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Lady Gaga Discusses Depression, Passion and the Power of Saying ‘No’ in a Speech About Emotional Honesty

We’ve seen Lady Gaga lay absolutely everything out for us on stage, screaming, crying, flailing around half-naked and drenched in every sort of body fluid imaginable. And yet, it seems we’re only just now seeing the most vulnerable side of Lady Gaga — or really, Stefani Germanotta.

As part of Gaga’s Emotion Revolution project, a partnership between her own Born This Way Foundation and Yale’s Center for Emotional Intelligence, the “Applause” superstar addressed the crowd at Yale University last Saturday at the Emotion Revolution Summit with some thought-provoking — and perhaps unexpectedly honest — comments about not only her own position as a pop star and its effects on her own happiness, but the digital age as a whole.

“I have had to make decisions. ‘Why am I unhappy? Okay, Stefani, Gaga, hybrid-person. Why are you unhappy? Why is it that you wanted to quit music years ago?” she self-analyzed in front of the crowd, going on to list all of the things that bothered her and killed her passion as an artist, from perfume promotions to being used for money to entire days spent taking selfies.

“It feels shallow. I have a lot more to offer than my image,” she said.

“So what did I do? I started to say ‘no’,” she explained. “I’m not taking that picture. I’m not going to that event. I’m not standing by that because that’s not what I stand for.”

“Slowly but surely, I remembered who I am,” she continued. “Then you go home and you look in the mirror and you’re like ‘Yes, I can go to bed with you every night. ‘Cause that person? I know that person. That person has balls. That person has integrity. That person just doesn’t say yes.'”

She went on to expand that point to a more universally relatable subject: Texting, and worrying over sending the right response — an all-too-real #millennialproblem. Exclamation mark? Winky face emoji? Too eager? Too suggestive? “This is the age that we live in. We’re not actually communicating with each other. We’re unconsciously communicating lies.”

It’s a speech that not only sheds new light on Lady Gaga outside of her colorful and chaotic artistry, but offers — err, when other words fail — some much-needed truth tea about the world we live in today.

On a related note, Gaga also opened up while receiving the Young Artist Award at the Americans For The Arts gala last week about the effect that making art has had in “curing” her.

The string of speeches is yet another impressive step in what has been Gaga’s continuously winning, and seemingly much more emotionally healthy, personal and professional rebound from her ARTPOP-era depression days. It’s genuinely thrilling to see her thriving once again.

Now, go ahead and get back to work on LG5, Gaga — at your own pace this time, of course.

To watch Gaga’s entire speech from the Emotion Revolution Summit, check out the video below, beginning at the 59 minute mark. (Thanks, GagaDaily!)

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