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“In the beginning, I couldn’t deal with it that well. I kind of went into a bit of a depression,” she told former Surgeon General under the Obama administration Vivek Murthy during a conversation on her Rare Beauty Instagram page. “And then I started going into a place where I was really writing and being active. And then, I guess it just forced me to have that time.”
The 28-year-old singer and actress went on to explain how mandated social distancing protocols and quarantines made life quite different from her usual fast-paced lifestyle. “My job is a lot of travel, connecting with people, making people happy and that makes me happy,” she explained. “So it has been a struggle. I think I posted on my Instagram where I was crying explaining to all of the people who were following me how much I missed them.”
While being forced to slow down, however, Gomez took the time to surround herself with friends and family in a way that she couldn’t before. She also focused her energy on bringing certain projects to life, like Rare Beauty that has an emphasis on mental health.
“That was something extremely exciting for me. You know, I’d worked on personal things like a beauty line that our goal is to reach 100 million in 10 years for mental health,” she shared. “And recently, I’ve been able to go into the studio. So I would say right now, I’m fully coming out again and I just think I had to handle it the way I needed to handle it and I got through that with the right people and doing the right things and doing the right steps to not make me go crazy.”
Although the past few months were trying, Gomez shared that her mental health has been a work-in-progress for a couple of years now. One of the ways that she’s bettered herself is by staying off of social media.
“I have not personally in two years had any social media on my phone. Though I use the platform, I make sure I approve and write things that I want to write, but I don’t look at it and it’s not on my phone,” she said. “So I believe heavily that there is something about social media and its technology being blamed for increases in loneliness and disconnection.”
She even explained how social media had been detrimental to her in the past. “I just felt like every day and I woke up and was like why am I doing this? If I’m constantly doing things wrong or if they think I’m this sell out, fake, not real, not authentic, which is every part of my being, these words hurt,” she said. “They add nothing to my life. And the truth is, they’re lies.”
To combat that negativity during this difficult time, Gomez said she had dinner parties with the friends she was socially distancing with where nobody was allowed to have their phone. “Two hours went by and I could see all of us so fulfilled,” she said. “I almost felt closer to everybody.”
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