As the oldest sibling in the Perry family (of The Band Perry fame), Kimberly Perry understands the importance of family, especially in the music industry. In her interview with Arianna Huffington for the Thrive Global Podcast, she explains how important her brothers, Reid and Neil, are to her and how they recently helped her through one of the toughest periods of her life. “I’m so grateful to have family to do it with, because music requires a lot of emotion, and heart, and mental space, and heart space,” she says. “In the most challenging moments, it’s this perfect balance of encouraging each other, but challenging each other.”

After going through a very public divorce last year, Perry tells Huffington that she took time to heal — prioritizing her mental health. She also turned to her spirituality to help her through. “This past year was a very challenging year for me, and so one thing that I did was that I turned my meditation into prayer time. But it was a very different way than I had experienced meditation or prayer before — it was so much more real,” she says. “I did a lot of visualization.”

Still, like any divorce, this one was challenging. Perry speaks openly with Huffington about how the relationship dissolved. “I was married for five years in total, and the last year, there were a lot of personal challenges for us. Both careers were changing, and I caught a lot of the brunt of that,” she says. “The thing that I noticed the most was that I couldn’t do my music in the same way — I couldn’t write in the same way, and I didn’t want to stay at the studio.” 

It wasn’t until her marriage ended that she understood why she was feeling this way. “Words really do hurt, and for the first time in my life as a grown woman, I let that inside,” she recalls. “And once I left that environment, and recognized the crime that was happening in my own home, and got out of it — it took a solid year to a year and a half to really regain a sense of confidence, and self-love, and self-care.” 

Leaving a difficult relationship, whether it’s one in your personal life or at work, can be extremely hard. When Huffington asks about the challenges she experienced, Perry is candid. “I think the hardest thing for me is, because I’m a planner, I have my life all mapped out. It wasn’t even as much about losing a relationship — it was about losing a plan, and losing time.” Leaning on her closest friends and family, Perry was eventually able to to rebuild her confidence and rethink her need for a plan. “For a second, that took me to an extremely dark place, if I’m being totally honest,” she says. “Thankfully, I had a great circle around me helping me work through that.  I found that it was important for me to be brutally honest about what I was feeling about not having a plan. And I’m grateful that I shared that with people, because they really became a lifeline, and came around to make sure that I got healthy again.”

Perry has reflected a lot on the reasons her relationship ended, and how to grow from the experience. “I was 30 years old when I got married. And so I was very much like, ‘OK, time is ticking, we have to get married, we have to get babies,’” she tells Huffington. “But there were even some early red flags that I probably overlooked for the sake of hitting a timeline. One big lesson that I learned is, relax, let life bring you the right things. We don’t have to force.”

But now, Perry is not letting her divorce hold her back. When Huffington asks her about children, Perry is candid about her experience with freezing her eggs: “The first thing that I did was go to a fertility clinic after it was over, and did an egg freeze. It felt like I was keeping options open, and I decided that’s the most important thing for me to feel. That was so helpful.”

Huffington references Thrive’s concept of Microsteps — small, daily habits that help us change our habits. Perry has some of her own. “Sometimes, when you go through trauma and a bit of a tragic situation, you start to define the rest of your life by that. So one of my Microsteps was just to really let it sink in: This is my life, and it’s not defined by this moment.” She also learned to further embrace vulnerability. “I’ve always been somebody who felt like they really had it together. And it was hard to not have it together at all in those moments,” Perry says. “But it was so helpful to talk to the people around me. That was one Microstep I did every day. I think vulnerability was very important for me: communication with a vulnerable and open heart.”

Now, Perry is in a great place, with a new hit single “The Good Life” on the charts, and a positive outlook on her future. Huffington asked about how Perry now defines a “good life.” “In my opinion, the way that I feel about a good life, at least for me at this juncture, is defined by peace and simplicity — minimalism,” she says. “You have two choices always in front of you. You can choose destruction, or you can choose life. But it is a choice. We can’t choose what comes into our mind, but we can choose what we dwell on — what we let inside our spirit and our heart. If we’re in an environment where negativity is just being thrown at us, choose to not let that sink in.” 

Check out the rest of The Thrive Global Podcasts, sponsored by Crest 3D White and in partnership with iHeartRadio, here. To find out more, listen to the full conversation on iHeartRadio, here. You can also listen to the Thrive Global podcast internationally for free on iTunes.


  • Lindsey Benoit O'Connell

    Deputy Editor, Entertainment + Partnerships at Thrive

    Lindsey Benoit O'Connell is Thrive's Deputy Editor, Entertainment + Partnerships. Prior to working at Thrive, she was the Entertainment + Special Projects Director for Good Housekeeping, Women's Health, Cosmopolitan, Redbook and Woman's Day booking the talent for covers and inside features. O'Connell currently lives in Astoria, NY with her husband Brian and adorable son, Hunter Fitz.