In a live interview, Oprah sits down with New York Times best-selling author Cheryl Strayed. As a part of her “Path Made Clear” book tour, Oprah is joined on stage by this special guest, who impacted her journey, for a unique one-on-one conversation. Oprah and Cheryl discuss the meaning of forgiveness and the importance of vulnerability and regret. Cheryl also talks about turning 50 and why she now puts herself first. Cheryl’s best-selling memoir “Wild,” which recounted her spiritual journey hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, was chosen as an Oprah’s Book Club selection and went on to become a critically acclaimed film starring Reese Witherspoon.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
What if you only ever changed a line of one person or managed to change a single human destiny? Just one than yours is a life where lived because to extend the hand to those you dont know and help them along their journey with spontaneous acts of kindness on notice and perhaps even unremarked is the most remarkable thing you can do. Sometimes it takes courage, sometimes something more, but all the good you can do in this life begins with the belief that you can be to change your sick. Don't ever stop believing see how we are making a difference at pen medicine. That is another reason why your life is worth pen medicine, I'm
we're. Winfrey, welcome to supersede conversations the podcast. I believe that one of the most valuable gives you can give yourself is time taking time to be more fully present. Your journey to become more inspired and connected to the deeper world around us starts right now, Stray. So what am I reports from you comes from another book that you rode call tiny, beautiful things? Yes, and I love I quote, you say. nobody is going to do your life for you. You have to do it yourself, whether you are rich or poor out of money or wake you get in the beneficiary of ridiculous fortune or terrible injustice. You have to do it, no matter. What is true, no matter what is hard, no matter what unjust sacks
fucking things have befallen. You self pity is dead in road. You make the choice to drive down it. It's up to you to decide to state park their turn around and drive out. Love that, because, thank you, I know you walk more than a thousand miles actually. Find yourselves right, but for any one I think the essence of that quote lies in its really about reclaiming yourself, absolutely not so much about what you are talking about. The meaning of forgiveness is about accepting that you're not gonna, go back and change the US, and I think sometimes we can get caught in the past. The injustice was so true or so great that you think no wait a minute, I'm if I continue to make this claim against the thing. The bad thing that happened to me or the thing that should have done this way or that are the thing that I should have received in didn't in some ways
that's how I will be redeemed by continuing to tell the story of complaint and what that quotas about an and everything about what you just said is about say no, I relinquish the sorrows of the past and now feed upon them and let them nurture what I need to go forward. How I need to make my life out of the good things that I received the bad things that happened to me and that their both gifts in the end, you know, I know you turn fifty this year. I remember when I turned fifty. Was this a milestone for you in other ways? How did you feel turning fifty? Absolutely, I think, fifty for me, every decade has been a milestone and each one has led me in the direction of where I feel that I'm out right now- and that is this- that the best way for me to articulate what fifty.
This meant to me is I finally get to put myself in the equation that I am part of the equation that I am not only about what do you need and what I give you and will you like me if I do this? Instead, he related, I stepped into Fifty and I thought you know what I am. to say it. I need to sleep more ya. What do I want, rather than what will make you happy? I think that we have talked about this before we both have this people. Please urge you. Suddenly
This is the female disease and in some men of it too, but what I figured out is like my life is up to me and I've been preaching this for years and my books, I've been telling this in the form of my advice, is dear sugar, that you are responsible for your life and part of that is that you get to say if you're bathrooms can be really Massey, for example. Yes, you got to say No, and you got to say a bigger. Yes, you know one of the things I learned after turn. Fifty is that you also have the right to change your mind because it used to be like. Oh my god, I said, do you have the right to
and your mind do believe. Everyone has a purpose. Absolutely yes, and I know that your life has changed so much and after a while, but you say, your purpose is still the same yeah. Well it s the interesting thing. I think I get that question over and over and wild was published on twenty twelve Oprah restarted her book club. For it there was a movie certain resource, but a lot of good things happened, but in my experience all that stuff was wonderful, but it was ex turn all the person. I was the woman who wrote that book, the woman who had apprentice herself for years to the craft of writing, and so she could write that book and the person who really went on that emotional journey. You know who discovered other things I did on the trail. Those things are unchanged: they aren't changed by money or fame or having risk Witherspoon. Pretend that choose you.
