Valtteri Bottas admits he would have to change his mindset if he does not retain his seat at Mercedes in 2022.
It is still unclear whether it will be Bottas or George Russell driving alongside Lewis Hamilton at the Silver Arrows next year. Whilst Bottas is fully focused on keeping his spot, the Finn is also aware of how he would adapt if he is forced to take on a new project instead.
"It's all really hypothetical thinking, but I'm being really honest and yes for sure it would be a different kind of mindset," Bottas told RacingNews365.com and other select media.
"It would be completely a new kind of chapter in the career, and I think your mental approach is going to be different. Most likely wouldn't be fighting for the wins and the title, at least in the beginning, so it would be a new project.
"On the other hand, that could be also very interesting, but as I said before, my intention is keeping my seat because I think we make a really strong team now at Mercedes as we are, so let's see."
Bottas is keen to stay in Formula 1 and has suggested that he wouldn't feel ready to switch to another category such as rallying.
"I know what I want. I want to stay with the team," the Finn said. "I think that's the best chance for me to win races next year and fight for the title.
"For some reason if not, I would look at other options in Formula 1 of course, because I love Formula 1. I enjoy it, I still think I have quite a good few years ahead of me. And then [after that], never say never.
"Rally, I really enjoy it, it's really good fun. Every time I've been in a rally car I've been always smiling, so it's good fun. But to actually make a job out of it, it could be quite tricky.
"The guys are pretty competitive, they've done it all their life. Never say never to anything, but at the moment, full focus in Formula 1."
There has been speculation of Bottas returning to Williams if he were to lose his Mercedes seat, but rumours have also emerged recently of him being of interest to Alfa Romeo.