In 2010 I spent two hours interviewing Cameron Diaz for a major women's magazine. Her views on life and womanhood were far more thoughtful, spiritual and progressive than I had expected, bearing in mind her blonde and breezy public persona. Here is the unedited version of our interview, minus some introductory chatter at the beginning. I hope you enjoy it.
What about you? How have you evolved?
There’s a lot. I think that over the last few years there have been a lot of things that have sort of propelled me and pushed me into different stages of growth. One being my father dying – that was a huge one and that reorganizes everything in your life, and continues to. In wonderful ways although obviously the loss is horrible and devastating. You don’t want to have it. but you have to take something good from it to figure out. I have learned a lot about what I want in my life having gone through that loss for myself and for my family. So that a big part of it. I also think that just the normal everyday ways we live our lives – I am 38 years old right now, it’s a great age. I love being 38 and I am excited about being 39 and I am excited about being 40 and its because I feel like life gets better as you get older. You know yourself better, you know what you want, you’re stronger mentally emotionally and physically –and I’ve been having this evolution of mind body and spirit for I think…more intensely over the last few years…but its the course of life. And being in my late 30s is certainly much different than being in my late 20s.
So the big catalyst for you was the passing of your father?
Yes, and just maturing. At 35 I think women, starting at 27 is like a big thing
What, you mean like the Saturn’s return or something?
Exactly. How old are you?
You’ll see at 35, there’s going to be settlement from all of those past years from 27. From 27 to 34 there’s that seven year spam where you have done a ton of work and you have gone …I’m sure at 27 there was a burst of knowledge…at 35 comes another one. But it’s a much more subtle one. Because you have all the knowledge that you gained over the last 7 years and it’s a bigger resolve within yourself. It’s easier to make the good decisions you need to make. The 27 – 34 is the questioning and the revelation that everything you thought you knew when you were 22 and 23 when you thought you had the world figured out…you’re reorganizing all of that. and at 35 your life becoming so much more clear…a and all the fringe shit you don’t need just gets cuts away.
What gets cut away? Behaviors?
Everything. Everything. People, behaviors, everything. I think a lot of people do a good cropping of people from 27 to 34 and then 35 is the big hedge cut. Its like buzz cut every body! It’s hard.
But that is a big part of the growth at that period of time and then you start working the foundation of the things that did stay. You’re like these are the things I am confident on now. Then at 35 you are ready to go I am just not doing that any more and you feel confident in that decisions and you feel confident in that decision because you’ve done the work. At 38, whats so wonderful about it is that your really lose so much judgment for other people and yourself. The mistake that you make….you can see the traps coming towards you that you would normally have fallen for and you can change…make different decisions to have a different result. You can change pattern. And you can start making better clearer decisions because you have all the experience behind you.
I am going to get the roast chicken…do you guys have sweet potatoes by any chance? Don’t worry about the potato puree I’ll take the chard. Do you have quinoa?
So you were saying…35 is this kind of watershed year. I feel like in a very biological sense that 35 is a cut off – that I have kind of contended with myself, because I don’t have kids, and I always thought I wanted them, and now I am not sure because I don’t feel ready – but there’s this whole pressure, like at 35 apparently your eggs start shriveling up and they are not behaving in the same way. Is that part of it? Is that part of why it is a watershed year? Like ‘this is where I am at with my fertility?’
I think that’s natural, if you think you’ve always wanted them. But a lot of my girlfriends who are 35, they will do that. They will go ‘yeah I’ve got to do it now’, or ‘if I don’t I am OK’. And I hear that so much more from my girlfriends. It’s like…I like my life. And then you have your girlfriends who have kids, and the one who don’t have kids. And they’re like its like wow…it’s a lot. Do I want to change my life completely? Is that the way I want to change my life completely? There are so many different ways to live your life. You can do whatever you want in your life. You really can. I really believe that. And its just matter of what choices you make. And maybe this society puts us in this position of choosing.
Maybe before we’re ready to choose?
I see it with a lot of my girlfriends who had kids younger, saying, “I didn’t know what I was getting myself into.” Everybody is on their own path, but today we live where women are feeling less and less pressure to live under the constraints, ideals that maybe they don’t believe in. That don’t apply to them.
