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November 13, 2015 07:25 PM

At 18 years old, Hailee Steinfeld has accomplished enough to make most people twice her age look like underachievers.

The actress nabbed an Oscar nomination for her turn in True Grit, but she’s not acting in her latest (real-life) role: Steinfeld is crossing over into pop stardom with her debut EP, Haiz.

“Through music, I’ve been able to reintroduce myself to the world as me,” says the singer, whose first single “Love Myself” is already a Top 40 hit.

While the star is excited about her latest career move (“You can only hope that your passion and your love for something comes through”), she’s still a little apprehensive.

“People are already skeptical of anyone [with] whatever crossover they’re making but I want to show people how much I love it,” she says in the new issue of PEOPLE.

But if her seamless transition from child star to adulthood is any indication, becoming a multi-hyphenate will be a breeze.

“I guess I’ve never looked at it as making a transition into adulthood. Maybe there was a way that I carried myself that people never really saw me as a child, which I guess is nice – but I never felt the need to shake people’s perceptions of me,” says Steinfeld.

As for who the star credits for keeping her head on straight? Her family (she still lives with her parents when she’s not traveling for work!) – and her A-list pals like Taylor Swift and Selena Gomez.

“It’s amazing to have friends who are so supportive,” she says. “I’ve known Selena since I was, like, 13, and she has told me since day one: ‘If you ever need anything, call me. I’ve been through this. I know exactly what you’re about to go through.'”

This week's PEOPLE cover

For more on Hailee Steinfeld, pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands now.

RELATED VIDEO: This Week’s Issue – in Song!

And as she begins to juggle two careers, filming a new movie and about to embark on the Jingle Ball tour in December, she has no hesitations.

“I’m just getting started,” says Steinfeld.

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