve been called… I’m not going to say called, I’ve been labeled. I’ve been labeled “special ed,, ADD, ADHD,” all them Goddamn names that they got for kids who’ve got energy and don’t learn the Goddamn way that they taught you to learn back in the medieval times to sit down and raise your hand, all that shit. They’d label you as a menace, basically. And once you get labeled like that, it’s hard to shake those labels and they follow you. But I mean, I was labeled my whole… Shit, I left Cal with a 3.2 and was still labeled.
Asking for help
I was one of them kids. “No, I’m too proud to ask for help and I’m not going to go ask them for help. They’re already calling me stupid, they already don’t like me, this that and the third,” and then, I was just like, “You know what? Fuck it. I’ll keep failing. You know what? Help. I asked for help one time. It was the best thing for me. I asked for help for the rest of my life. I’m telling you, me, I left Cal with a 3.2 GPA. I’m like, shit you got me fucked up. If I could go and leave Cal with a 3.2 GPA, then I don’t give a fuck who you is. You could do it. Because man, I’m telling you, I’ve been labeled everything. So I mean, ask for help.
Transitioning from sport
It’s about keeping that community. Realistically, man, if you’ve got somebody to talk to, somebody that could just sit there and not even respond to you, but maybe just let you talk their ear off about some shit, man, that’ll probably be just a big help. And then, I know a lot of athletes after they leave from the game, it’s just like, woo, where is it coming from next?