It’s a gift. We’re a privileged group of women who have that ability to make the choice.
Absolutely. To be able to make the decision where you don’t need to have a family just to exist. A lot of women need a man to be able to pay the rent, or create a family life. I think the ideal of that is…that’s something that made sense at a time and still does to certain people, but it doesn’t need to make sense for everyone. It’s not an absolute for everyone.
As evolved, as we are I think there’s still pressure, a very traditional pressure. I think that I have felt like ‘oh, I’m on the shelf’. I never thought about it when I was in my 20s and when I turned 30 I was like…I started feeling something…a guilt or something that was prodding me to be in a place that maybe I wasn’t psychologically ready for. Even the most evolved women friends of mine who are in their late thirties and forties are all going through the same feelings, and I am trying to figure out ‘what part of your sadness is to do with yourself, and what part is to do with society saying you should be doing this?’ Because you know, we can freeze our eggs, we can call on our female support groups to help us if we do get pregnant. Maybe I am too trapped in a seventies utopian village dream…
Well it takes a village. I see it with all my friends. Even if they have nannies or the grandparents help out or whatever it is. You can’t really do it totally on your own and it be healthy for you. For the child, or the relationship as well. With the child and just in general. I don’t think it’s a healthy thing to just solely do that. Go to a village where there are women absolutely where that’s what they do. They have children. And the village all helps take care of them. Everyone does their part. I think that when I talk to my girlfriends about the whole thing we approach it from a place of what is…if there’s dissatisfaction in your life, where is that dissatisfaction coming from? If it really is that you want to have a child and give life, raise that life, create a human being to deliver to the world…that’s a huge responsibility. If that feels like your calling and your purpose then yes. And if you’re at 38 and you haven’t done it yet, there’s other questions to be asked, like why it hasn’t happened yet? It’s bigger than just making the decision to have the child because you think its something you’re supposed to do. You have to look at the big picture and look at what it is you want out of your life, not just that society has said it’s something you should do. And um, I have never personally felt the pressure of having to have a child. I am very lucky; my family has never put that pressure on me. My sister has four children. She did it, she took care of it. And my parents would never put that on me. It would only be if I wanted to do it, then they would be happy. If I don’t, I am sure they might have their own disappointment but they would never put it on me? And in addition, I just really don’t care what other people think outside that. I really don’t care what society thinks I should do. I live my life the way I want to live it, and I love my life. I am blessed every single day. I feel very fortunate, I feel like I am the luckiest of the lucky, and I don’t take that for granted. So I feel like if I felt like there was something missing in my life in that way, then I would address it. I would be doing something different in my life if that were what I wanted. That’s just how I live my life
You seem to operate very much in the present. So tomorrow you might wake up and be like ‘I need to have kids’?
Whatever. If I woke up tomorrow and thought ‘I have to have children’, I would sit with it. I wouldn’t be impulsive. I would sit with it and be like ‘hey this is a new thought. Let’s explore this. What is it that makes me feel that all of sudden I need this. Am I feeling insecure about something? Am I feeling like something is getting away from me that I want to hold on to? Do I feel the pressure of other people trying to tell me what I need to do? Are they right? Am I wrong? Or is that I really feel like I have something to offer a child that I really want to give?’ Creating a life and creating a person….do I think that the value of that is worth me at this time in my life doing, over what I would be doing without that responsibility? So now…this is the time for me to do that. Ok I’ll do it. That would have to be the only way I would make that decision
A considered decision.
A considered decision, for the right reasons. Not because I feel any pressure from any place, from any one. That’s how you end up unhappy in your life. And I’m not an impulsive person at all. I‘m a very practical person. I’m very thoughtful about the things that I do. I wouldn’t ever reach that decision that out of the blue.
Have you always been someone who always thinks deeply about decisions, and considers things?
It’s definitely a version of me, it’s been an evolution to this place. I think that we all evolve through our lessons. I have been very fortunate in my life to have met amazing people, to have had relationships with all kinds of different people all over the world, from different walks of life, with different intellects and interests and ambitions – across the board. That’s one of the great joys of my life – the people I have been able to be in contact with. Even the people that come up to me on a daily basis to say ‘hello’ because they know who I am. All of that is an enrichment of my life and it helps me formulate…I’m always being open to considering other ways and the possibilities of what the spectrum of experience is, how broad it can be. And I take a lot of joy in finding out what my boundaries are.
