Saturday 3rd November, Ariana Grande surprised us all with the release of her new single “thank u, next”.
A break up anthem with a difference, “thank u, next” focuses on what Ariana has learned from each of her past relationships and how this has helped her to become “so amazing”. Ariana sets and example to all her fans on how to face adversity head on and move on to better things.
Here’s 5 things I learned from “thank u, next”
1. Look back, but don’t stare
Ariana opens the song by taking a look back at all her past relationships. Mentioning each high profile high profile ex by name, she doesn’t shy away from acknowledging her past and the issues that lead to the break up of these relationships.
The past can provide you with information about yourself and looking back at this can help you reflect. However this should not necessarily inform your future or determine your outlook. Reflecting too much on the past can make it hard to stay optimistic, we often focus on the negatives rather than the positives. Looking too deep into our past makes it hard to envisage a future without these same issues occurring.
As Ariana moves into the final verse of the song, she begins to look into the future and discusses her dreams of marriage. She hasn’t let her past failing of relationships ruin her ideal picture of her future. And neither should you.
2. Learn from the past and take it into the future
Throughout the song Ariana shares some painful moments that she’s been through over the past couple of years. From the death of her ex Mac Miller, the end of her engagement, family problems and her own struggles with mental health. But she also hints at how ultimately, she’s going to come out stronger from the lessons she’s taught herself.
You Learn about yourself when things don’t go the way you planned them. We learn from the mistakes we have made. Getting hurt allows us to learn more about ourselves as people and allows for self-growth. Taking these lessons with us into the future helps us to not make the same mistakes and betters us as a person. You too can turn out amazing.
3. The importance of self-love
Unlike other break up anthems that focus on getting over the hurt of a past relationship by scoring your exes, Ariana sings from a place of self-love as opposed to emptiness and hurt. Instead of moving on with another relationship to get over the past, she is now focusing on her relationship with herself.
Taking time to look after yourself without compromising for others is so important. Focusing on our happiness will help us to lead a better life. Going forward into the future with self-love and acceptance will help us in all aspects of life. The Key to success in any area is confidence within yourself, no one has time for self doubt.
4. The importance of your support system outside of your relationship
In times of a break up we turn to the people around us for support. Ariana sings about how spending more time with her friends has helped her to stop worrying about the past. She also speaks about her close relationship with her mother, who she wants to walk her down the aisle some day.
After a relationship ends it is these people who we look to for support through the pain. That is why having this support network is so important. Laughter and good times with friends helps us to get over the bad times of the past.
5. There’s strength in vulnerability
“thank u, next” is undoubtedly Ariana’s most vulnerable song yet. Explicitly talking about all her past exes by name and her dreams for the future, she opens up to fans.
“thank u, next” has also been Ariana’s most successful single. It broke Spotify’s record for single day streams from a female artist 2 days in a row and became the fastest single to surpass 100 million streams in Spotify history. It is Ariana’s first number one in the singles charts in both the UK and USA.
This success was followed by and iconic video which broke the record for the biggest music video debut in YouTube history, earning over 50 million views in the first 24 hours.
While this commercial success is amazing the real success of the song lies in Ariana’s openness with her fans which has allowed so many people to connect with the song. There is a reason so many people are listening to the song and that is because we can all relate to it in some capacity.
Allowing ourselves to open up and be vulnerable to the people around us will help you to make deeper connections. We all go through the same struggles in life and we can all relate to each other. A problem shared is a problem halved and vulnerability can be the first step forward in moving on.
Cathal McCaughey is a final year student on the BSc in Communication Management & Public Relations at Ulster University and a Study USA alumni of College of St. Benedict / St. John’s University MN. He can be contacted on: Instagram – @Cathal_10 / Twitter – @Cathal__10 / Linkedin – http://www.linkedin.com/in/cathalmccaughey