The 25-year-old from San Francisco - who appeared on Pavelka's season of The Bachelor - will hand out her own roses on the ABC romance reality show when it returns next week.
When asked if she now has greater understanding for what Pavelka went through on his season, she replied: "Absolutely. I just remember thinking when I was on The Bachelor, 'Why would Jake be insecure about anything? He has all these girls here vying for his attention'.
"But being The Bachelorette, I get it. People can say to me all day, 'I'm falling for you, you're beautiful'. All these words, but to me, I always found myself questioning that. Is this person being sincere? Do they really care for me?'"
She continued to say that it was "important" for her to make it clear to the bachelors that "this was serious and not just a game".
"I have so much more respect for Jake and Jillian [Harris] and Jason [Mesnick] and everyone who has been through this," she added. "It is really difficult and by far the hardest thing I've ever done."
The Bachelorette premieres May 24 at 9pm on ABC.
> Click here to read the full interview with Ali