Selena Gomez Says She Struggled with COVID Pandemic at First: I 'Went Into a Bit of a Depression'

Selena Gomez is opening up about her mental health and social media use amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Through a virtual chat with Dr. Vivek Murthy in conjunction with World Mental Health Day on Saturday, the 28-year-old singer spoke openly about chronic loneliness and the "healing power of human connection" as she shared that this year has been challenging for her.

"In the beginning, I couldn't deal with it that well," the "Rare" singer told Murthy, who was the U.S. surgeon general during the Obama Administration. "I kind of went into a bit of a depression."

Revealing how she found effective and healthy ways of coping, Gomez said that her recently released beauty line, Rare Beauty, and her time in the studio have helped her maintain a positive attitude throughout the global health crisis.

"Slowly, towards the end, I found thing things I'm doing are coming out, and that was extremely exciting for me," she said. "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 got through it with the right people and doing the right things and doing the right steps to not make me go crazy."

During their time together, the pair also discussed social media, with Murthy explaining that technology can be both a good thing and a bad thing in times of loneliness.

"I think that in theory, technology can be used in ways that strengthen our connection and that weaken our connection," he said.

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Gomez, who has been open about her social media usage in the past, told Murthy that she questioned her use of social platforms quite frequently.

"I just felt like every day I woke up and I was like, 'Why am I doing this?' " the singer-songwriter said. "I’m constantly doing things wrong, or they think I’m fake, a sellout, not real, or authentic — which is every part of my being. These words hurt and they add nothing to my life. And the truth is, they’re lies. And that is how I handled it, by saying you know what? I’m going to step out of this. Because I don’t think it’s helping me at all."

Earlier this year, Gomez spoke to PEOPLE and acknowledged it's been difficult at times to share her toughest moments with the world.

"[Being open] isn't an easy thing to ask of someone. I've had to go away a few times for stuff I didn't know [I was struggling with] and was confused by," the singer told PEOPLE exclusively. "And then this stigma came: What would people think? But when I thought about it, my first answer was, 'I don't care, this is my truth.' I'm not a stigma. I'm a person that walks their life."

By being vocal about her ups and downs, Gomez hopes she's helping fans who are facing similar issues feel less alone.

"As far as my career, I'm professional and I work very hard. At the same time, I do deal with mental health [issues] and I wanted that to also be known," she said. "In the beginning it seemed hopeless. Sometimes it was a challenge for me to even get out of bed. I was like, 'Why can't I be like you guys?' Over the years I've finally found my rhythm, but it took me time."

If you or someone you know need mental health help, text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor.

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