CBSN

George Michael cancels shows, seeks treatment for anxiety

British singer George Michael performs at a concert to raise money for AIDS charity Sidaction, during the Symphonica tour at Palais Garnier Opera house in Paris, France, Sunday, Sept. 9, 2012. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)
Francois Mori

(CBS News) George Michael said it "breaks his heart," but he's decided to cancel a string of upcoming Australian shows so he can seek treatment for anxiety.

The British singer recently returned to the road for the first time since last year's health scare and still has a few U.K. gigs this month. He's postponing shows in Australia this November and December so he can get "long overdue treatment."

"By way of explanation all I can say at this time is that since last year's illness I have tried in vain to work my way through the trauma that the doctors who saved my life warned me I would experience," Michael, 49, wrote in an online post. "They recommended complete rest and the type of post traumatic counselling which is available in cases like mine but I'm afraid I believed (wrongly) that making music and getting out there to perform for the audiences that bring me such joy would be therapy enough in itself."

Michael revealed that he didn't know how difficult things would be, adding, "I was right to believe that the shows would bring me great happiness and that my voice would recover completely (I truly think that some of my recent performances have been my best ever) I was wrong to think I could work my way through the major anxiety that has plagued me since I left Austria last December."

Michael spent three weeks in a Vienna hospital last year for pneumonia and has credited the doctors and medical staff with saving his life.

In August, the former Wham! member played the Olympics closing ceremony in London.