Gymnast Simone Biles, 26, bravely stepped back from competition to focus on her mental health and find happiness in life.
She has since gotten married to the love of her life and has made mental health part of her talking points on social media.
“Her stand has led to a major shift in how Black people and communities of color think about their mental health. She modeled the importance of caring for our whole bodies – our bodies and our minds,” psychologist Dr. Charmain Jackman added.
Positive psychology focuses on encouraging feelings of positivity among patients and finding what brings a sense of vitality to their lives.
Positive feelings can go a long way when people are facing a health challenge — like a cancer diagnosis.
Simone Biles became a household name as an A-list gymnast, dominating world championships and Olympic games over the years. However, during the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, she shocked fans when she took a big step back from competition to focus on her mental health. How has she been doing since then?
“To do something that I’ve done forever and just not be able to do it because of everything I’ve gone through is really crazy because I love this sport so much,” Biles said after making her decision about competing.
Notably, Biles faced a very public ordeal when USA Gymnastics physician Larry Nassar was accused and then convicted of sexually abusing young girls and women under his care. Biles had said in 2018 that she was one of the people he sexually assaulted.
“I don’t want another young gymnast, or Olympic athlete, or any individual to experience the horror that I and hundreds of others have endured before, during, and continuing to this day in the wake of the Larry Nassar abuse,” Biles said during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, NBC News reported.
This and other personal struggles led to the Olympic champion to step away from competing and focus on improving her mental health. Since she prioritized her well-being, she’s found happiness and love.
In May, Biles married NFL star Jonathan Owens – first in a small private ceremony and then with a larger celebration in Cabo, Mexico on the beach. The happy couple were surrounded by close family and friends.
“A look into our most special day. I love being able to relive this day over and over,” Biles wrote in an Instagram post.