Mindfulness | 

Former 2FM star Keith Walsh reveals how therapy helped him deal with 'rejection' after leaving RTE

Speaking to Alive and Kicking with Clare McKenna, Keith spoke of how tired he was of hearing that he should “man up” or “grow a pair,” which led him to consider therapy

Radio DJ Keith Walsh

Neasa Cumiskey

Radio DJ Keith Walsh has opened up about going to therapy after leaving RTÉ 2FM and is encouraging children to practice mindfulness with him.

The presenter announced that he would be leaving the station back in September after seven years.

Speaking to Alive and Kicking with Clare McKenna on Newstalk, Keith spoke of how tired he was of hearing that he should “man up” or “grow a pair,” which led him to consider therapy.

He explained how therapy helped him to process his emotions after leaving RTÉ: “I had been going to therapy and I'd finished up with a job as the breakfast show had finished, which in radio terms was the right thing for them to do, to change, but I mostly just felt the rejection and the disappointment.

“You put so much effort, five years into building something up and then it's taken away from you.

“You've just got to try and deal with that, so therapy was the thing that I did because I needed to check in about a few things and I thought, ‘Well look, if I don't do it now, when am I going to do it?’”

The broadcaster shared that his therapist helped him to explore vulnerability and said that it “unlocked” everything for him and helped him to process his emotions.

“One of the things my therapist talked to me about early doors was vulnerability, and I didn't really know what the word vulnerability meant. I thought being vulnerable meant taking to the hurling field without a helmet.

“When I realised what he was talking about, it really struck me that it’s okay to say, ‘Look I'm really struggling here with this situation. I’m not happy with this situation.’

“It's not about pointing the finger or being angry with anybody, it's not about blame. It's just about putting your hand up and going, ‘This is not sitting well with me, I’ve got to figure this out.’

“I would say to anyone who is struggling with mindfulness or meditation, maybe look at that first,” he added.

The 43-year-old is now running online courses for children and adults, where participants can express their artistic sides while clearing their heads.

“Carding With Keith is a workshop and on the face of it, we draw cards,” Keith told listeners.

“We draw some pictures, we make some cards, we do some colouring. It's an enjoyable time and everyone's relaxed.

The Newbridge native continued, saying that the class is the perfect opportunity to teach the kids about mindfulness.

He said: “With the adults, I just talk about my experience. With the kids I'll pick a moment when we're all quiet and we're all drawing and I'll say, 'Has anyone ever spoken to you in class about mindfulness?

“All the kids will know, because they've all heard the word, and I'll say, ‘This now what you're doing here, this is mindfulness,’ and it gives them a real anchor for that word.

“I hope it gives them a real sense of what mindfulness means and what it's like to have that space.”

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