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WATCH: JJ McCarthy Discusses Pregame Meditation, Depression, And Mental Health

Michigan quarterback JJ McCarthy recently discussed the reason for his pregame meditation, battling depression and the importance of mental health.

JJ McCarthy's pregame ritual of mediating under the goal post has become well-known among fans throughout the country. As a photographer, I've personally seen plenty of folks waiting for that moment to capture a shot of McCarthy in his element. 

In a recent interview, McCarthy discussed the reasoning behind his pregame meditation, his battle with depression, and the importance of taking care of your mental health. 

On pregame meditation:

"For me personally, I meditate before the game just to really get my mind set into that calmness, that emptiness where I can allow things to happen, and I can react from a higher perspective instead of reacting out of reacting out of just straight impulse. I want to promote the practice to the rest of the world. I want to be able to have kids that look up to me see that and be like, 'hey, let me try this out' and see it for themselves because it is a tremendous practice. When you focus on the present moment and you really dive into it and sulk into it, there's nothing that can be wrong. Meditation is just a way that helps promote that longevity of that present moment that I feel. When I feel like I'm not in the right headspace, or I'm thinking too far in the future, or I'm thinking too far in the past, I really just focus on my breath, and that starts to connect me to the present moment a heck of a lot faster." 

JJ McCarthy, Meditation

On mental health and depression:

"I know that in life, storms are inevitable. They're going to come no matter what, nobody goes through life just smooth sailing. So I do whatever I can throughout the day to prepare myself for those storms, whether that's my meditation, how I treat my diet."

"Senior year, I went through a big depression stage and, a lot of things in life, in the moment could be, you know, awful. But in the grand scheme of things, it's one of the best things that ever happened to me. I was always trying to be somebody else. I was always trying to be Michael Jordan, Tom Brady - all these great athletes that came before me. And at the end of the day, I fell into that depression because I was in a deep rest from myself...I wasn't myself.  And that's the beauty of life, we're all individually unique. We're all on the same page here. We're all one love, one humanity. I just feel like self love is all about vibrating that positive energy, vibrating that intrinsic will to just grow in every facet of your life - mentally, physically and spiritually."

"There's a lot of things we can't control. And if you really focus on the things you can't control, you're going to be in a loop of insanity and you just can't do anything about it.  So, I really just emphasize, focus on what you can control and optimize every situation that comes your way, because it's a situation that you can never get back. So enjoy every single one."

"The last thing I could say is meditate, learn how to meditate, because it will affect not just your performance on the field, but your performance through life."

You can watch the entire segment with JJ here, courtesy of