Getty Images

From the outside, former Pussycat Dolls singer Nicole Scherzinger exudes confidence. Known for her powerful, show-stopping voice and infectious dance moves, the X Factor judge looks like the living embodiment of "having it all."

So many are shocked that 36-year-old Scherzinger opens up in the August U.K. issue of Cosmopolitan about her private "paralyzing" struggle with bulimia in her 20s, the moment she knew she needed to get help, and how she's living a happy, healthy life today.

"I had such a great life on the outside, the Dolls were on top of the world, but I was miserable on the inside," Scherzinger says. "I didn't think anyone knew in my group or in my family because I hid it that well. I was so ashamed. I knew it wasn't normal or healthy because I was hurting myself through this cycle of disordered eating."

Calling it a "vicious cycle" that went on for eight years, Scherzinger recalls the frightening, life-changing moment she had on tour. "I had started losing my voice, I couldn't sing at shows, and then I remember my manager finding me passed out on the floor in Malta or in the south of France," she says. "I thought, ‘I'm going to lose everything I love if I don't love myself.'"

Since then, she's come a long way and is speaking out about her painful history to show others with a similar struggle that there is light on the other side.

"I can empathize so much with people who have demons and voices in their heads, who aren't nice to themselves. It robs you of living your life," she says. "But you can recover and you can get rid of it forever. I did it and that's why it's so important for me to share my hide it from the world, you isolate yourself. But you can beat it-do not give up, because you're so special and you're meant for such great things."

Today the songstress finds a positive emotional release with a new album on the way and healthy relationship with longtime boyfriendand British Formula 1 racer Lewis Hamilton. In fact, the two just shared adorable pictures of their six-year anniversary in Venice.

"Well, it's something crazy romantic," Scherzinger says. "Relationships are hard and having to hold a long-distance relationship is even harder...but I'm good and I'm happy."

Check out what Scherzinger previously told us about living a balanced life. Then let us know what you think! Share your thoughts in the comments below.