NEW YORK (AP) -- Yoga is serving as inspiration for Christina Aguilera's upcoming album.
The pop star says that the physical and mental exercise is helping her find inner peace, and that's influencing her music-making process.
"Taking a love for yoga and breathing ... not looking at it as an exercise, but just feeling more one with the Earth and everyone being connected, it'll definitely have a reflection on the new record," Aguilera said in a recent interview.
She has "loosely been working on my record for a couple years now," even when she was pregnant with her daughter, who is 1.
And now, "it's like really down to business and I've made a lot of headway and progress on the record, and you will see sort of the difference between this record and others in the past."
Aguilera, 34, said she wants to release a new album next year. It would be the follow-up to 2012's "Lotus."
"I am hoping for it to be next year and maybe around the time ... I return for (live episodes of) 'The Voice' season 10," she said.
This month she is pre-taping the beginning of season 10 of NBC's "The Voice," which will air next year. Season nine, with Gwen Stefani in Aguilera's chair, premiered last month.
The Grammy winner said because two seasons of the show tape simultaneously, she has had to take breaks from the Emmy-winning series.
"I absolutely need those breaks," she said, laughing. "I will wholeheartedly, openly be honest about it and just say that. I think it's a little easier for Blake (Shelton) and Adam (Levine) -- the show has definitely catapulted their careers to new heights and it's awesome -- but they're not parents yet. ...I love being a mom and I think life is all about balance and to me it's really important to take time off from the show."
"It also keeps things fresh," she continued. "They pump it out twice a year so for me personally, I feel like I'm better at my position on the show and being a coach to people if I'm not juggling two teams at once while one season is being pre-taped and the other's airing ... which is what ends up happening."
Aguilera says she's been keeping her big voice intact in between albums and tours, and she's learned to care less about being a technical singer and has learned to develop a "signature style."
"Maybe when I was younger and very green ... to the business and just wanting to emulate my idols, I would try probably harder to cross T's and dot I's and hit certain notes," she said. "But music is such an emotion to me and it's so felt from the heart, that at this point in my life it's really not about the image of a great singer, but the emotion of a great singer."