Demi Lovato opens up on how social media can be a 'giant trigger'

Lovato said social media can be a "giant trigger" to her mental health, but she has learned to cope by creating boundaries.
/ Source: TODAY

Demi Lovato has opened up about how she puts her mental health first when she uses social media, and it all starts with creating boundaries for what she sees when she goes online.

“Social media in itself is a giant trigger," Lovato told Ashley Graham on an episode of the model's "Pretty Big Deal" podcast released Tuesday.

Lovato, who has struggled with an eating disorder, bullying and substance abuse in the past, explained how she now practices self-care when she goes online — even if it means muting some posts from her feed.

"I'll be like, 'Ugh, why don’t I look like that?'" Lovato said. "Those are my friends, and in a normal situation I would unfollow because it’s triggering for me, but these are people I love and I just happen to be friends with these people that are sex symbols and are ridiculously good-looking."

She's also not afraid to press the "block" button.

“I love blocking people. I love blocking people I know. I love blocking people I don’t know. It’s just so great!" Lovato said.

She is also using her social media presence to promote a message of body positivity. She earned praise from fans last September when she posted an unedited bikini photo of herself taken during a vacation in Bora Bora, along with a message: "This is what I got."

"This is my biggest fear. A photo of me in a bikini unedited. And guess what, it’s CELLULIT!!!! I’m just literally sooooo tired of being ashamed of my body, editing it (yes the other bikini pics were edited — and I hate that I did that but it’s the truth) so that others think I’m THEIR idea of what beautiful is, but it’s just not me," she wrote on Instagram at the time.

Lovato said she decided to share the photo while she was in the studio working on a body-positivity anthem.

"I don’t have to be in a one-piece leotard onstage," she told Graham, "because I am tired of running myself into the ground with workouts and extreme dieting that I thought the past two years was recovery from an eating disorder when it actually was just completely falling into it."

Graham wrote on Instagram she is "in awe" of her friend's "strength and openness" in the 45-minute interview.

"Her faith, wisdom, and new found awareness has gotten her to a place where she’s comfortable enough to set boundaries or take a pause to heal; which is something we can all learn from," Graham wrote. "I’m so excited for this next chapter of her career, it’s going to be the best yet because she finally gets to be true to herself."