By being completely open?
Yes. By being completely open and allowing things to come in. I never put out “no”. I never say never. Sure go ahead, let’s give it a go! Unless I have already had the experience and I know what it is and I go ‘you know what, its not for me’. But new experiences and new ideas and new ways of thinking – I’m open to all of it and I will try it and if it doesn’t work for me I am not going to do it. But I won’t put a limit on it.
What new experiences are you exploring right now?
Something really major for me at this time in my life has been an interesting journey...and I am really happy to be on it…I have been, since Charlie’s Angels…before Charlie’s Angels I never ever had worked out. I was an athlete, I liked doing physical things but I got lazy and I got out of my body and I didn’t have any connection to it. I was in my 20s, I was invincible. And then I did Charlie’s angels, I got connected to my body again, it was very intense experience but I really enjoyed it because I was gaining not only physical strength, but it helped me in a mental and emotional way. When you challenge yourself and put yourself into challenges you really overcome. The benefit of that is that you build strength inside yourself mentally and emotionally. You push your limits. You expand yourself so you can be capable of doing more and accomplishing more. And its has affected me in every aspect of my life. Emotionally, I realized that pain is only temporary. The physical pain I went through helped me understand emotionally and mentally that pain is only temporary and you can get through pain, in times that are hard, whether it’s a breakup or a fight with a friend or a complication that you can’t figure out, and its bringing some complexity to your life that is painful, you go I know I can get through this, this is only temporary and if I do the work and work hard and push through the challenge on the other side there is this massive payoff, I am going to gain the knowledge didn’t have before, I am going to be stronger, more capable, a bigger vessel to hold more, and that set me up on a course. Working out and training and keeping that part of my life in my everyday routine, has helped me accomplish so many things in my life because that was the anchor and the catalyst at the same time to help me in other aspect of my life. More recently, what I have added to that because before, it was just like going to the gym, and I am notoriously known for being an eater. I eat everything and anything. I love food. Its one of the benefits of being the skinny girl with the high metabolism, but I always worked out so I could get away with it. But as I got older I realized on so many levels, that you have to make choices in your life, changes that you have to make, changes of habit and lifestyle that set you up in a course into the next phase of your life. And something I have started doing just recently in the last two months, since the new year, something I have been working towards over the last year or so which was I need to make a change in my lifestyle, in my habits, because I know I cant do this forever – and that's eat what I want when I want.
You had been eating whatever you wanted up until two months ago?
Yes. Food is my pleasure. I love fried foods. And I decided that after taking a look at the way that my body is changing and just the general lack of discipline. Eating is something we do several times a day, it’s a huge part of our lives, and its how we stay alive! Its like any decision or any habit that you make on a daily basis – if you are making bad decisions all day long it eventually racks up. And then what you have is a bad result of those decisions.
Were you feeling a bad result?
I was feeling a bad result. Just physically. I decided to sort of go ‘ok I am going to start changing my habits, I am going to start making different decisions’. What do I have to lose? If I decide I don’t like it I can always go back to eating fried foods at least once a day. That’s fine. So I started changing what I ate and how I ate it. And within a week, and just doing the training that I would normally be doing - I do diff things from Pilates to weightlifting to anaerobic stuff to plyometrics – all the different stuff I have done over the years. I love it.
But you ate poorly.
I ate like shit! And the result of that was that I was maintaining a body that was…fine. And a feeling in my body that was…fine. It was all good and when people looked at it they would go ‘wow – that’s great’. But really it’s talking about individual potential. And everybody has their own. If I am at 50% of my potential that might be someone else’s 100%. But I am still only at my 50%.a and someone else might look at themselves and realize that they are only at their 50%. How do they get to the 100%? The only way to do it is to change your habits and to change the way that you do what you’re doing currently. If you’re only at your 50% what you’re’ doing isn’t working.
For you were you at 50%?
I was probably at 75%.
What made your realize that there was something you were sweeping under the carpet?
I realized over the last year and a half or so, I started realizing ok – it takes a little bit longer in the gym to get back. If I leave the gym for a week. When I was 30, it would take me 3 days to get back to a place that I could feel the strength again. By the end of two weeks of being in the gym and working out I would be back up to where I felt like I was in a good place. But I started realizing that it was starting to take me a week to a week and a half to get to that good place. You can spend you day doing anything. An hour doing anything you want. I prefer to spend and hour in the morning or even 30 minutes in the morning dedicated to my physical health.
This is how I have always been. But what is new for me is making different choices in what I ate. Which I have never done. Combined with the fitness I have always done. And the result of that has been phenomenal. I don’t eat all the crap that I normally eat. And I am eating very clean. I am not eating anything…I am eating the proper carbs…like whole grains and brown ice and oatmeal and sweet potatoes really good…actually the best carb…and quinoa…that kind of stuff. Nothing white – no pasta. Every once in a while. I don’t believe in depriving yourself. I just believe on being focused and disciplined at a very high percentage. Not just 60-40 but 95-5 of the majority. I am eating more frequently – I eat every three hours and I eat a protein, the right carb and greens, and that's what I am eating. I am not inviting in…I am doing it grilled or roasted not fried. I am not eating…I cut out dairy completely a year ago. I am doing low sodium, if none at all, I stopped salting my food which honestly I thought I was going to die…but you realize oh wait the reasons I needed salt all the time was because I ate salt all the time. Like anything there is transition period. Now I don’t even think about salting food nay more.
What’s been the impact of all this?
The impact has been gigantic. I get a better result with my workout. I started lifting heavier weights, which I would never have done in the past.
So beyond the physical, you feel more present in your body?
When you make decisions like…it gives you the ability to be present in that moment and more thoughtful about your future. Discipline creates focus and that transfers into every aspect of your life.
Which is interesting, because your approach is to be open, but what’s brought you to a healthier place has been to not be so open with certain things.
Actually the cool thing is, because I have narrowed the scope of what I am eating, it has enabled me to expand it. If I am cooking for myself if I am not going to fry it, how else can I make it taste good. You come up with different ideas from fry it or salt it, put some potatoes on it and a bit of butter of it.
Do you feel more sexual?
I fell more alive in every way. The confidence that it gives you…if you look at it…I've talked to a lot of people about this thing…would you agree that most people, 80% of most peoples' dissatisfaction with their lives is about how they look and feel? Probably people don’t realize how they feel…they associate it with how they look…but the reason they look that way is because you don’t know how you feel inside. If you were connected to how you feel inside hen you would realize that you would be making different choices to make you feel different inside which would automatically change the way that you look.
You believe that people can act themselves into a more beautiful self?
It’s transformation. Very powerful…how do you want to look? How do you want to feel? I feeling my body really really strongly. The energy that comes out of me comes from not the way that I look to other people but how I feel. How it feels to be strong in my body. How it feels to not eat something that makes me bogged down. To be able to be light on my feet and know that I am ready to take on whatever I need to take on. That the challenges that I have put up for myself have made me stronger and more capable in making more decisions for myself whether its my career, my relationship, my friends, my family – whatever it is. Dealing with anything that makes me stronger – we all have our time and we’re all human and we all have our ups and our downs, but it helps you navigate and be more resilient to the downward moment
So what exactly do you want most at this point in your life? Right now.
I think its like…I’m where I want to be. I am exactly where I want to be. Making the choice to be more thoughtful about this. Be more thoughtful about the choices that I make throughout the day. It has just given me the ability to…when I have a challenge within a friendship, or even the littlest things. It has made me more disciplined to return emails. Because I am more focused. It has totally rippled out. Ok I must call my sister. I shouldn’t let that thing go and I should not let that pass me by. I have more energy. It’s not that hard for me to say yes to a lot of things that I may have said no to because I was beat. Now I think differently. And also just the benefit of taking on a challenge and like sticking with it and staying with the discipline gives you confidence to do so much more. The first two weeks I thought I was going to die without fried foods. I was doing interviews for Green Hornet and they were like ‘what superhero power would you have’…and I was like “eat fried foods!” I was obsessed with it. I pushed through it. I got past it
I am very happy for you.
And then it’s not on my brain like that any more. Sometimes I'm like, I look at it and I’m like ‘I could eat all of that’. And I'm like ‘go ahead do it. Go ahead Cameron. What’s going to happen?’ And I’m like…’I don’t really want it.’ Because I think about how it will make me feel and how I want to live my life now and how I want to be and I don’t think that it’s worth it to me to take myself back. Once in a while I’m like you know what I am going to go out and have fried chicken at the château. And I’m going to kill it. I’m going to eat all of it. I’m going to eat it down to the gristle. And I’ll go do that.
So how does this feed in to the whole where you’re at right now? You’re at a place where you’re healthy in your body, evolved in your mind, growing and learning and having found yourself.
There’s no destination. I’m not waiting to arrive anywhere. I’m still…you know…I’m in a constant forward motion. You know? That’s just you know…that’s just me. I don’t say that everybody has to be able to do it. But I think that I see the benefits of doing it. Of living that way. And it’s something that speaks to me and I would encourage it to anybody. If there’s anybody who wants to talk about it, I would be happy to. If anyone is interested, I am happy to have that conversation. I am not going around saying you have to do it.
Have you always been this disciplined?
I contribute a lot of that to my parents. The way they raised my sister and I. but they allowed us to have our own beliefs. They said...hey you’re capable.
I reading an interview that you did where you were saying that they always encouraged you to be your best rather than the best. You meet a lot of younger women wracked with fear about how they are going to be the best. Everyone’s only capable of being his or her own best.
If your aspiration…if you aspire to be your own best…doesn’t mean you are not going to end up being the best. The goal shouldn’t be to be the best.
What’s your goal?
My goal is to do the best that I can as it happens. To make the best decisions that I can given consciously given everything that I’ve gone through in my life, lessons that I have learned but try not to repeat the same mistakes, but I am human and it might happen but hopefully the repercussions of it aren’t as damaging in some way. To just really be conscious of where I am at and what I am doing. I don’t think that…I think happiness, there are many arms and legs, there are many moving components to being happy.
If you had to choose between love and career, which would you choose?
Life is not linear process, it expands and it contracts. It ebbs and flows. So I'm happy to go with the flow. It’s not about either or necessarily. But as you go, like recently…I usually cook a lot more, and I haven’t been cooking very much lately, so the way that I manifest the need for that for me was that cooking was a creative outlet…so I started drawing more. I’ll just doodle now. I used to draw more. I have created an other outlet. I still need that outlet. And when I started relaxing there was something missing. I was like wow this feels kind of the same as when I am cooking. That satisfies that. I cook for the people I love. I like to give it to people. It’s not the same thing. And the nurturing comes out in other ways. That’s the ebb and flow. Ok I am not in the kitchen so how can I satisfy these things.? I don’t think that you ever have to give up anything. I think that you just have to change again…I am not going to give up the pleasure of eating just because I feel a certain way I am just going to figure out how to do it differently
So, I know you are on the downlow in interviews about your relationship…
I’ll see what I can answer for you.
What’s it like having been on the downlow and then there was a really cute moment where you were feeding each other popcorn during the Superbowl. What’s it like to come out, when one of the things associated with that is bringing relationship into the public eye. It brings a whole other range of issues. Did that moment mean anything to you guys?
It was really sweet…we laughed. We were like ‘oh my god can you believe it?’ Especially since it was the only time…he finished his popcorn and he went to eat my popcorn and I was like whoa! It’s my popcorn, because we love popcorn. I said ok you can have this piece and that was the only time I had fed him. There were two pieces of popcorn left and I said you can have this piece and the camera happened to catch us right that moment and we were like ‘of course’. The one time I do that. We thought it was sweet. It was really cute. And it does show a dynamic of our relationship which is we know going to a place which is the most watched event in television history…you can’t really live your life worrying about those things. There’s only so much that you can keep to yourself without being able to…we cant be mad at that. Here we are trying to sort of keep it on the down low for so long and now its sort of like we’re just living our lives. You want to go out and be in the world with the person you are with. There are certain things you don’t want to give up completely and that moment wasn’t necessarily one…but we didn’t care. It didn’t bother us that that happened at all. We laughed at it. We were like ‘oh my god we are going to get in so much shit for that’. He is. But its not disingenuous of whom we are. What really hurts is when people portray things in a way that isn’t nice or not real. When they say things that are hurtful. That’s when you get upset about people getting into your business. But that was who we are. Then someone said afterwards that Alex was upset about it and we were like what? That’s when you go ‘come on guys. Why would you say that?’ And then that became negative about it and we were having fun with it. We were having fun with the whole thing because it was funny. And all of a sudden people have to put a negative slant on it where we are like that’s just not cool. It’s not important for us to go out and change people’s opinion of it. Its just who…we were just being who we are.
