Nineteen-year-old Gianni Jennes was one of Ensu’s earliest adopters. He’s also a frequent feedback provider, as we develop a new app designed to turn your music listening into a tool for managing your mental health. Gianni is from Belgium, so we have absolutely no idea how he found us. We recently sat down with him to learn more about how he uses Ensu to persevere through suicidal thoughts and what music he uses to improve his mental health.
Danielle Frider: Why do you listen to music?
Gianni Jennes: I listen to music to fill the emptiness around me. It also makes me feel less lonely because music brings good memories sometimes. Sometimes I listen to music to support the mood I’m in and to feel like I’m not alone in difficult situations.
DF: How did you find out about Ensu?
GJ: I’ve been struggling with mental health lately and found out music was something I can use to calm down. Because of that, I started looking around on multiple platforms for something that would be easy to use and I found Ensu.
DF: When did you start learning about mental health?
GJ: I never really learned about mental health until the start of summer 2019. Why then? Well, my parents had been raised with a certain mindset, it was “You do what's told whether you like it or not and you don't show emotions.” That mindset was also something that my parents taught to me, so I always thought it was normal to keep everything to myself and let everyone think I was always fine.
I have been a victim of verbal and physical abuse. I did not have a lot of places or people to go to for help when I was much younger. This went on for years which had an effect on my mental health.
In the summer of 2019, I started attending university and got into a very good relationship with someone who I trusted and could talk with about my past. We had a special connection and I could finally open up and talk about how I felt and everything I had experienced.
In January 2020 it all changed. We broke up and things at home and in school became very difficult, which made my mental health suffer. As a result, I started spiraling, going from being okay one moment to very sad with suicidal thoughts and attempts the next.
After that, I talked with a good friend who helped me get into therapy. Now things are a bit better. I am happy I could talk with her and get into therapy because life is never over.
DF: What music genre, artists, or songs are your favorite?
GJ: The type of music I listen to is mostly nightcore. I like both happy and sad songs, but more often connect with their sad songs. It helps me get through the moment. The song I listen to the most is "The Sound of Silence” by Disturbed. I like the song because it can help me feel both happy and sad depending on my mood. It feels different each time I listen to it.
DF: What is your favorite Ensu feature?
GJ: My favorite Ensu feature is being able to track and look back on my mood for a certain period or day. I also like being able to connect my mood to the music I listen to, to move along from certain moods.
DF: What is your dream feature (or what would you like us to build next)?
GJ: The next feature I would love is for the app to integrate with other music providers like SoundCloud and YouTube.
There you have it friends. Music can be an amazing tool to help manage and understand your emotions. It can bring you to a happier state or be a source of understand during sad times. No matter what you're going through, Ensu can be there for you. If you haven't tried the app yet, why not give it a go?