Demi Lovato: ‘Mental Illness Doesn’t Define Me’
Demi Lovato will never let her bipolar diagnosis define her as a person.
The “Cool for the Summer” singer was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, a condition in which the sufferer’s mood shifts between depression and elevated states, when she was 18 years old. She has also overcome an eating disorder and addiction in the past. To help raise awareness for the latest Be Vocal: Speak Up for Mental Health campaign, the Be Vocal Collection, Lovato has opened up about how she lives with the mental health condition.
“By keeping me accountable for my mental health, making sure that I’m taking care of myself, making sure I am raising my voice for other people, it has had a positive impact on me,” the singer and face of the campaign told Extra. “It represents something that I have, it doesn’t represent who I am.”
The Be Vocal Project is a series of photographs documenting 10 people from all over the U.S. who are suffering with mental health conditions. Its aim is to put across a more authentic, realistic portray of the issues.
Lovato also addressed the misconceptions surrounding mental illness during the interviewing, such as people thinking “you’re fine one minute and then you’re not fine the next minute, and in reality, that’s not how it works”, what techniques she uses to keep herself in a positive state, and shared that for her it all comes down to taking things one day at a time.
“I do things for myself that make me feel good, so if it’s working out that makes me feel good, I make sure I get a good workout, if it’s taking care of myself where I see my therapist or see my psychiatrist, I make sure I do those things to maintain a healthy mind,” the 24-year-old explained.
Meanwhile, Lovato’s bipolar diagnosis hasn’t stopped her from being creative. The singer revealed she’s currently working on new material to follow on from 2015 record Confident.
“I’m in the studio right now,” she smiled. “I don’t know when I’ll release it – I’ll release it when it’s ready.”