Pete Wicks has spoken out about others' opinions of him, saying that he only cares about the opinions of the people he loves, and who really know him, including his mum and his nan.
The TOWIE star spoke to Kate Thornton on White Wine Question Time about how important his mum and his nan have been to him and how he takes on board the feedback of those around him if they tell him he hasn't come across well on screen.
He said: "What Donna in Doncaster, who's never met me, thinks of me is kind of irrelevant. But what my mum or someone that knows me or someone that I love and care about: what they think about me is important.
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"I think they're the only people's opinions that should matter to you. You meet people non-stop, and you have all these friends and whatever else, but are they really your friends? Or are they people that just benefit from being around you?
"But the people that truly know you. They're the ones whose opinions matter. And my mum watches what I do, my nan watches what I do.
"And they're my two best friends. If they say to me: 'Listen, we watched it last night, and you were a bit of a knob.' I'll take that on board and go: 'Why? Tell me.'
"And then if I can put it right then I will do because they know me. They know the real me. They don't know Pete the d***head, they know me. And I think that's important, having people to ground you. And then people that know you, understand if you are struggling or having changes.
"That's really, really important to have a really small circle of people you trust, but also having trust in yourself and faith in yourself."
He talked about having a successful career in the city before he came to work in reality TV, and how he thinks this has given him a thicker skin for dealing with the challenges of being in the public eye.
He said: "I think I started in reality TV when I was a bit older than a lot of people that come in when they're 19-20. I think life experience probably taught me a lot of things. I don't come from money. I'd earned good money before that, because I'd worked for it.
"I think for me, the reason I ended up doing reality TV was purely because I was bored. I was working non-stop doing 17-hour days in the city non-stop. And I had been for a long time.
"I just thought: 'There's more to life than this.' And as much as I don't have the credibility or dignity or stimulation I might have had previously, my quality of life is better than it was. And I think that's really important.
"I was so worried about the destination and trying to be successful as I can, earn as much money as I can, and do this and do that. But I wasn't actually enjoying the journey that I'm on and you know, life's too short.
"So now my quality of life's great. I mean, I get to do amazing things and get to meet amazing people go to amazing places that I never would have had a chance to do!"
He spoke more about what he had learned from his mum and his nan, when Thornton quizzed him on his previous relationships.
He said: "I wouldn't have said I've had a great teacher in terms of relationship love. In terms of love as a whole... My mum and – my nan is just the most amazing person you could ever meet in your life. She's had people s**t on her from young, and yet she has got time for everyone.
"She's the most caring, amazing woman, she's an angel. With a level of compassion, empathy, and just all around hope that humanity isn't completely and utterly f****d is just really lovely. She's just an amazing person!
"You can't control things that are out of your control, but you can control how you react to stuff. And I think that's really important. My mum's the same. My mum's just got unconditional love for the people around her. And I think that's a really, really beautiful, beautiful thing.
"So in terms of what love should be. That's what love should be and that's what I would love to find in a soulmate."
He explained that they both keep him grounded and talk straight to any of his girlfriends.
He said: "Both of them would always take a girlfriend's side over mine. My mum, anytime she's met a bird, one of the first things she always says is: 'What the f**k are you doing with him?' They're not intimidating at all, they'd actually prefer any bird to me!
"I'm really fortunate and really lucky to have had two people like that in my life who have shaped my opinion of love and the way not just women but people should be treated. You know, I've made an awful lot of mistakes and they've certainly given me some s**t for it! They really knock me down a peg or two - trust me!"
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