CELEBRITY
03/01/2013 01:56 pm ET

Austin Butler, 'Carrie Diaries' Star: 'I Was Rebellious And A Mess Of A Person'

Austin Butler, who plays the title character's love interest on "Sex and The City" prequel "The Carrie Diaries," recently proclaimed his admiration for the original series' leading man, Mr. Big. "He’s so cool, he’s such a bad a--," Butler told The Huffington Post in February.

But rather than following in the commitment-phobic footsteps of Chris Noth's suave playboy in real life, Butler, 21, seems happily devoted to his girlfriend of more than a year, Vanessa Hudgens. In a new interview with Cosmopolitan, Butler reveals the qualities he looks for in a woman.

"Someone who is selfless in nature and cares about others—that's such a huge thing for me. How someone treats a waiter or doorman can tell you so much about a person. And I'm attracted to someone who is a hard worker and is passionate about what they do," he said.

Butler also opened up to Cosmo about why he's come to embrace a positive outlook on life, as evidenced from the inspirational aphorisms he typically tweets.

"I went through a period when I was rebellious and a mess of a person," he says. "I'd swing from happy to depressed, and I realized the patterns of my mental state were contingent on the feelings I was allowing in my head. Depression and anxiety can't fit in your head if you're cultivating feelings of joy and inspiration. So now every morning, I go for a walk and list all the things I'm grateful for. It makes me so happy."

Butler also has a supportive family to be grateful for. When comparing himself to his "Carrie Diaries" character Sebastian Kydd, he told Just Jared: "I come from a very, loving supporting family, not very wealthy at all, very different in that way. I think that’s shaped him into this guy who puts up walls and protects himself from that pain of not being loved. I don’t have that so much. I don’t have many walls that I put up. So it’s kind of learning to do that for him."

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