In the latest in our WISE WORDS interview series - where stars from a whole range of fields share the important life lessons they've learned along the way - we’re posing some of the big questions to Nathan Sykes, formerly of The Wanted, now setting about his solo career.
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Following his success with The Wanted, Nathan is preparing to release his debut solo album, and has been enjoying working with the legendary US songwriter Diane Warren and producer Babyface. His voice has been compared to Justin Timberlake and Usher, and recently made his US solo debut at the iconic Gramercy in New York. His first single scored a Billboard US number one on the dance charts, and now he's set to follow it up with 'Over and Over Again'.
Nathan recently sat down with HuffPostUK for a chat about the lessons he's learned so far, the biggest challenges and what's left to do...
What do you do to switch off from the world?
I like to go home to Gloucester and spend time with family and friends. I purposefully still live in Gloucester, as when I start the drive home from London I can mentally start to switch off.
How do you deal with negativity?
I try not to focus on negativity. I’ve worked very hard and feel fortunate that I get to do what I love every single day so I try not to let any negativity get in the way of that.
When and where are you happiest?
I’m at my happiest when I’m on stage because that’s where I’m most comfortable.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
My grandad once told me practise, practise, practise, and it’s something that has stuck with me throughout my life.
What has been the hardest lesson you’ve learned?
It’s not so much a lesson I’ve learned but more something I try to live by and that is don’t spend too much time worrying about the things that won’t be a problem tomorrow.
What would you tell your 13-year-old self?
Believe in yourself, the only person stopping you from doing what you want in life is you.
What 3 things are at the top of your bucket list?
I don’t really have a bucket list, however one thing that I’d really like to do is trek through the Amazon.
What do you think happens when we die?
I think about this a lot, but often come to the conclusion we shouldn’t focus on what happens when we die, we should focus on what we bring to the world whilst we’re living.
When do you feel a sense that we live in the presence of something bigger than ourselves?
Every now and then things happen that make you appreciate living in the moment. I recently had to attend a funeral and it makes you realise that you have to make the most of every day.
What do you try to bring to your relationships?
Good sex and pizza!!
What keeps you grounded?
I’d say I keep myself grounded, I’m just a 22-year-old from Gloucester who is fortunate enough to do what I love every single day and I don’t take that for granted.
What was the last good deed or act of kindness you received?
A lovely fan called Penny made me a canvas with a picture of the Sold Out sign from The Gramercy Theatre in New York where I played my debut US solo show. Not only do I have incredibly supportive fans but they’re thoughtful too! Social media makes it a lot easier to interact with people and get to know them but I try and spend as much time as possible with them in person.
Nathan Sykes' 'Over And Over Again' is out today. He will be performing on 'The X Factor' on ITV on Sunday evening. Video below...