June 17, 2013

Be Your Own Oprah.

Just the mention of the one word moniker brings to mind the rags to riches, self-made woman’s story.

Oprah is a household name world-wide and stands as a symbol for what happens when faith, gumption and a zest for life meet inspired action. Her long running (25 seasons) TV show remains the highest rated talk show in American history. She has used her notoriety to speak out against abuse, to encourage literacy and raise money to build schools in Africa, to name but a few.

Through her show and O Magazine and now OWN, we have the opportunity to explore spirituality, social justice, entertainment, education, body image and giving back in a whole different light.

As someone who loves being front and center, sharing similar messages, I have viewed the Divine Ms. O as a role model for the kind of determination that took her from  financially impoverished, abusive childhood, to wildly successful adulthood. She set the course and followed the trajectory to where she is now. Although it seems that she became an overnight success, when I looked back at her career path, it took several decades.

Over the years, I have sent query letters requesting the opportunity to write for her publication. The closest I have come has been a letter to the editor that was published in 2005 or 2006 in response to an article the magazine published on tantra. One of my bucket list dreams is to interview Oprah, not just be interviewed by her.

Heck, if I could “manna-fest” the interview with the Dalai Lama, this should be a piece of cake.

Being connected with Oprah lends a sense of credibility to one’s work; a stamp of approval, as it were—I call them ‘Oprah’s Darlings.’ Authors she promotes find that their books skyrocket to best seller status and they are invited to be at the ‘big kids table.’

Earlier in the year, I had the joy of meeting transformational speaker Lisa Nichols when she spoke in New Jersey. She has been on Oprah’s show. Lisa is the enthusiastically heart forward, learning-to-love-herself affirming author and teacher whose hardy “YES-YES!” echoes through her presentations.

She became known to me when I saw The Secret which is the iconic movie that highlights The Law of Attraction. In a pre-event VIP segment, she offered us the opportunity to ask her anything. I mentioned that desire I referenced in the previous paragraph.

She looked me square in the eye and said “Do you really want to know the answer?” I nodded and she said that I needed to keep serving and not worry about Oprah calling me. “Attract, don’t pursue,” she reinforced.

I have less than six degrees of separation from Oprah since I know people who know her and I still harbor this vision that I will receive a call or letter, that will be a fulfillment of that fantasy. Today, I was meeting on the porch of my ‘office away from home,’ aptly named The Zen Den, in Doylestown, PA, with a friend visiting from Chicago.

His name is Daved Beck and he is a dancer, author, facilitator and psychic medium. We were enjoying the late Spring breeze and I shared with him my desire to leap forward in my work. The words “Be your own Oprah” came up. Since we both acknowledge that the more we are hollow reeds or vessels for inspired messages, there are times when we truly don’t remember what we said; therefore, I’m not sure if he offered the sage advice, or I gave it to myself.

Regardless of who voiced it, it got me thinking that I could indeed do that.

Being my own Oprah would mean:

  • Stepping up and speaking out about what I believe in regardless of who might disagree or disapprove
  • Willingness to visible and vulnerable
  • Having faith enough in my own talents and gifts that I share them willingly
  • Overcoming challenges by making positive choices
  • Living my best life every day
  • Helping others live their dreams out loud
  • Seeing myself as a thriver
  • Being colorful and creative.
  • Acknowledging that I am an innovator
  • Connecting with people world-wide through the power of love and the marvels of modern technology
  • Being a generous giver and gracious receiver
  • Diversifying rather than type-casting myself
  • Growing myself steadily
  • Re-framing spirituality
  • Taking on increasingly more expansive challenges

Although I’ve not heard her offer this particular guidance, it resonates with something that could be considered Oprah-esque.

My father would say “They put their pants on one leg at a time just like you do,” so as not to feel intimidated by people. It has served me well as a journalist who has interviewed some potentially ego-driven folks and others who might seem inaccessible.

My mother offered “Walk in like you own the joint, with eye contact and head held high,”and I added ‘knockers up.’

So, what is my next chapter? I have no idea. I am open and willing to explore what it means as I turn page after page, as surprised as anyone with what is inscribed within.

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Ed: Sara Crolick

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