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Shakira struggled to write new music after becoming a mum

The Colombian sensation is currently promoting her 11th album, titled El Dorado.

Shakira found making new music challenging after putting her career on hold to raise her children.

The Colombian singer took a hiatus from the spotlight to devote time to her sons, four-year-old Milan and two-year-old Sasha, and found it difficult to return to the studio.

The 40-year-old, who is raising the two boys with her partner, soccer star Gerard Pique, struggled to write new songs, because the creative process not only proved difficult, it also required her to take time away from her kids.

"I was in front of this white canvas and sort of panicking, and I was, at the same time, conflicted because I didn't want to stop spending time with my kids, but I also wanted to attend to my own needs as a creator, as an artist, as a producer," she tells the Associated Press.

Facing writer’s block, the Grammy Award-winner was inspired to approach her new tracks differently, and instead of putting a whole album together, the Hips Don’t Lie hitmaker decided to release songs one by one.

"It completely changed my game and it incentivised me to make more music and not take this whole project as a whole body of work, but just concentrate all of my energy on each song and take and do all of the efforts but one song at a time... instead of looking at this project like a big Everest mountain that I had to climb," she adds. "I began to see it as a... fun road trip."

The global pop sensation premiered four singles before her 11th album El Dorado hit stores last week (ends28May17), and the hitmaking process proved to be freeing for Shakira, allowing her to work at her own pace.

"It was more fun than any of my previous albums because before I had many demands (and) requests by others," she added.

El Dorado, which draws from a mix of genres such as bachata and funk, includes her hit songs La Bicicleta and Chantaje.

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