Adam Peaty insisted adding more gold medals to his already bulging collection would not be the cure-all to his struggles.
The three-time Olympic gold medallist withdrew from the British Swimming Championships last month after citing mental health issues and later admitted he had been on a “self-destructive spiral”.
Peaty has spoken previously about periods of depression and problems with alcohol, which he admits worsened last year as he struggled with injury, motivation and the breakdown of his relationship with the mother of his young son.
He remains hopeful of heading to the Paris Olympics next year as he looks for a third straight title in the men’s 100 metres breaststroke but was adamant that doing so would not be a silver bullet for him.
“A good friend of mine said a gold medal is the coldest thing you will ever wear,” Peaty told BBC Breakfast.
“It’s the coldest thing because you think it will fix all of your problems. It will not.
“I took a break because I was on this endless search of a gold medal or a world record and I looked into the future and I said ‘OK, if I do get that is my life fixed or any better?’ No.
“So take the time now to really think about who you are, what you want out of life and then get the gold medal.
“Hopefully when I get to the Olympics I will be in a very good mindset, very grateful and most importantly happy.”
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