By Alexis Bennett
Updated Oct 12, 2018 @ 11:30 am
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Craig Sjodin

From playing the adorable Olivia on The Cosby Show to rocking out on The Cheetah Girls, Raven-Symoné has literally grown up before our eyes. And now, she's filling the That's So Raven-shaped hole in our hearts on the spin-off Raven's Home.

In the show, which is executive produced by Raven-Symoné, Raven Baxter's all grown up, divorced, and raising twins: a girl named Nia (played by Navia Robinson) and a boy named Booker (portrayed by Isaac Brown). Booker inherited Raven's gift of seeing into the future. Raven-Symoné can relate to both of her co-stars in real life, too, since they're growing up in the spotlight just as she did.

The show's season 2 musical will air tonight at 8 p.m. EST on the Disney Channel. But before the special airs, we caught up with the actress-turned executive producer to find out what we can expect. She also got into her true feelings about fame (and the ego that comes with it), and what happens when your personal style is not considered "brand-able."

On creating positivity in dark times...

The one thing I love about being on the Disney channel is that it is always about empowerment, no matter what our political climate looks like. It’s always about self-esteem, self-assuring, and confidence. I feel like it might be a little brighter now because of all of the dimness that’s going on, but this is something that’s constant within the channel, That’s So Raven, and Raven’s Home. The different episodes that you see dealing with gender roles and social media, it’s always going to be there. Hopefully, it will be a beacon of light for those living in dimmer times.

On mentoring her young cast mates...

One, I think it’s really important for me to be myself, so that they don’t see a two-faced person. Two, for me to express how my life has gone in a way that doesn’t project my challenges on them, so that they can go through what they need to. I’m empathetic to their challenges because I went through a lot of the same things. I’m like oh my goodness I remember when I was this age. You want to chill with the older crowd. You want to chill with the main person of the show. I tried my best to divvy my time for everyone, so that they all feel involved and always feel like their age, because when you are under the age of 18 and you have to act like someone over the age of 18, you can begin to feel resentful later. So I treat them as respectfully as I can within our age base. But they’re cool. They’re like my little nieces and nephews.

Mitch Haaseth

On fame and ego...

I’m not in the industry to be famous. That’s not my goal. My goal is to create content and entertain people. I was never that person to be like oh my god I’m famous. It was actually the exact opposite. But that’s the problem now: People feel the need to “make it” or feel famous. The fame is what pushes them. What pushes me egotistically is titles, credits, elevating myself within my company. Now, I’m executive producing, and I have to keep rising up. So "made it" — for me — is I’m directing and producing my own thing, whether or not I received 17 likes or more.

VIDEO: See Our Favorite Raven-Symoné Beauty Moments

On executive producing...

I absolutely love it. It is something that, well, I’m not going to say that. I was going to say I wish it came sooner, but everything happens for a reason. I’ve been involved in this show and learning subconsciously from my past. I love learning about what happens behind the set. Now, I say I don’t want an extra weave. I’d rather use that money to build an extra set. So now I can see the full picture.

Mitch Haaseth

On her style transformation...

When I was younger, I felt like, you need to wear this, you need to wear that. My personal style wasn’t brand-able. So the things that you saw me wear up until around 25 really weren't me. It wasn’t me at all. It was other people. I remember thinking, "I don’t want to wear this." And now, no matter what size I’m at — because I’ve been every size in the book — I’m beginning to understand how to mold myself into what people on the outside haven’t seen. My motto is comfy. I don’t want to be tight and pushed in where I can’t be myself. I want to be cute and sexy because there are different versions of sexy.

On her go-to holiday gift...

I love an Amazon gift card. And get this: there’s no need for wrapping paper. You just send it through the email and you could even text them and just say, "Happy Holidays, boo." And if I do ever give a gift in person, I don’t always use a bunch of extra paper because I’m going to want it back and use it for my art stuff. It’s just so hard nowadays, but thankfully we have everything at our fingertips. I should add in iTunes gift cards, so you can buy some apps. So yeah, just iTunes and Amazon cards.