How Hannah Brown's Return to Reality TV Proved She's "Stronger Than I Think I Am"

In an exclusive interview with E! News, Bachelor Nation’s Hannah Brown looked back on her challenging yet rewarding experience on Special Forces: World’s Toughest Test.

By Mike Vulpo Jan 04, 2023 2:30 PMTags
Watch: Hannah Brown Facing Fears on Special Forces: World's Toughest Test

Hannah Brown is the first to admit her 2022 wasn't as rosy as it might have appeared on the 'gram.

"I had gotten in a mind trap or this cycle that I was weak," ABC's former Bachelorette told E! News in an exclusive interview. "I had gone through a lot of mental health things and just in my body not doing what I needed it to do for a good year and a half before the show and I had really gotten this limited belief about what my strength was."

But when producers approached the 28-year-old to appear in Special Forces: World's Toughest Test—a show that has contestants being led by an elite team of ex-Special Forces operatives—Hannah was ready for a new challenge.

"It wasn't a competition against other people," the former Dancing With the Stars winner explained. "It's a competition within yourself. I've gone through such a crazy time in my life and was really trying to heal and grow and I felt like this show would be a really good way to challenge myself in all the work that I had done."

2023 TV Premiere Dates

After arriving to set in the country of Jordan, Hannah took on demanding training and fearful challenges. And while she was able to make friends with all of her co-stars including Mel B, Tyler Florence, Jamie Lynn Spears and Kenya Moore, Hannah admitted that filming was far more dramatic than any rose ceremony or fantasy suite confession.


"The living conditions were the hardest part," she said. "All we were given was a box that had three pairs of underwear, two bras. We had two sets of clothes for the entire time, a bar soap and a toothbrush. We were on the tiniest cots all in a tent outside in the Jordanian desert going to the bathroom in buckets with a piece of plywood in between us that our heads were out the whole time."

In other words, Hannah really missed the Bachelor mansion.

"This is not a beauty pageant at all," she said. "I'm honestly terrified to see what I look like the entire time. It truly feels like you're fighting for your life at all times. You're just in discomfort the entire time."

While viewers will have to see how long Hannah lasts on the show, she is grateful for the experience and the life lessons she obtained.

"I think this show taught me that I'm so much stronger than I think I am and I have come a long way," she said. "Even when it feels like you can't take any more, there's always this extra gear that we all have." 

And as 2023 kicks off, Hannah is remembering "just how strong I actually am."

"I'm so thankful for that," she explained, "because I needed that so much at this time in my life so that I can move forward."

Special Forces: World's Toughest Test premieres Wednesday, Jan. 4 at 8 p.m. on Fox.

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