Joe NicholsJoe Nichols is soaring high after hitting No. 1 on the country singles charts with 'Gimmie That Girl.' He also has much more perspective these days -- in both his professional and personal lives. In October 2007, Joe entered rehab just one month after getting married, and admits that it helped him gain focus and happiness.

"I think I appreciate it more," Joe told the The San Francisco Chronicle. "[I feel] the humility that came along with treatment -- not humiliation -- humility that came along with that. And gratitude. It trickles into what I'm feeling today."

Having achieved his first chart-topper since 2005's 'Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off,' shows not only his life, but his career is back on track as well. "Learning how to relive again on life's terms sure doesn't do much for your confidence," Joe admits. "You have to kind of walk in faith that the next step is going to be just a little bit better than the last step. So little by little, it's been a long journey just to get here, and I think we've got a long way to go, but it certainly is a big huge step toward okay."

His wife Heather says he is now the person she thought she married, and he's nothing like the Joe she knew before tying the knot. "The person he was then was a very empty guy," she says. Heather sat him down one day and told him she wanted him to get better for his own good. And if he wasn't willing to do that, she said she wasn't going to sit around and watch him kill himself.

These days, Heather's husband is comfortable with himself, funny and outgoing. "I think addiction hides the person you are and makes you this soulless person." Admitting that "Now it's like his light is back on, and he shares himself with everyone. Everyone sees that light, and he draws you in."

'Gimmie That Girl' is from Joe's latest album, 'Old Things New,' and the Arkansas native says this song means a bit more to him than usual. "It's been kind of a bumpy ride between here and the last No. 1 we had, so it makes it a little bit more extra special this time around. It's a very meaningful journey."

Joe is expected to follow up 'Gimmie That Girl' with the single, 'Shape I'm In.' The San Francisco Chronicle also reports he is thinking about expanding his family from two to three. Could a Baby Nichols be in the works?

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