For Zayn Malik, anonymity is just a nine-letter word.

In an interview with Capital FM, the former One Direction member reflected on leaving the band last year, which included plans to take some time away from the limelight. He said he quickly learned, though, that the allure of civilian life had the shelf life of a dairy product.

"It worked out for about two weeks and I got bored of it," he said. "I don't think I could ever go back to just being completely normal. I guess that's something that I accepted. This is as normal as it gets for me, I guess. I want to make music that I believe in and that I stand for, so that's what I'm trying to do."

And though Zayn hasn't had the kindest things to say about 1D since leaving the group, he doesn't regret joining, and said he'd advise his 18-year-old self to listen to his gut.

"I don't think that I would have done anything different," he said. "I was talking about it the other day to a friend of mine from home and just saying to him, like 'I wouldn't have changed anything. Everything got me to this point: Every wrong decision I made, every right decision got me here.' I guess [to my 18-year-old self]: trust your instincts and don't take yourself too seriously."

Listen to the full interview here, and tell us what you think of "Pillowtalk" in the comments.

Look back at a collection of Zayn Malik's very best live vocals: