Serena Williams tells Selena Gomez she sets ‘serious boundaries’ to protect her mental health

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  • Serena Williams prioritises her mental well-being and values "shut down" time.
  • In a candid chat with Selena Gomez, the tennis ace said she struggles to do "nice" things for herself.
  • The podcast was launched on Wondermind, a 'mental fitness website Williams helped fund.

Serena Williams says she has “serious boundaries” when it comes to taking care of her mental well-being.

The tennis ace opened up about her mental health in a Wondermind podcast with pop star Selena Gomez.

Williams said that for years, she had been trying to protect her mental health by allocating herself periods of time when she could switch off and recharge.

READ MORE | Spotlight on mental health in the entertainment industry

“Mental fitness for me is just really [learning] to shut down. And you know I did this years ago before even mental health was a topic.” 

The 40-year-old sports icon said that subconsciously it’s something she’s always done. “I have serious boundaries, and I don’t let anyone cross those boundaries.”

Doing things for herself

However, Williams said that she needs to work harder on making sure she does nice things for herself. 

“I really don’t do anything for me. I’m terrible at that,” she said.

READ MORE | Should it really take tragic celebrity suicides to shine the spotlight on mental health?

The podcast was launched on Wondermind, a startup Gomez co-founded. It aims to connect people with mental health tools to support their mental fitness. Funding for the startup was led by Serena Ventures, the VC (venture capital) firm started by Williams.

Earlier this month, the tennis legend said that she was “evolving away” from the sport but didn’t want to use the word “retirement”.  

"There comes a time in life when we have to decide to move in a different direction," the 23-time Grand Slam winner said in a post on Instagram. Williams said she had to focus on being a mom, her spiritual goals and discovering a “different, but just as exciting Serena.” 

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