mental health

Ryan Reynolds Shares How His Anxiety Makes Him Feel Like a ‘Different Person'

In a new interview with "CBS Sunday Morning," Ryan Reynolds spoke about his battle with anxiety and feeling like he has "two parts of my personality."


From afar, it looks like Ryan Reynolds has all the confidence in the world. But in a new interview with "CBS Sunday Morning," the 45-year-old actor shared how the self-assurance he exudes on the outside doesn't always match how he feels on the inside.

"I've had anxiety my whole life really," he said during the interview, which aired Feb. 27. "I feel like I have two parts of my personality that one takes over when that happens."

Looking back at some of his talk-show appearances, including those on "Late Night With David Letterman," Reynolds recalled how he "would always be nervous" before going onto the stage.

"I remember, I'd be standing backstage before the curtain would open," the "Deadpool" star continued, "and I would think to myself, 'I'm gonna die. I'm literally gonna die here. Or, the curtain's going to open and I'm just going to be a symphony of vomit. Just like, something horrible's gonna happen.'"

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But then, something else would occur. "But as soon as that curtain opens -- and this happens in my work a lot, too -- it's like this little guy takes over and he's like, 'I got this. You're cool,'" he said. "I feel like my heart rate drop and my breathing calm and I just kind of go out and I'm this different person. And it's like I leave that interview going, 'God, I'd love to be that guy.'"

Reynolds has spoken about his battle with anxiety before, and how it's something he's experienced since he was a child. "I have three older brothers," he told Variety in 2017. "Our father was tough. He wasn't easy on anyone. And he wasn't easy on himself. I think the anxiety might have started there, trying to find ways to control others by trying to control myself. At the time, I never recognized that. I was just a twitchy kid."

He also talked about it during a 2018 interview with The New York Times. "I have anxiety, I've always had anxiety," he told the newspaper. "Both in the lighthearted 'I'm anxious about this' kind of thing, and I've been to the depths of the darker end of the spectrum, which is not fun."

And last May, Reynolds -- who shares children James, 7, Inez, 5, and Betty, 2, with Blake Lively -- wrote an Instagram post about his "lifelong pal, anxiety" in honor of Mental Health Awareness month. "I know I'm not alone," he noted, "and more importantly, to all those like me who overschedule, overthink, overwork, over-worry and over-everything, please know you're not alone."

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