INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA: In this image released on May 2, Selena Gomez attends the Global Citizen VAX LIVE: The Concert To Reunite The World at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California. Global Citizen VAX LIVE: The Concert To Reunite The World will be broadcast on May 8, 2021. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Global Citizen VAX LIVE)

Selena Gomez has opened up about how her relationship with social media has impacted her mental health. In a new interview, the star revealed that putting some distance between herself and her social media apps has helped to improve her mindset over the last few years.

Gomez – who was once the most followed person on Instagram – revealed that after struggling to cope with the barrage of negative comments she received each day, she made the decision in 2017 to hand over her accounts to her assistant.

“I don’t have it [social media] on my phone, so there’s no temptation. I suddenly had to learn how to be with myself,” she explained. “That was annoying, because in the past, I could spend hours looking at other people’s lives. I would find myself down nearly two years in someone’s feed, and then I’d realize, ‘I don’t even know this person!'”

Gomez’s assistant then acts as a liaison for the Same Old Love singer’s social media communications, posting her photos and videos so that the star no longer deals with the platforms directly.

“Now I get information the proper way,” said Gomez. “When my friends have something to talk about, they call me and say, ‘Oh, I did this.’ They don’t say, ‘Wait, did you see my post?'”

Gomez’s stance is part of a wider conversation that has been happening about the emotional implications that social media can have on young people. During the tumultuous global events of the last 18 months, an increasing number of social media users are taking extended breaks from the platforms, or deleting their accounts altogether.

Gomez credits her time off Instagram with allowing her to feel more present. “This tiny little phone that had 150 million people on it—I just put it down,” she said. “That was such a relief for me.”