The 35-year-old star's relationship with Lewis Hamilton ended in July and - while she admitted it has been tough since their split - she has been reinvigorated by the chance to care for herself.
She told The Sun on Sunday newspaper's Fabulous magazine: "It's been a hard year, but through the heartache it's been liberating. I'm loving seeing life through these eyes.
"People lose themselves to relationships. You're living for the other person, putting so much in that you have to take a step back.
"Do things for yourself. Think for yourself. When you're whole, that's when you can be in a relationship."
Rumours had circulated that the former couple's romance came to an end because she was keen to have children whereas Lewis wasn't ready - but Nicole has insisted while she want to start a family, it would be in the distant future.
She said: "That's hogwash. I definitely want kids - but not for a few years. I'm a career girl. I can't help it.
"But my kids are going to be raised by me, the way my mom raised me.
"So I need to get my stuff out - albums, world tours, movies - and then try to do that."