Shanti Das shares how recognizing the importance of mental health can help save lives

Shanti Das shares how recognizing the importance of mental health can help save lives

By Amir Shaw

Shanti Das has used her platform to highlight the importance of mental health. Das, a veteran music executive, decided to pivot careers to help save lives with her nonprofit, Silence The Shame.

With Silence the Shame, Das has found ways to incorporate music, sports, and entertainment to educate thousands on mental health. She expanded her outreach during the pandemic at a time when the shift created a change in lifestyle for people around the world.

“We’ve seen during the pandemic that people are recognizing their feelings more,” Das told the Atlanta Daily World. “People were experiencing anxiety, feelings of depression, and isolation. They were losing hope from not working. It’s important to be educated in case you need help or support.”

To tip-off collaboration with the Atlanta Hawks, Das moderated the Teen Mental Wellness Courtside Chat with Hawks guard Trae Young and five-time GRAMMY® Award-nominated singer-songwriter Chlöe.

Silence the Shame also teamed up with Clayton County Public Schools, Skyland Trail and other community organizations to help normalize mental wellness conversations and erase the stigma around mental health challenges.

On March 20, Das and the Atlanta Hawks held the annual “Silence the Shame” night during the team’s home game versus New Orleans Pelicans. Prior to the game, a panel discussion emphasized the importance of prioritizing mental health and featured speakers such as Andrea Carter (Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility for the Atlanta Hawks and State Farm Arena), Dr. Vaughn Gay (executive director for Holistic Atlanta), Garrison Hearst (12-Year NFL Veteran) and Jumaine L. Jones (Eight-Year NBA veteran and founder of Beyond The Hardwood Academy).

In recent years, more pro athletes have stepped up to reveal their struggles with mental health. Das believes that athletes are finding ways to use their platform to increase awareness.

“Athletes are being more open about mental health,” Das said. “Athletes such as Naomi Osaka, Simone Biles, DeMar DeRozan, and Kevin Love opened up about their mental health. Athletes are under pressure. They’re expected to be mentally tough. You have to recognize how you’re feeling at that moment. More athletes are understanding why it’s important to have a mental health expert on their team.”

Das shared why every person should take moments to take care of their mental health on a daily basis.

“Give yourself space and grace to navigate through those feelings,” Das said. “I think people have to take it one day at a time and implement self-care into their daily routine. It could be walking outside, exercising, or just taking a break. Whatever you can do to get yourself going. You must also incorporate a healthy diet and be more mindful of your mental health.”


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