Voice star Bressie has revealed being on the hit RTE show left him with crippling anxiety.
The 32-year-old singer said the fame that came with the success of the first series left him having palpitations.
He spoke out on RTE Radio One’s John Murray Show with hopes of encouraging others in the same situation to get help.
Bressie said: “It was relatively recently and I’m quite open about it. It’s something that for too long has been stigmatised in this country. People assume anxiety and stress are the same.
“But anxiety is all-consuming – it takes over your life and it doesn’t pick its victims. Often people will say, ‘But everything is going well,’ but that doesn’t make a difference really.”
Bressie added he first felt the symptoms when he became the hottest new property in Ireland as a coach on The Voice.
He said: “For me it was when the show started I think. I started realising I had lost a bit of my anonymity and it just came on.
“With anxiety there are massive issues with sleeping. You have palpitations in situations especially if you are doing live television.
“And I said to myself, ‘That’s the kind of person I am, I’ve got to learn to control it’.”
Bressie said it was getting back into physical exercise that helped him manage his condition as he had missed it since he gave up his rugby playing to make a go of his first band The Blizzards.
He said: “Other people don’t learn to control it and they take up the wrong way and go down the wrong route with it.
“But that was one of the main reasons I got into the triathlon training. I felt that was a really good thing because I missed that physical challenge I had when I played rugby.
“That’s a big void in my life so I started doing triathlons and it really helped. But then again once I came out and talked about it I started realising that everybody I know is going through this but they are hiding it.
“And I think it is ridiculous that you have to hide something like this.”
Bressie said that although he didn’t take medication, he had been considering it.
And even though he didn’t experience full on panic attacks he could never settle and relax.
He explained: “I went to the point where I was considering it but I figured I had to kind of manage it.
“ I didn’t get full on panic attacks – whereas I have friends who wouldn’t be able to breathe.
“I wouldn’t get that, I would just get palpitations.
“And I could never sit down and turn on the TV and watch it. I could never relax.
“People who would have known me before would realise that was not me at all.”