What’s the dynamic like between you two, if you were to describe it?
Well. I’m happy to talk about the other part of it...but the dynamic is where I keep it a little closer. But to answer your question about what’s it like being in relationships in public. You hope that people respect it. Of course you know that people are going to have their opinions about it.
What a bummer to have to deal with that.
We just kind of ignore it. Because it’s like any relationship. With anybody. If people take it back to themselves, I am sure there is plenty of girls in relationships who either love their boyfriend or hate their boyfriend. Or they’re a mixed bag. The verdict’s out. Or there are people in a relationship and it’s celebrated but their relationship isn't really doing that well. And there are relationships where people are like how does that fucking work? I don’t get it? But it’s between the two people. You cant judge. And I have learned it. Being at this age. You cannot look at every other relationship in the past might have looked and gone what is wrong with those people. You cannot judge the love between two people. You cant make someone feel differently about someone than the way they feel about them. That’s their journey. A thousand percent. Everybody is in your life for a purpose. For me. I think why marriage hasn’t been really important to me because I believe we’re where we supposed to be, with whom we’re supposed to be when we’re supposed to be with them. If I try to lock something down and say this is what it is, I’m missing out on all the possibilities of what it could be. And it doesn't mean that I am looking for someone, some thing else to move on to. It means…why am I going to say this is what this is when it could be so much more. Why do I have to put a limit on it?
So you’re cool with where it’s at in that moment.
It doesnt mean you cant be committed to one another or to the future but you’re not there yet. You’ve got to get there. And you’re never getting there because it keeps moving. The future is not. It doesn’t exist. You only are where you’re. You keep making the choices that you make to get you to the next place. Those only exist as you’re there. This is what I believe and that’s what I encourage for people. Whatever it is for you…you have to be honest. I mean…the only way about getting around feeling insecure is to address it and feel honest about it and say I am insecure about this because it makes me feel like this ad then he goes you don’t have to feel that way. That the. I think people get so bogged down. The pictures I did yesterday are all about my body…clothing is Cosmo. I don’t have a problem with that. I have worked to have what I have. I feel good about what I have, I am not hiding…but I am not going to pretend that it is easy. Nothing is. Nothing is easy. That is life. Life is you exits being human is to be challenged in every way shape or form and if you are not taking on the challenge and not learning to take on the challenge in a healthy way or to keep moving through those challenges then your experience here is going to be a very unhappy one. But if you learn to take on those challenges and embrace them and take strength out oft hem and power yourself through them then the payoff to that is unbelievable. In any aspect of your life. I am not just talking about the physical aspect. Doing what I have been doing for the last 10/11 years, taking care of my body in the way I have and then stepping it into this new phase of adding consciousness of what I am eating and changing my patterns, it has been a consistent challenge the whole way through but I am not allowing myself…every once in a while I will get down on one knee and have to take a breath. But then I am like you know what this…the benefit of this is does good. It makes my life so much better in everyway ay. Some people it might be meditation is the thing that catapults their success in all different directions. Some people it might be their children. Whatever it is you have to find that for yourselves. I personally think the majority of people…the fact that the media and you turn on the TV after 1am and it's a pill or a piece of equipment or a program or a DVD or a book that’s a quick fix to something that everybody for the majority of people have a dissatisfaction with, which is the way they feel inside and the way that they look. And if people became more conscious of how to…if they really applied themselves to that and made the changes in their lives. Even if you don’t go 100% on something, it moves a needle of you make an effort. No matter what the percentage is, if its 75%. You’re going to make a difference and that keeps you motivated to doing more and more.
Do you have a mantra? When you’re struggling in the mornings perhaps?
