Brothers Osborne's John Osborne on battling depression and learning 'to be okay with not being okay'

'It was awful. I thought that was my life and that’s how it was going to be forever [but] I was incredibly wrong'
John Osborne
Photo credit Kevin Winter/Getty Images

John Osborne of Country duo, Brothers Osborne, is shining a light on the importance of mental health by getting vulnerable and sharing his own story.

To keep up with the artists that create music that feeds our minds and keeps the I’m Listening initiative powered, check out Audacy’s I’m Listening Mental Health Mix.

Exclusive Station
Audacy’s I'm Listening Mental Health Mix
Listen Now
Now Playing
Now Playing

In a video posted to Osborne’s Instagram page for ACM Lifting Lives new Check-In feature, John shares he struggled with concerning levels anxiety and depression in 2018.

“From my own personal experience at the end of 2019, I had a very, very, very hard time with anxiety and depression and some physical ailments as well, which literally lead to me being suicidal,” he shared.

“It was awful. I thought that was my life and that’s how it was going to be forever [but] I was incredibly wrong,” he said.

John sought help and is now using his platform to offer hope and advice to those who may be navigating a similar journey right now.

“I learned to be OK with not being OK,” he said of his most important lesson learned and something he wanted to share with others. “Being OK with not being OK is just being patient, being patient with how you feel.”

He continued, “When I struggled the most with mental health, I fought it, I resisted it and it lasted for days, weeks, sometimes even months. Now, I accept it, I let it in, I allow myself to feel it and sometimes it passes in seconds. Let yourself feel what you’re feeling and don’t fight it.”

Osborne also credits music for being another tool that has helped him cope when things feel out of control.

“Music has saved my life time and time again,” he shared. “As I kid, I didn’t have many friends because I was very shy… but when I picked up my guitar, it was like a friend that I had had my whole life… even still today, playing guitar gives me an emotional release. It allows me to express myself. Be it, musically, but it gets all of the feelings that I have inside, out.”

It’s not just his own music that can help him “release.” John also admits a good, feel-good Pop song can lift his spirits and get himself out of his head.

“I can’t dance… but if I’m alone and someone plays Dua Lipa, I might shake my butt a little bit. I’m not afraid to admit that — my dogs even think it looks ridiculous,” he laughed.

“I love just great feel-good Pop music ‘cause it gets me out of my head, right into my body.”

Audacy's I’m Listening initiative aims to encourage those who are dealing with mental health issues to understand they are not alone.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression or anxiety, know that someone is always there. Additionally, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-273-8255.

For more mental health content, special edition artist interviews, resources, and more head to Imlistening.org. 365 days a year, I’m Listening is here to provide us all with moments of kindness, community, and support.

I'm Listening
Resources | Twitter | Instagram