LeAnn Rimes is reflecting on a darker time during the pandemic.
Speaking on The Verywell Mind Podcast with Editor-in-Chief Amy Morin, LCSW, Rimes, 38, opens up about how her mental health was affected during the pandemic and what it was like to return to the stage after a year-and-a-half.
"I don't think I've ever been off the road for 16 months like this at one point for a solid period of time. I went back out to do my first show recently in front of thousands of people. I was so triggered," Rimes — who hosts her own Wholly Human podcast — says on Verywell Mind, available Aug. 9. (PEOPLE has an exclusive sneak peek.) "I'm like, oh my God, the experience that I'm having right now is so intense. And it was also like, nothing happened. I walked out, it's like riding a bike, it didn't feel like there were 16 months in between."
"I recognized when I went out, how unhealthy some of this [was]. I'm like, this is not the normal experience that I'm supposed to be having," she added. "And I've been having this heightened, energetic experience for my whole life."
Rimes explained that it was "quite shocking" to return to the stage and began to recognize the things she needs to do to support herself.
"It's been really good for me, this time to understand like, oh, there is a different way of experiencing the world," she said.
"I have my whole life, on the road, I've never had this much time at home. Like my nervous system was just like, 'What are we doing?' Even though I meditate and do all the things like I'm still, there was still this kind of energy that's always on," she added, referring to time at home. "That really kind of is my baseline. So, when that got taken away, the false security of having a job my whole life, like having all the things removed and I was terrified as everyone else, including feeling like you're going to walk out your door and die."
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Rimes said entering lockdown became a "very scary experience" for her, though she was able to "recalibrate in a lot of ways."
"[I had] some pretty heavy depression, but I've now come out of it. And the upside of that, which has been good. [It helps to get] a different perspective, because sometimes we can be in our own world and not be able to step out of it," she said. "So, I've always found that therapy definitely helps with that."
"It's not about an end game," she added. "It's like, this is the human journey."
Rimes has been open about her depression and anxiety in the past. Last year, she opened up to PEOPLE about how she finally found peace.
"At first I didn't want to face my pain, because I thought I would get lost in it," Rimes told PEOPLE as part of PEOPLE's Let's Talk About It mental health initiative. "But I didn't. People are so ashamed to talk about it and ask for help. But taking away the shame is so important."
"There was so much emptiness and sadness amidst joy," she added. "And I had to be LeAnn Rimes, the entity, not LeAnn Rimes, the person. I was very fragmented."