Carrie Underwood wants to inspire women to realise they don't have to sacrifice their dreams to raise a family.

The 'Before He Cheats' hitmaker has been joined on her 'Cry Pretty Tour 360' by her husband Mike Fisher and their sons Isaiah, four, and Jacob, eight months, and though she admitted it is "really difficult" to juggle her professional and personal commitments, she wants to set an example.

She said: "Women in this industry carry a lot on them.

"I think that's something people don't really think about. You see us on stage, and you see the rhinestones and the make-up and the hair; you don't see all the hours that went into everything else.

"I feel like there's a lot of women who feel like they have to give up [having a family] to follow their dreams, and hopefully they can see that you can juggle.

"I'm not gonna lie. It's hard, but you get people around you who will help and be a part of your family. You can have it all. We are living the dream."

And the 36-year-old star - who insists on attending to her baby son's night wakings herself, even though she's got a nanny and assistant on hand - admitted her own experiences have given her even more respect for the female singers she admired when she was growing up because now she understands just how tricky things can be.

She added in an interview with USA Today newspaper: "I never knew what it was like to be a mom and a wife and a woman in this business until I became those things.

"It makes me respect those women that I grew up idolising even more, and I didn't even know all that they had on their plate."