How Exercise, Sobriety and Confronting Her Emotions Helped Heal Adele

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How Exercise, Sobriety and Confronting Her Emotions Helped Heal Adele featured image
Instagram / Adele

Adele’s new highly-anticipated album will be released on November 19. The singer’s music is always deeply personal and probing, but this album is different from its predecessors in that it’s the first one Adele is releasing from a place of personal love. During her recent interview with Oprah, the singer got candid about her mental health and her journey to self-love.

When Oprah asked if 30 was the “divorce album,” Adele responded, “I think I’m divorcing myself on it.” Oprah inquired how one does that, and Adele said it’s all about coming face to face with your emotions. “It’s lonely. I spent a lot of time on my own really sitting in my feelings and not keeping myself busy,” said Adele. She admitted that previously if she began to feel a strong emotion, she would call up a friend and make plans to distract herself, but she’s no longer doing that. During her healing process, she said, “Whenever I noticed how I was feeling, I would sit down and sit in it.”

Although Adele divorced Simon Konecki, she had nothing but kind words to say about him during the interview, even crediting him and their son Angelo for keeping her on track. “I think Simon probably saved my life, to be honest with you,” she admitted. “He came at such a moment, where the stability that him and Angelo have given me, no one else would have ever been able to give me. Especially at that time in my life, I was so young, and I just think I would have got a bit lost in all of it.” She noted that he was the most stable person she’d ever had in her life at that point. “Even now, I trust him with my life … I feel like him and Angelo, they were angels sent to me.”

During the divorce, Adele’s anxiety peaked, which led to her weight loss. “I had the most terrifying anxiety attacks after I left my marriage. They paralyzed me completely and made me so confused because I wouldn’t be able to have any control over my body,” explained Adele. During that time, she got more into working out because she trusted her trainer and didn’t experience anxiety when exercising.

“It became my time,” said Adele of going to the gym. The appointment helped inject structure into her life which helped keep her disciplined. She told Oprah that she loves lifting weights—it’s her “favorite place to be,” and she can even deadlift 160 pounds. Although weight loss was not the goal of exercising for Adele, she said shedding so many pounds contributed to getting her mind right.

Another contributing factor to Adele’s healthier mindset is dropping drinking. She said being sober is a good way to get to know yourself. At the beginning of her divorce, she admitted that she “was probably keeping the alcohol industry alive.” However, she added, “once I realized that I had a lot of work to do on myself, I stopped drinking, and I started working out lots and stuff like that to keep me centered.”

She had been unhappy for a long stretch of time before admitting it out loud, doing it only after a magazine quiz prompted her to reveal her feelings to her friends. “We were all answering these questions in this very bougie magazine. And it was something like, recalled. “I just said it in front of three of my friends. I was like, ‘I’m really not happy. I’m not living. I’m just plodding along.’” Once she confided in her friends, she began to look deeper, asking herself, “what am I doing and who am I doing it for?”

Now Adele is in a healthy relationship with Rich Paul, and she said it’s the first time she’s loved herself and been open. She told Oprah that it’ll be interesting to see how she reacts to things that hurt her in life now that she feels secure in herself. When Oprah asked what Adele wants for herself, she cited stability and peace of mind.

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