Selena Gomez took on the role of the keynote speaker via Zoom at Teen Vogue: Summit 2020, and her opening speech began with words of encouragement about believing in yourself, following your dreams, and how she strives for authenticity in everything she does.
The former Disney star and entrepreneur has been no stranger to applying authentic flavor to her work, “When I was younger I was lucky enough to find my passion, and from that point on, I kind of had to go with it no matter what happened,” she says “And because of that, a lot of people told me ‘no,’ a lot of people said … that I wasn’t capable.”
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She explains to Teen Vogue editor in chief Lindsay Peoples Wagner that “the theme of everything I do is good quality. I want to make sure the stuff that I have, whether it’s all the business stuff to my work, acting and singing, it’s important for me to be authentic and to connect to something. Otherwise, it seems a bit pointless to me. It requires a lot of hard work. But the payoff is amazing.”
During her speech, Gomez reflects on the theme of her latest album and explained how it tied into her mission; “The whole theme of my last album was a lot of self-discovery, a lot of being OK, being alone and being vulnerable, being OK with not looking like everything else, like everyone else.”
Songs from her album like “Lose You to Love Me” and “Look At Her Now” have helped Selena come to terms with her mental health, the excessive focus on her relationships, and being in the spotlight 24/7.
“My journey personally has been all about my timing; when I felt like it was working, that’s when I suddenly became so obsessed with making sure that everybody I knew understood that sharing your emotions was great,” she continues. “How I’m a huge advocate for therapy. How I feel like there are support groups for everybody, and it’s OK … there’s no way that people aren’t feeling a certain way, whether they’re figuring that out on their own or not, we all need each other.”
Gomez explains that her journey led her to launch her beauty line Rare Beauty in September of 2020 while launching the Rare Impact Fund on her 28th birthday as well. The funding plans to raise $100 million to provide mental health services to underserved communities.