Stormzy felt a huge sense of relief during the 2020 lockdowns because he felt like he could finally take a break.
The “Shut Up” rapper felt like he could never take time off otherwise, his career would suffer, so when the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020 and forced him to cancel his tour, he felt relieved that he could rest without feeling guilty about it.
“I always had difficulty taking a break, going on holiday, taking a vacation, anything like that. I was a hungry MC, I always felt like I had s### to do,” he explained to GQ. “So when lockdown actually came, it was a big relief for me. Because usually if I take a break, I always feel like the world is still moving. But this time everyone stopped. The world stopped.”
For the first time in years, the grime star let himself chill out and played PlayStation with his brothers without feeling bad about it. To keep his mind sharp, he stayed off weed and took a break from social media.
“I just don’t think the best version of myself is scrolling on my phone,” he said of his social media detox. “It can’t be good for anyone’s mental health. I’ve got a lot of theories about how it distracts and manipulates, especially for someone like me. I have a lot of energy. I have a lot of traffic. And I felt like that for a long time. God didn’t design us to consume that much traffic, that much information. That much content. I don’t want it to seem like I’m on a high horse. I just don’t think it’s that healthy.”
Stormzy, who is now back on social media, released his third studio album, This Is What I Mean, on Friday.