The actor, who has featured in films like "Kaminey", "Haider", "Udta Punjab", believes in trying new things, even if one is swimming against the tide.
"Everybody always wants you to make a safe choice because the profession in itself is so unpredictable. But I've always found success in choices that weren't safe. Answers came to me. You have to try with full conviction, no matter what the end result is," Shahid told PTI.
"Swimmers who swim against the tide would be stronger than the ones who swim with it. It's just about getting an equal shot sometimes and then you'll know who's the strongest swimmer," he added.
The actor was speaking at the launch of Marks & Spencer's new spring summer collection on Thursday night. Shahid walked the ramp for the brand, which has come out with a "Rethink" philosophy for style.
"I don't know how much I was thinking in the first few years of my career to say I had to 'rethink' at some point. But I discovered myself overtime. I backed myself to do content that personally excited me.
"The struggle always is to understand what people want to see and at the same time trying to cater to yourself as an artiste."
Shahid said the key to sustain in the industry as an actor is to only do work which one feels strongly about.
"The trick is to always delve within and find out what drives you. I don't think you can do great work for a long time if you're not driven. The work that you do has to enrich you. You don't grow otherwise.
"I do feel, today there's a thin line between what actors want to do and what people want to see, and that's overlapping. Which is very healthy," he added.
Shahid will next be seen in "Kabir Singh", remake of the Telugu blockbuster "Arjun Reddy".
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)