British singer Sam Smith has opened up about the anxiety he still feels before going on stage and how it influenced his recent decision to quit alcohol.
The singer told The Sun newspaper, “I get massive anxiety. I really struggle. I was so nervous at the Grammys this year.
“I thought I would be more in control of my body and emotions but I get so nervous, to the point I’m almost having panic attacks.
“Sometimes I need people who I love around me to tell me, ‘Pull yourself together, you’re being a drama queen — it’s too much now, Sam, so rein it in’.”
He said his anxiety levels and mental health “went through a shaky period” over Christmas, ahead of the start of his second world tour.
“But I’ve started meditating now, I am not drinking, I am trying to look after my mental health,” he said.
“Mental health issues are coming to the fore because people are starting to talk about it. So many people go through stuff. For me, my music has been my therapy.”
Sam told the publication of his decision to quit alcohol, “It’s about the self-destructive element — I was going out drinking way too much.
“Of course, you want to celebrate that these amazing things have happened but you can’t celebrate all the time.
“I’ve been completely off the booze for three weeks now. I never want to make promises but being sober is something I’m interested in.
“When I don’t drink and I’m not smoking cigarettes, when I’m completely clean, I feel so focused and happy.
“I don’t see myself drinking for the rest of the year because of the tour. I am more fun when off the booze — it’s nice. I am enjoying it now and we will see how it goes.”
Sam has dated actor Brandon Flynn since last year and the singer revealed he’d love to become a father one day.
“I want a baby one day, it’s always been a dream, but next stop is getting a dog – a rescue dog,” he said.
The singer will tour Australia later this year, performing four arena shows in capital cities including Brisbane.