The model also touches on her new endeavor, Future Prosperity, a platform and retailer that's advancing sustainability.
Alexis Ren is looking on the bright side following her split from Noah Centineo. The 23-year-old model and the To All the Boys I've Loved Before star called it quits earlier this year after more than a year of dating -- and she has since reflected on what she wants for her future.
"I wanted a better relationship with myself after that," Ren tells ET's Katie Krause. "That was definitely the conversation I had. I was like, 'How can I now treat myself better? I think a lot of people when a breakup happens, we think it's our fault. We think we could have done things better. We could have done this. And for me it was like, 'OK, the universe wants me to focus on myself,' and I can totally do that."
Admitting that self-love and self-healing "is not the funnest thing ever," Ren channeled all her emotions into music and poetry and knew she "needed to evolve" and create.
"Heartbreak just breaks you open, and here's your soul and, like, create with it," she shares. "So, that's exactly what happened."
Ren, who wrote poetry for the past two years, says her breakup also inspired her to write R&B music. While she notes that music has always been a part of her life, she never thought she would see herself pursuing a singing career until the coronavirus pandemic hit and she had more time to write.
"Once COVID hit, I was like, 'This is an opportunity for me to do this. I'm going to take this as a lesson,'" she shares. "So I went super, super deep into that. I wrote about 20 songs in two weeks, which is, like, crazy."
Ren's relationships fueled her lyrics as she wrote songs about unconditional love, fear of intimacy and vulnerability.
"I always use the relationships in my life as a great way to learn deeper about myself. So that definitely had something to do with it. But in return, I got to see my relationship with the Earth, my relationship with my family, and so I've written about it all," Ren says. "Because I think the relationships in our lives are our biggest teachers, because they literally are our closest reflections to each other…Because no relationship is a failure, it's a lesson or a blessing. So, just taking it one way or the other and evolving it from there."
As for the sound that she's going for, Ren says most of the songs she's created are acoustic pop, but she would like to venture towards an R&B and trap sound. "Which is very intimidating, but it's my favorite genre," she says. "Like, sexy and empowering. And it has this very nice progressive trap bass that I'm obsessed with. So it's either going to [be] acoustic beautiful, or trap and sexy and cool. It's just super fun because there's no roof."
Ren was also looking forward to kicking off an acting career at the beginning of the year. However, due to the pandemic, that was put on hold.
"This year was supposed to be acting for me…I booked my first TV show, and then I also booked my first film," she recalls. "And I was like, 'Oh my god, it's going to happen. I'm so excited!' Because acting for me is super spiritual as well…We were filming in Oklahoma City, and then corona hit and everything stopped. I was like, 'No, why? I don't understand.'"
That break, however, was just what Ren needed to create her new endeavor, Future Prosperity, a platform and retailer that is advancing sustainability and serving as a resource to end society's addiction to plastic.
"Because of this pause I was able to create Future Prosperity and I was able to create Warriors," she says of the business venture and her lifestyle community. "I was able to focus on music as well... It's just focusing on the things that the universe is telling me to."
Ren was inspired to start the sustainability-focused, women-led platform and retailer -- which launches Oct. 8 -- with her co-founder, Vanessa Black, while thinking about the world she wants for future generations. Warriors, on the other hand, was founded with Ren's past in mind. The model, who's been open about her past struggle with an eating disorder, started the "amazing workout and lifestyle community" to provide a system of support to those looking to improve their body image and mindset.
"My companies are my babies right now," she says. "I'm just going to keep focusing on building the companies around me, and make sure that they're self-sustaining, and that they're doing their part in this world, and being a guide for girls who want to follow down this path as well. So, the relationship with Earth and the relationship with my companies are my most important right now."
Ren will still continue to pursue her singing and acting dreams with a new mindset for her future.
"My mindset now is, if I'm ever going to do something, just like go for it," she states. "I always tell people, I learn the best [when you] just throw me in with the sharks."
"Performing is really special to me, so I hope that the right roles come to play in the next five years, as far as acting," Ren shares of what she hopes her future looks like. "And to evolve, to grow as a better person. And then hopefully singing. Singing to me is my safe place, it's where I can go…Literally, this is my soul. Like, here's my soul."
For more on Ren -- including his she maintains a friendship with ex Alan Bersten -- watch the video below.