"I've got to play the cards right," the singer says of her Season 10 strategy
As Season 10’s sole female coach tells PEOPLE, she is determined to give the guys a run for their money this time.
“We’re going to win it,” Aguilera, 35, declares at the show’s press conference in L.A. “[I’m] in it to win it this time [and] break the girl curse.”
“I’ve got to play the cards right,” she says of her game plan. “I’ve been taking notes from the guys for years now. Adam [Levine] came in full force [since] Season 1. He’s like the ultimate salesman [and] I’ve taken notes from this guy for years now.”
Meanwhile, “Pharrell just comes in and he’s just Mr. Humble like he’s got his own strategy, which is awesome, and that works for him,” Aguilera explains.
Even three-time winning coach Levine, 36, agrees a female victory is overdue. “I want to see a girl win,” he shares.
Aguilera and last season’s female coach Gwen Stefani, 46, have swapped places in the shiny red swivel chairs for a few rounds now. But despite never being on the show at the same time, the ladies are in this together.
“When Gwen came on, I remember telling her at [her son] Zuma’s birthday party, ‘Just do me one favor when you go in,'” says Aguilera. “I think I was like eight months pregnant and like, ‘Please, give the boys hell. Break the girl curse.’ And it still hasn’t been done yet, so I know she’s rooting me on, too, to come try and fix that.”
Speaking to her male costars – including Stefani’s boyfriend Blake Shelton, 39 – Aguilera highlights the support she’ll get when Stefani returns as a mentor to Shelton’s singers. “She’ll be around, I’m sure,” says Aguilera. “I’m going to get her to take my side against all you guys. Girl power.”
When it comes to picking his mentors, Shelton isn’t so concerned about the romantic connection. “I always looked for somebody that I respect – that I know that when they give their opinion I will have no doubt that I’ll agree with their take,” he says.
Stefani is just one name on the star-studded list of talent brought on to give contestants game-changing tips. Diddy will help Pharrell’s team, Aguilera has tapped Patti LaBelle and Levine will team up with breakout star Tori Kelly.
With all the excitement building up, Aguilera emphasizes that enjoying the process is a priority.
“Every year, half the battle – once we start getting into the nitty gritty of competition – is talking the competition out of their own heads,” she says. “As a coach, I find that to be one of the biggest things that I try to help them with … helping them with their headspace and their mindset, encouraging them to move forward and have fun with it.”
The Voice returns to NBC on Monday at 8 p.m. EST.