‘Wish I had done this 10 or 20 years ago’


Simon Cowell gets candid about therapy: Wish I had done this 10 or 20 years ago
Simon Cowell gets candid about therapy: ‘Wish I had done this 10 or 20 years ago’

Simon Cowell regrets delaying his first attempt at mental health counselling until this late in life.

The America’s Got Talent creator, 63, shares his experience during the episode of The Mirror’s Men in Mind podcast, produced in collaboration with the mental health Mind. He said “COVID was the real catalyst,” of depression.

“I’ve suffered from depression over the years… but that was just something I just thought, ‘Well, that’s my character trait. I get down,’ and it’s something you deal with,” Cowell later said.

Cowell explained, “I wish I had done this 10 or 20 years ago…it’s like a weight has lifted off my shoulders.” He credits the “super positive effect” of therapy on his life. Therapy inspired him to ban his staff from sharing TV ratings for his biggest TV shows, something he noted he has been far too focused on in the past.

The music mogul talked about how the COVID-19 pandemic left him feeling anxious all the time.

“In the very, very, very early stages, some friends of mine got really ill [with COVID] and I’m talking about really ill,” he recalled.

”So, I thought, ‘God, if I catch this, maybe the same thing’s going to happen to me, Eric and Lauren,’ ” he said, referring to his 9-year-old son Eric and fiancée Lauren Silverman.

The constant stream of news only made things worse, with Cowell adding, “I didn’t know what was true or not, I just didn’t have a clue other than I was petrified about catching it. Just petrified.”

Despite subsequently contracting COVID during this “nightmare” time, Cowell’s case ended up being rather moderate. But as the world started to open up, he started looking for ways to enhance his mental well-being.

“It gave me a time to reflect on things in a way I never would have done before,” Cowell told The Mirror. “And as things started to calm down a bit, and it was almost like now I’ve got to go from there, back into the real world. How do I feel about that? And that’s when this whole notion of — I started to hear a lot more people talking about mental health.”

Cowell, who calls himself “curious by nature,” said he started reading up on the subject of mental health after receiving recommendations from friends who claimed they benefited from counselling.

“And that’s when I thought, you know what, I’ve kind of looked after my body, you know, through diet, exercise, whatever, pretty well over the years, but what have I done about my brain and my mind and all that kind of thing? And the answer is nothing. And now’s the time to do it. So it was almost like my head going to the gym,” he explained.


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