Australian cricketing great Mitchell Johnson has for the first time since his retirement in August 2018 opened up about his struggle with depression since retiring from a full-time career in professional sport.
Johnson, a top-performing Test cricketer ranking among the top five Australian wicket-takers across Test cricket, One Day Internationals, and T20I formats, earlier this week told a popular Channel 7 program how during a tour of South Africa in 2011, he’d suddenly got to the point of no longer finding a career in professional cricket enjoyable. He told of how he had experienced just about everything as a personal onslaught and judgement passed.
The celebrated Test cricketer said he considers his mental health struggles to have been in underlying existence even before he eventually formally retired. He said he does however believe those struggles grew much tougher to deal after his retirement. To him, said the cricketing legend, not doing “as much” as before posed particular difficulties. He also became convinced that he’d lost a certain sense of purpose when no longer actively involved in the game or in a professional career.
Now that he’s already two years retired from the game, Johnson said depression is no longer a struggle as easily suppressed as before. Having a lot of free time on his hands has emerged a major antagonist within the context of his mental health issues, explained the Aussie. Free time, said Johnson, has basically become time to mull over things, time to think the worst of every situation – and it’s a slippery slope the former player says he has little to no control over.
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