Zoella has long been open about her ongoing struggles with anxiety, but now the YouTube star has revealed she sees a therapist for help.
“I have a therapist who I speak to every week without fail, and that’s been the biggest help because I’m now doing things that I never thought I’d be able to do,” she told Cosmopolitan magazine.
“I’m one of those people who think everyone should have a therapist. People go to the gym, they eat healthily and visit the hairdresser’s but no one really looks after their mind.
“My dream is to be able to just hop on the train one day and come back again, and I know I’ll get to that point, but up until then I have to take lots of little baby steps. One of my big things is to visit Australia and New Zealand. That’s my main goal.”
Zoella, real name Zoe Sugg, also said she’s had to learn how to cope with fame.
“There was a point where I was nervous to go out on my own,” she said.
“It’s not like you’ve gone into a Hollywood film where your biggest dream is coming true. It’s something that happened because of a hobby, and along the way you have to get used to this new lifestyle you have.
“There have been times when someone has just gone ‘Hi’ in my face and I have sworn [in shock] and then had to apologise.”
At one point, her anxiety was so bad that she turned down an opportunity to meet Prince Harry.
“I was too scared. I’m working on this anxiety thing but I’m not quite ready for that,” she said.
“Hopefully he will invite me back. Sorry Prince Harry.”
The 26-year-old also opened up about the barrage of abuse she received in 2014, when it was revealed she had used a ghostwriter to help write her debut novel.
“It was horrible. I worked really hard on the book and it was all me – the characters, the story. I felt as if I was being attacked and I was like, ‘I’m going to shut my laptop, I can’t be bothered with all this,’” she said.
“It knocked my confidence massively. When it came round to the second book, I felt I couldn’t and that it all been ruined. It took a lot for me to put that behind me and move forward.”
Earlier this year reports suggested Zoella earns £50,000 per month through her successful YouTube channel and the star has had to toughen up to deal with jealously.
“There are a lot of people that get catty. There are always people that try and tear you down and don’t like that you’ve become successful,” she said.
“That’s just human nature, but I’ve grown a thick skin. It’s a number of things, like bitchy tweets, people writing blog posts about it, comments… I’m not a confrontational person. It really goes against my nature. I just smile and carry on.”
She added that her boyfriend, fellow YouTube star Alfie Deyes, is a huge help when she’s feeling her most anxious.
“He’s the first person to say, ‘I’m so proud of you,’” she said.
“If I’m ever like, ‘I can’t do this’, he’s like, ‘I can help you.’”
The full interview appears in the November 2016 issue of Cosmopolitan, on sale 5th October.
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