Alastair Campbell on depression: 'I was so low I started punching myself in the face'

Alastair Campbell opens up about coping with depression

Alastair Campbell spoke to Paul Ross about his depression

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Alastair Campbell has opened up about how his battle with depression, saying he was once so low he punched himself in the face.

Tony Blair's former communications guru, who masterminded the rise of New Labour during the mid-1990s, is supporting a campaign launched by Prince Harry and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, to encourage the public to talk more openly about mental health.

Campbell told Paul Ross that he reached his nadir back in the mid-2000s, when he was still serving Blair in government. He said: "About 12 years ago now [my wife and I] went out for a walk and I was feeling very low and close to suicidal and I just started punching myself in the face."

It was then that Campbell and his wife decided to seek help. He explained “before [I developed techniques to cope] I used to go into lockdown mode. I’d just shut up, I would hide away from people.

“You develop techniques. One of the most important things I do now is give [depression] marks out of 10 every day. I do find that exercise helps."

But Campbell said there is a small positive side as "some of the best stuff I’ve ever done is when I’ve been depressed or a bit manic after depression."

Listen to the full interview above