And you know? I think that I am. I feel really fortunate that that happened to me when I was in my forties, because I knew that I always stay grounded in the person I was all along and never losing track of. That was never even a question. Don't go anywhere or to come after this short break Today's episode is supported by american heritage. Chocolate have you ever baked anything that required graded chocolate? It can be a little messy and time consuming. Eric inherited chocolate, Mars, Wrigley Brand has the answer. Finally, graded baking chocolate, easy to use and easy to melt all I have to do is measure and including your favorite recipes Eric inherited chocolate, replace a semi sweet chocolate one to one in any recipe from we'd savory dishes that work for breakfast lunch dinner and everything in between
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Eric inherited chocolate, dot com, you know, so if you will see themselves in your writing, you taught me how to be vulnerable and open, and yet so many people still fear it. Why are we so afraid to open up ourselves when that same vulnerability? In truth is what actually allows you to connect to people? Well, I think it's the stories that we ve received about what strength is
vulnerability is an end in my work. I am always saying part of writing your life. Just like writing in real life is, is revising, and so every received narrative we have about what strength is, is saying, don't be vulnerable? Don't don't reveal yourself, don't tell the truth. I dont admit to your flaws. Dont do like you know what you did on television for years is parade your flaws in front of millions of people. You paraded other people's fears and sorrows and mistakes and tragedies, and what happened is a bunch of people said me too. They saw themselves and Neil, and I think when it comes to vulnerability you you have obvious
been a great teacher to me and to everyone in this room. These are my children and what you taught us and what I hope that I've done in contributing to that in my books as well. Is that actually that story about ball, nobility being weakness, is a lie that the strongest bravest thing we can possibly do is tell the truth, and I think that that's what vulnerability is that it is now. So you went those thousand miles to find. You shall be always ask if you do again- and you say you don't do do-
Worse, I thought well, it's you know. As I was listening to you talk, and I know I am not alone in this. Every sentence out of your mouth, a little bell was rung inside of me, and it was this recognition thing that you're talking about you know you. You are this wise woman who tells us a lot of things, but what you, most importantly, tell us is what we already know what we know to be the truth within us, and I think that this idea of regret is about again a false narrative of what a perfect life is. If we go back and undue all the mistakes we made, we wouldn't be the people we are now in
so I say thank you for all the things. I regret thank you for all the things that, if I had known better, I would have done differently because they taught me they taught me who I am now and they also tested me and I think that's a really important piece of the human experience. We don't want our lives to be seamless, uneasy, that's a boring life. I mean it's hard for me to say that as a mom, because I want my children to live in a bubble and never have their hearts broken are never have those sorts of struggles that I've had and yet I know those are the things that made me in there. There, the things that made you yes and you have ways such Sharll and Ryan have the most incredible children. Thank you. So did you all together come up with the philosophy of how to raise these kids, who are.
who are kind were filled with grace were curious, who go to sleep, but the bears. Will you know it was interesting? I owe you told that that wonderful story about being on this. Said and not knowing how to tuck in a child, and I want to share a story with you about the making of wild so
My daughter Bobby, whose named after my mother Bobby, actually played the young me in the movie while suit had just turned eight Reese Witherspoon, plays the adult me and Bobby. My daughter plays the young May, which was this incredibly emotional journey, and what happened is the first day on the said she was not there to actually work that day. She was just doing some costume stuff and she met Laura Dern who place my mother. So she was introduced to Laura, like ok Bobby this beautiful six foot tall blonde actresses, going to pretend to be your mother and there like nice to meet you nice to meet you, and it just so happens that Laura was in make up at that time. She had just been beaten up by the man who play my father ass though she had this black eye and this bloody face, and my little eight year old daughter meets her at the director says to Laura. You know I just want to shoot some experimental scenes Laura.
Those stand at the end of this long hallway and he looks John Mark. Where lay the director looks at my daughter, Bobby and says this: is your mother run down the hallway and leap into her arms, and so my daughter looks up at me and I go to what he says: He runs down the hallway and she leaves into Laura turns arms. Laura Dern who choose just man whose looks like she's been beat up and she holds cheeks. She holds onto Laura like this, a little love monkey and we can hear cars, lorries MIKE's out. We can hear my daughter moaning with pleasure as she is holding the stranger she says and I burst into tears, because I knew what I have given. My daughter is what my mother gave me: does that innate sense that she was capable of deep love? She knew how to leap into a mother's arms, because I had loved her that way.
Beautiful beautiful and you know what's really interesting to me, Oprah's, you know you didn't get that. I got that and yet here we are. We took our jagged pass, those pass that were made clear to us at some point and we ended up at the same place. So I think you know you mentioned that empty bowl. I have one empty bowl and one full bowl. I have the fullness that my mother loved me that all of that stuff she put in my bowl- and I have the father who didn't love me, but what what happens with the sorrows and the joys and the triumphs and the losses is if we do life right, I think we use them all ways to nurture us down the path, and sometimes it's a hard lesson, and sometimes it's a beautiful one. But if we
Let me end up in the same place: shawls strayed. Thank you. I'm over Winfrey and you ve been listing to supersede conversations the pod cast. You can follow superficial on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook if you haven't yet go to apple podcast, unsubscribe rate and reviewed this punk cast join me next week for another superbowl conversation. Thank you for listening.
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Transcript generated on 2020-10-05.