“Two of my kids were in school during the exact hours that I was at home,” she says in the latest issue of PEOPLE “They would get back at 3:30 p.m. just as I’d be leaving to do The Kelly File. I hadn’t tucked them into bed on a weeknight in three years.”
With her contract nearing its end in 2016, Kelly weighed her options and decided to leave the network.
“It was time to do a gut check, to make sure I was happy and doing what I’m supposed to,” she says. “The answer was clearly no. It was time to make a change.”
WATCH: Megyn Kelly Shares the Effects Donald Trump’s Attacks Have Had on Her Life Professionally and Personally
At the same time, working in what she describes as the “snake pit” of cable news wasn’t her calling.
“I’m not a political animal and I never have been,” she says. “The subject matter was not true to my soul.”
Kelly officially left Fox News in January and signed on at NBC, where her new morning talk show, Megyn Kelly Today, will premiere Sept. 25 at 9 a.m. ET.
The decision has been life-changing for her and her husband Douglas Brunt, along with their three children: Yates, 8, Yardley, 6, and Thatcher, 3.
“I feel less stressed, and less distant from the things that matter to me — my husband and my children,” she says. “My life.”
For more on Megyn Kelly, pick up the latets issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.