Elizabeth McGovern said she would love to have the "grace and dignity" of her Downton Abbey character but she has too much "anger".
The star, whose grandfather was a Buddhist, said a quiet life was not for her.
She told Reader's Digest: "When I do get time off, I'm way too busy going to the supermarket and cooking the family dinner to go and live in a monastery. And I'm probably too angry to meditate."
The American actress, who plays Lady Cora, the Countess of Grantham, in the hit ITV costume drama said she enjoyed the success of the show but it did not stop her "getting cross at some of the things I see".
She said: "I'm not trying to paint a picture of some terrible personality disorder, but you ask anyone who really knows me and they'll tell you they see a lot of anger.
"Look at the way we treat the world and let each other down. The unfairness of life. I'm not necessarily talking about my life, because I get compensated very well for my job, but that doesn't stop me getting cross at some of the things I see.
"I'm not proud of it, because anger is not useful. I'd love to be able to handle life with Cora's grace and dignity. But hey, that's just how it is. I try my best in life and I'll keep trying."
Meanwhile, the actress - who also fronts band Sadie And The Hotheads - revealed she doesn't get spotted by Downton fans that much, because she looks so different to old-fashioned Lady Cora.
She said: "I don't think I'm a person that's recognised overwhelmingly because I have such a different look to that character, so my life hasn't been that dramatically effected."
Elizabeth revealed Lady Cora has decided to embrace the fun lifestyle of the Roaring 20s as she tries to cope with her grief for daughter Sybil and son-in-law Matthew.
She said: "She just wants to have a good time. None of us live forever and she just wants to enjoy it."