Jimmie Allen is getting real about his mental health. In a recent interview with Brooke Ashley Taylor for Chicago’s Big 95.5 radio station, the rising star shared that he's living with bipolar disorder, and explained why his diagnosis motivates him to spread positivity on social media.

Although Allen hasn't spoken about it much publicly, he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when he was 13 years old. "What kept me going was knowing so many musicians, like Charley Pride and others, have bipolar disorder and how they’ve been able to function," Allen shares.

It's why Allen's Twitter followers will often see positive, motivational-style tweets on his timeline. They're for himself as much as for anyone else who needs to read them.

"On days when you’re motivated and days when you’re depressed, you still find a way to get up," he continues. "I felt like someone needed to hear that from me. A lot of times when I post these motivational quotes, it’s really for myself. It's more my self-help Twitter, because I read my own tweets.

"I feel like it’s our job to use our struggles as motivation and a stepping stool for someone else to overcome theirs," Allen adds.

Although he's riding a wave of success right now, Allen's experienced his own share of career valleys, so to speak. He was homeless and living in his car for a time when he first moved to Nashville, and learned from rejection when he was cut from American Idol's 10th season before the live voting rounds began.

“I look back at so many ‘no's I was told, and I’m thankful for them. They give me time to regroup and become a better musician, a better writer, a better performer,” Allen says. “When my ‘yes’ finally came, I was ready for it. Every ‘no’ is a reset button that helps you get better.”

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