Selena Gomez on Returning to Social Media and Avoiding ‘Mean’ Girls

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For the past four years, Selena Gomez purposely stepped back from social media, letting her assistant post for her. Now, she’s back on her channels and posting most of her own content, she confirmed to Time. Gomez revealed that she limits her time on Instagram and TikTok to help protect her mental health—and apparently she channels that same energy in real life.

When it comes to friends, “it’s a cliché, but girls are mean,” Gomez said. “It’s a very weird competition, being in the cool girls area—and then I’m just kind of like, there. I don’t know where I’m meant to belong.”

Gomez’s closest friends are not actors. They work either behind the camera or in different industries, like real estate. Th separation is good for her, she said: “I love having levelheaded people around that couldn’t give two fucks about what I do.”

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Gomez did an interview with two of her three closest friends, Raquelle Stevens and Ashley Cook, back in 2022. She said then, “I just needed people in my life that were going to look at me and unconditionally say, ‘Hey, you may not have made the right choice, but we love you, and we don’t think any less of you. We don’t think you’re a bad person. We just care, and this is kind of where you are.’ And that has been the biggest gift of my friendship from you [all], including Courtney [Lopez], who’s one of our best friends. I think it’s a huge part of who I am. I’m just incredibly lucky. And I know, and I want to say this too because this is important, a lot of people don’t get the chance to have friends like we do, and I am considered one of the luckiest people in the world because I have three instead of just one. And I get to live life with those people.”

Gomez also shared a little more about her return to social media during her TIME100 Summit appearance in late April.

She reflected on the takeaways of her Instagram break in particular, saying, “Well, I took four years off of Instagram, and I let my team post for me for those years. I felt like it was the most rewarding gift I gave myself. I think people, especially young kids, it’s—you’re sitting there so focused on what looks wonderful when everything that’s meant to be wonderful to you is not from here. [During my break], I was more present. I was happier. I would actually get real phone calls [from] people telling me about their story, and I could actually hear it instead of going, ‘Oh, I already know what you did today.’ It’s more human.”

Moderation remains critical to her: “it’s important to take breaks,” she said. “So I try to—I don’t really pay much attention [to social media]. I’ll just do things here and there.”

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