After a 12-year-long relationship, the single life was just what Shakira needed! The “Hips Don’t Lie” hitmaker revealed to Zane Lowe in her recent Apple Music 1 interview that she feels better about her music career after her split from ex Gerard Piqué in 2022.

“In a way, it’s kind of good not to have a husband. I don’t know why, it was dragging me down,” Shakira, 47, told the radio show host on Wednesday, March 20. While she and Gerard, 37, were never legally married, they were together for more than a decade and welcomed two sons, Milan and Sasha.

The Colombian singer explained that she had a “love-hate relationship” with working while she was with the former pro footballer.

“Because every time I had to be pulled into the studio to do my work, I failed,” she said. “I felt that I was leaving my family unattended. There were times when I really didn’t enjoy it. You know, I felt guilt. I felt torn.”

Though she’s now a single mom and knows it’s more “challenging” to balance work and family, Shakira said she “feels like working.”

“I feel like writing songs. I feel like making music. It’s a compulsive need of mine that I didn’t feel before,” she added.

Shakira and Gerard announced their split in a joint statement on June 4, 2022. “We regret to confirm that we are separating,” the statement read. “For the well-being of our children, who are our highest priority, we request respect for (our) privacy. Thank you for your understanding.”

In September 2022, the “Waka Waka” singer got candid about how she was dealing with the breakup, telling Elle that she was in “the darkest hours of my life” and that music was helping her through it.

Shakira and Gerard met in 2010 when he participated in a music video that she filmed for the World Cup. They made their relationship social media official in March 2011 and made their red carpet debut in January 2012. The former lovebirds welcomed Milan in January 2013, followed by Sasha in January 2015.

In January 2020, Shakira revealed why she was hesitant to marry Gerard, admitting that it came down to fear.

“To tell you the truth, marriage scares the s–t out of me. I don’t want him to see me as the wife. I’d rather him see me as his girlfriend,” she explained. “His lover, his girlfriend. It’s like a little forbidden fruit, you know? I wanna keep him on his toes. I want him to think that anything’s possible depending on behavior.”