What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger) Kelly Clarkson

What is the meaning and main idea of Kelly Clarkson's What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger) song? What is the message the song tries to convey? Continue reading this article to find the answers. But, wait, before we further discuss this song, read the complete lyric of the song below as your reference.

What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger)- Kelly Clarkson

You know the bed feels warmer
Sleeping here alone
You know I dream in color
And do the things I want

You think you've got the best of me
Think you've had the last laugh
Bet you think that everything good is gone
Think you left me broken down
Think that I'll come running back
Baby, you don't know me
'Cause you're dead wrong

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger
Stand a little taller
Doesn't mean I'm lonely when I'm alone
What doesn't kill you makes a fighter
Footsteps even lighter
Doesn't mean I'm over 'cause you're gone
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, stronger
Just me, myself, and I
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger
Stand a little taller
Doesn't mean I'm lonely when I'm alone

You heard that I was starting over with someone new
They told you I was moving on, over you
You didn't think that I'd come back
I've come back swinging
You tried to break me
But you see


Thanks to you I've got a new thing started
Thanks to you I'm not the broken hearted
Thanks to you I'm finally thinking about me
You know in the end,
The day you left was just my beginning
In the end


Meaning, Main Idea, and Message of The Song

In a nutshell, this Kelly Clarkson's What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger) song tells us about a girl's endurance of a bad situation. The situation specifically refers to the time when she is broken hearted after her boy leaves her. You know when faced with painful situation, people basically show two kinds of reaction: giving up or struggling. Those who (undeliberately) decide to give up will usually keep complaining and blaming others for the situation they face. In contrast, those who decide to struggle, even though initially show almost the same reaction as the first group of people, they will finally choose to look at the good side of the situation they face. And it is the later that the girl in the song exactly does. After being down for some times, she finally tries to look at the positive things of her loneliness. And guess what, when she finds those things, instead of sadness and grief, it is happiness that she finally feels.

Main Idea of Each Verse

As you can see in the complete lyric above, the song consists of six verses with the chorus repeated three times. The first verse tells about the girl's freedom she now feels after her boy leaves her. Without him, she feels the bed warmer. She also could sleep soundly and "dream in color." Moreover, she now can do "things she wants." It is clear, then, that the girl is now happy with her current situation.

The second verse tells about the girl's response to her boy's 'decision' of leaving her. Instead of being broken hearted and down all the time, she enjoys and lives her new beatiful life. If the boy ever thinks that with the breaking of their relationship "everything good is gone" and she left "broken down", then this verse clearly states that he is "dead wrong."

The third verse, the chorus part, emphasizes what she has experienced and has successfully overcome. "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger" and so the line goes. The verse, especially this line, clearly explains that if we are able to get through bad situation, then the situation will give extra strenght to us. As for the girl in this song, she wants to express that since she doesn't fall apart because of the bad situation she faces, she is now stronger and tougher that before. She is ready to start her new life with a new, more difficult, challenge.

The next verse depicts her statement to her ex boy that she is alright and has started a better life. "I'm not falling apart," that is the main message the girl wants to express to her ex boy.

In the last verse, besides her first reaction to their separation, the girl now feels thankful for what has happened. She is no longer sad and complaining the situation and cursing the boy. She is now happy and hence she thanks the boy since it is what he has done, namely leaving her, that has given her a chance to start a new, better and happier life.

Well, that's my humble interpretation of Kelly Clarkson's What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger) song. Your comments are higly appreciated.


  1. This really helped! This was the only thing I could find that actually defined the song and gave the meanings. Thankyou!!

  2. Thanks you so much it help me because I had a homework and tis help me about the meaning of the song

  3. This website helped me, and I put it under my favorites page, but what is the tone of the song?

    1. listen to the music video 2 find out the tone!!!!

  4. thanks for the hel[p... i am doing a project on the positive influence on this song towards americans and u sorta helped me out a bit. Next time tho, u might wanna explain more and be a bit clearer.


  5. I'm doing a leadership project... thanx so much for the help