Selling Championship Ring for Mental-Health Awareness

You have to admire Ron Artest. One minute he’s getting into brawls with NBA players and fans, and the next he’s orchestrating a very inspirational movement to create awareness of mental-health issues and the importance of psychologists and therapists in schools. All this at the cost of his 2010 NBA championship ring. That’s right, Ron Artest will be selling his championship ring to help fund-raise money to place more psychologists in schools.

I was one of those people who openly made fun of him the day he thanked his psychologist on live television the moment the Lakers won the NBA title. Who does that? Ron does. He spoke wonders about the benefits of having a psychologist. I have to give him credit for his courage and vision to get involved like this when the easy thing would have been to remain the eccentric “Dennis Rodman 2.0”. He’s obviously reaped the benefits of seeing a psychologist and it is not a coincidence that his troubled ways have lessened over time. Don’t get me wrong, he’s still a ticking bomb that could blow up any minute, but he’s learned to control his temper with the help of a psychologist.

I used to believe psychologists and therapists existed only for troubled people. There is a negative connotation and even a stigma to seeing a “shrink”.  In reality, they can make the difference between someone finding a constructive solution to their problem(s) and someone making a terrible irreversible mistake. I’m continuing to reevaluate the benefits of therapists and psychologists for “normal” people like you and I. To a certain extent, we’re all crazy. Some people just choose to go against the grain and share their “abnormal” thoughts. If that’s the case, then Ron and I have more in common than I thought.

Ron Artest may be crazy. But his craziness has been more of a blessing than a curse.

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