If you’re a regular Teammate Tuesdays reader, you know that my foray into the art of being a good teammate began with the publication of my children’s book Be a Good Teammate and a desire to provide my preschool-aged daughters with a bit of lasting life advice should something unexpectedly tragic ever happen to their dear old dad.
You’re probably also aware that my daughters are now teenagers and deeply involved in dance. Occasionally, these paths intersect to reveal a valuable good teammate insight.
Several videos of my youngest daughter, Lakota, dancing have gone viral this year. A recent video of her dancing to the Zach Bryan song Dawns has accumulated 7.5 million views on Instagram and 3.4 million views on TikTok.
Another recent video is starting to gain momentum and capturing my heart as it does so. The video is of her dancing to the song Medication by North Carolina Indie/Alternative Pop rockers The Collection.
I’m an adoring father who’s enamored with her dancing in the video. But I’m equally enamored with the song, its message, and its connection to being a good teammate.
The song is about overcoming the stigma associated with taking medication for mental health disorders like depression, anxiety, and ADHD. Its lyrics were inspired by lead singer David Wimbush’s own mental health journey.
Despite experiencing severe depression since he was a teenager, Wimbush had always been hesitant to take meds for his condition.
“After struggling with depression during a particularly difficult year, a friend told me ‘Maybe your brain just doesn’t produce as much serotonin as other people. You deserve to live a life at more than 50%.’ (That advice) was the final push I needed; I got on meds and felt my mental health significantly change,” Wimbish said.
First of all, good teammate move on the part of Wimbush’s friend. Sometimes being a good teammate means helping those you care about see what they cannot.
Good teammate move on Wimbush’s part too for having the courage to share his mental health journey with the world. Sometimes being a good teammate means empowering those who are struggling with the knowledge that they are not alone.
In addition to illustrating both of those points, Medication conveys a key tenet of being a good teammate: Realizing that self-care is not selfish.
When you take a needed break, take your needed meds, or simply acknowledge the need to take your mental health in general seriously, you put yourself in a position to be the best version of yourself.
As the Medication chorus so poignantly conveys, you deserve to be well. And your team—be it a sports team, work team, family, band, etc.—deserves to have you well.
It’s hard to serve the needs of your team when you aren’t at your best.
By engaging in self-care that allows you to step beyond your comfort zone, embrace your fears, and tame your inner demons, you enable yourself to become the best version of yourself for your team.
A few days ago, my daughter showed me a split-screen video of Wimbush reacting to her dancing to his song. His reactions were raw, genuine, and moving.
His willingness to be vulnerable and share his mental health journey with others is inspiring. Don’t let his good teammate moves go unrewarded. Take a moment to give The Collection’s Medication a listen, or two, or a hundred. Share it with others.
The holiday season can be emotionally draining. Statistically, there’s a high probability that someone you know is secretly grappling with mental health issues. Sharing the song’s powerful message with them may be the good teammate move that keeps them from breaking.
As always…Good teammates care. Good teammates share. Good teammates listen. Go be a good teammate.