Liam Payne was nearly "killed" by his success.

Liam Payne

Liam Payne

The 24-year-old singer - who first found fame at 14, when he appeared on 'The X Factor' in the UK - admitted he worried about carving out a solo career when One Direction went on hiatus in 2015 because he wasn't sure he still wanted to be "famous".

Asked to recall his hardest emotional battle, Liam - who performed in One Direction alongside Niall Horan, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, and previously, Zayn Malik - confessed: "I've had a few, there have been some tough times.

"When the band started our break I struggled with the idea of becoming famous again, it scared the living daylights out of me. Because the last time it nearly killed me, frankly.

"So I had to figure out a way to make it work for me - rather than me work for it."

Liam - who has a 13-month-old son, Bear, with girlfriend Cheryl - believes a mixture of humour and brutal honesty are the most effective ways of dealing with fame.

Asked how he copes with public interest in his day-to-day life, Liam told KISS FM: "Laugh it off and remember it will become a story one day. And will seem funny."

The 'Strip That Down' hitmaker added that having good, honest people around him has helped to keep his stresses in a healthy perspective.

He shared: "I speak to a lot of people who are in the same position as me because I have grown up in the public eye. I was 14 which is so young to start in that process.

"I love my life, it's been fantastic but there have been a lot of struggles to get to this point. It's about having good people around you. They don't have to be a psychologist - just people who are friendly, someone to talk to."

Liam spoke out to back KISS FM's 'Where's Your Head At?' campaign, which is striving to break the stigma attached to talking about mental health and make it a legal requirement for every work place or college in the UK to have a mental health first aider.