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‘I’m Trying to Break Myself Out of It’: Skai Jackson Opens Up About Her Struggle with Anxiety

Actress Skai Jackson is opening up about her longtime battle with anxiety.

Following the Monday, Oct. 19, episode of “Dancing with the Stars,” the Disney Channel alum spoke candidly with People about her struggle with the persistent sense of worry and fear. She also revealed when her anxiety first surfaced and how she’s been able to deal with it throughout her career. 

Skai Jackson sitting outside of her trailer on “Dancing with the Stars” set. (Photo: @skaijackson/Instagram)

“When I was younger, I didn’t really have it. During my teen years, I just really started to get anxiety. I would get stage fright when I would do certain speaking engagements, and I always would get through them, but it was a really nerve-wracking and hard thing to do,” the 18-year-old revealed. She continued, “The last few years, I’ve dealt with it and not knowing how to get through it. It’s been really hard for me. Doing ‘Dancing with the Stars’ really challenges that,” she added. “I’m trying to break myself out of it, in a sense, and [I’m] fighting through it.”

The” Jessie” star revealed that thanks to her support system she’s found in friends, she doesn’t have to deal with her anxiety alone.

“My friends are my everything. When I feel that anxiety, I always call them or text them, and they talk me through it,” Jackson said. “If it’s really bad, I just need to shut my phone off and sometimes just take a nap and chill, because I feel like that’s the best time to really relax my brain. My friends know I deal with a lot of things, especially anxiety, and they’re always here for me, which is amazing.” 

The actress has also credited her supporters for helping her get through some of her trying times. “I feel like talking to them and reading comments or anything to interact with them is the best thing ever, and it makes me so happy,” she said.

Jackson’s stress levels seemingly had been amplified following the July 2019 death of her close friend and former cast mate Cameron Boyce. The actor died at age 20 after suffering a seizure in his sleep.

The actress also was recently accused of being a bully and a racist by a former dance classmate and TikToker in late September. The actress addressed the scandal, saying that although the two may have attended the same school, they barely spoke to each other. She concluded her statement by saying, “Stop trying to gain attention 10 years later. Get a life girl!”

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