Sunday 22 April 2018

George Hook: 'When I was at my lowest, my best friend told me 'you have value'. That changed my life'

"Do I look after my mental health? Very much so. I feel we have two ages – a physical age and a mental age. Some people aged 40 are mentally aged 60, because they are moaning about things.

"My mental age is about 35, when I open the Pamela Anderson webpage first thing in the morning with a coffee.

"I think stress is good for you. In the last 30 years, I've dealt with becoming near bankrupt and fellas with baseball bats coming to my house for money . . . now that's stress. At the moment, life is just a doddle.

"The only answer to stress is to stop what's stressing you. Half the people will say they are stressing about negative equity, but how many have actually gone to the bank about it?

"I used to get letters from the bank and put them in the bin.

"What did I do the day after I tried to end my life at Dún Laoghaire pier? I went to talk to someone.

"These days, someone will send a text to someone else and it's not the same. I talk to the same guy I did when I tried to take my life, my best friend, as that's what friends are for.

"When I was my lowest ebb, my best friend took me for a pint of stout and he simply said, 'you have value'.

"That prompted me to go into broadcasting and change my life.

"For problems, our parents understood that there is not a magic answer, but this generation and my children's generation think there's a (quick) answer.

"When it comes to triggers for stress or depression, I can recognise them now and feel them coming on, like the flu.

"In 48 hours, I know I will be in a dark place, so what will I do now about it?"

Irish Independent

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