Ted Danson Opens Up About Saying Goodbye to ‘The Good Place’

The Good Place - Season 4
Colleen Hayes/NBC

The Good Place may be coming to an end, but the warm and fuzzy feelings that come with it never have to end.

Star Ted Danson, who partnered with Cigna, met with reporters in recognition of World Mental Health Day on October 10 to share how meditation has influenced his life. The actor, who plays demon Michael in the NBC comedy, took part in a guided session and answered questions regarding the show as well as his practice of TM (Transcendental Meditation).

After partaking in a 30-minute meditation session, Danson spoke candidly about his experience with the mental health practice. “At Carnegie Mellon [University], where I went to acting school, we’d start every morning off with yoga exercises, vocal exercises and then a period of meditation.”

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“When Mary [Steenburgen] introduced TM to me in ’95 or ’96… it was very familiar,” added Danson, who often referred to his wife, actress Steenburgen, during the event.

“My thing that gets me out of my panic or fear or anxiety is, ‘and then you die.’ Somehow that lightens me up,” said Danson. “I’ll say to myself, ‘Hey, either shut up or die. I don’t care, either one.'”

(Credit: Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for Cigna)

Fans of the show may know that The Good Place isn’t afraid to tackle the topic of mental health through its characters, including Danson’s Michael, but mostly via William Jackson Harper’s Chidi, with whom anxiety is a package deal.

“Your body and gravity necessitate you having a little bit more of a sense of humor,” Danson revealed about getting older and dealing with stress. “[It’s] taking yourself a little less seriously out of necessity.”

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As for the impending end of the series, Danson shared it was a rather rewarding experience. “We were blessed, because usually when you stop a show it’s because you’ve been told an hour ago that you’ve been canceled and you were expecting to come back or you were about to come back or something and it’s a very abrupt divorce.”

(Credit: Colleen Hayes/NBC)

“Because the creator of our show’s a really thoughtful, decent, amazing man… he realized by the end of this year he would have told [the] story [he was trying to tell,]” Danson said. “So we had the whole year knowing that we were not coming back, so it allowed us to be in the moment, cherishing each other knowing this would not always be here. It was really lovely, so the last day was emotional but it wasn’t an outpouring — it had been coming all year.”

Hopefully, fans will have the same emotional response, but in case they’re in need of some solutions to the upcoming goodbye, perhaps looking into meditation is the key?

The Good Place, Thursdays, 9/8c, NBC