J Balvin understands the importance of taking care of his mental health.
The 37-year-old Colombian singer candidly discussed with TODAY at the 2022 TIME 100 Gala in New York City on Wednesday how he preserves his own health and wellness now that he’s a first-time father. Balvin and girlfriend Valentina Ferrer — who accompanied him to the event — welcomed their first child together, son Rio, in June 2021.
“There’s too many ways. For me personally, I’m medicated. So I gotta take it in a humble way and just accept that I need the chemicals to balance my chemicals,” Balvin said. “But also, I meditate, I do sports. I try to be a better person every day, don’t get in trouble, even though sometimes it just comes to me.”
The “Mi Gente” singer added, “But always trying to be calm and relaxed. But it’s easy to say [that], right? But when it comes to do it, it’s a hard task.”
The artist has previously opened up about his struggles with anxiety and depression. In a November 2020 conversation with Becky G, he recalled how at one point it go so bad he was “waiting to die.”
That same year, Balvin was named one of TIME's most influential people of 2020. Camila Cabello was selected to write about his feat for the magazine.
“I remember it was 2020 when I was Time100. I didn’t even know there was an event because we were at the house with the pandemic situation,” Balvin recalled while chatting with TODAY. “So when I found out, it was crazy. We’re like, ‘Me? Really, why? What did I do?’”
“And then when I read the article that Camila Cabello did, it was just amazing,” he continued, adding how he thinks “it’s beautiful that we can inspire the world and talk about things that people haven’t talked yet, like mental health, things like that besides music.”
“I’m really happy that I’m here and just learning about all the Avengers that are here, you know, superheroes,” he added, sharing how he just watched “Spider-Man” and Andrew Garfield was in attendance.
The Latin Grammy winner has since been an advocate for mental health. Last month, he announced the creation of OYE, a bilingual, interactive mental wellness app inspired by his own journey with mental health. The Spanish and English-language app will launch in the fall.
Aside from the wellness app, he hopes to “keep making music,” which he said is “the most important” thing for him. “Keep connecting to the world and then finding the different ways to connect in a different level that is not just music and how help the world besides what we do.”
And as for the advice he would give his son about landing on the TIME 100 list, he replied, “Keep it real and go for your dreams.”