If this whole singing thing didn't work out for Zayn Malik, he had a plan B.
In a new interview with VMAN 38 (via E! News), the singer said he has thought about what life outside of music would have entailed. If not for One Direction, we may be referring to him as Professor Malik.
"I think about alternative realities. I think I'd be at university and I would have done my English degree. I think I'd be looking for some employment to do with English lecturing or literature," he said. "I love poetry and writing—obviously, I'm a songwriter—so, it would've been something that would still give me the feeling of a creative outlet within my writing."
Of course, Zayn had a good run with One Direction before choosing to go out on his own.
"I don't think it was necessarily that experience that made me a man. I was becoming a man at that time anyway, and that experience was a validation of my decision-making at that time," he said. "Maybe I became a bit more in the driver's seat—a bit more in control—and that was the first decision I made that reflected that in my life."
He added, "I think it was a natural growth as a human being and as a person. I'm still growing every day, as everybody is. I don't know everything and I'm willing to learn, so I believe everything is a natural progression."
And for him, Zayne says he's his own man, regardless of outside influences.
"For me personally, I don't ever try to dwell so deep on labels and boxes and places that people want to put you. I believe that we as individuals are in charge of the way people perceive us. There are negative and positive sides to every human on this planet. That's just the way it is," he said. "You just have to accept that. If I were to overthink that, it would affect me."