"I was going through a lot emotionally and mentally that I didn't even realize I was going through," said the reality star, who appears on the current season of Bachelor in Paradise


Kelsey Weier used the time between appearances on Peter Weber's season of The Bachelor and the current season of Bachelor in Paradise to hit the reset button on her life.

During Monday's episode of the Talking It Out with Mike & Bryan podcast, Weier opened up about how her experience on Bachelor in Paradise was "completely different" from her time on The Bachelor.

"I think having a year off really helped me just kind of grow into my skin, figure out what I truly want [and] what I don't want. And I just came into Paradise with a different mindset," Weier, 30, told co-host Mike Johnson and guest co-host Joe Amabile. "I think going on The Bachelor, I was going through a lot emotionally and mentally that I didn't even realize I was going through."

She continued, "A lot of that emotion came out because of the situation I was in with, you know, the pressures of being on the show. I'm hoping you're going to get to see a different side of me on Paradise."

Kelsey Weier
Credit: ABC/Craig Sjodin

As for what she was hoping to find on the beaches of Paradise, Weier said: "This time around, I didn't go in with any expectations."

"I had hopes and all that, but I just wanted to have no expectations," she continued. "I just wanted to have fun and wanted to be myself and just enjoy my time, and possibly meet someone."

And while she felt surprisingly "calm" before entering Paradise, she recalled being the exact opposite before the The Bachelor: "I was a mess."

Weier first appeared on Weber's season of The Bachelor, which aired 2020. She was one half of "champagne gate," when fellow contestant Hannah Ann Sluss accidentally used Weier's special bottle of champagne. The situation resulted in a tense confrontation between Weier and Sluss, 25.

The experience taught Weier that she can be "very reactive," she said on Talking It Out, adding that she has since "worked on that a lot."

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

One thing that has helped center Weier has been reconnecting with her faith.

"I just think when you have peace knowing that there's a greater power out there that can help you through it, and you have a purpose, and everything that seems like a big deal now isn't going to be a big deal and it's all part of the process, it just gives you this clarity and peace," she said. "And you just don't stress as much."

For Weier, the best part of Bachelor in Paradise was the friendships she made throughout filming. "I definitely had my guard up with the girls [on The Bachelor]," she admitted. "It took me a while to trust them and want to get to know them, whereas my mindset going into Paradise was everyone's friends. There's no reason to have a guard up with people."

Bachelor in Paradise airs Mondays and Tuesdays (8 p.m. ET) on ABC.