Its funny…it’s just do it! It’s the best slogan ever! They are so smart. It is a mindset for people. When you re focused on something. Whatever it is. Whether its your meditation or your spiritual practice or whatever it is that gets you motivated and moves you forward and pushes you, you just have to do it. It’s called discipline and discipline is necessity in everyone’s life of some sort.
Tell me more about discipline and how you learned it.
My parents put a lot of responsibility on my sister and I from a young age. They allowed us to like…I got up in the morning and made my own breakfast starting at five years old I could cook an omelet I did my own laundry. We had chores around the house...we had a work ethic and we were held to it. And I think that that is a discipline. My parents gave us the discipline of taking care of what we had to take care of. There were rules and responsibilities and we had to take care of those things and when you realize that how much you can expand that. That’s just running a household or getting yourself out of the house and balancing a checkbook. That’s the basics of it all…The 100% is all the other aspects of life that you want to be accomplished in or that you want to participate in at the very least if I wanted to like…if my thing on the weekend was to go thrift shopping I have got to get up at the weekends to go do it. If getting there at 6am mean getting the things I really wanted rather than getting there at 9am and getting the scraps I would probably be more motivated at 5am when the alarm to just go do it. It’s like setting the alarm at 5am and saying I am going to get an hour’s workout because I want to feel better about myself. I just got to do it. I gotta do it. Because that’s what it takes.
Have you thought about writing a self-help book?
Haha. When you put that into your head and you don’t let yourself talk yourself out of it. It goes back to what they think makes them happy...instead of really searching…..what do you have to lose. How are you going to spend that other hour? If you need more sleep go to bed earlier so hat you can get up and do that hour. You can have it all. Sometimes it’s at a little bit more of a cost but the goal is to have it all and come out with equity at the end. And what are the things that you want. How do you make that balance? If you have to chalk it up. Its like I am going to have fun eating food. But I am going to change the way I eat and the choices I make on it because its worth it to me at the end to have the results that I have gotten from it. Dong the same thing over and over and over and over again is really bad for you. If you inject rat with water over and over…they get cancer. Because anything too much of anything over and over and over again is not good for you.
Do you feel that your friends come to you for advice? You seem very grounded and you have a really good sense of what it means to be healthy in all respects.
I am lucky that a lot of my friends have helped me and we help each other. We all sort of arrive to these ideas and beliefs through each other's experiences and being like. That's the great thing about relationships and friendships. Sometimes you don’t have to take on the challenge yourself to understand the repercussions or the payoff too.
How do you talk about difficult subjects with your friends…when one of your friends isn’t making good decisions for themselves or going through a negative pattern?
Drew and I have that with each other all the time. We’re like sisters she’s like ‘oh god here it comes again.’ And I’m like not it doesn’t and she’ll be like later on…preaching to me on something and I’m like rally…you’re going to say that again…or we’ll be like ‘ok I hear you I totally get it thank you so much for addressing that. What else, can you just lay it out for me because I want to know? You know ok I respect that and I appreciate and I am going to pay attention to it. And then use it and I appreciate you coming to me as my friend and bringing that to my attention because I respect you and it matters to me what you think and I know this is coming from a place of love and I am happy to receive it. It hurts a little bit but god it would be so much worse if it cost me anything with you.’
You make it sound so easy!
It’s all in how you say it too. Rather than telling someone ‘hey guess what you do you’, you can say ‘hey do you ever realize that when you do this, this happens. Is that something you’re aware of?’ Oh…and then you’re not like hey guess what you do. You do that. And that happens. It’s like that puts people on the defense right way but if you give them the opportunity to discover it for themselves. They can work it out for themselves.
I’ve got a couple more questions. What do you think of social networking?
I don’t get social networking. I mean I get it, I understand it. But it freaks me out. It freaks me out. Like I guess its just because of the position I am in… this need to make your life into content to be uploaded for everybody to see. Its like why would you want anybody to know? I also think that …I don’t think its perfect. The whole system. And I hear all these weird stories bout people getting hacked in their space and pictures being taken off and it really freaks me out because I’m like ‘well if there’s part of it that's supposed to be private we’re not really sure whether or not that’s even really possible. If we are putting up all this stuff that you think is private and then it is being accessed by other people, that is such a violation that I wouldn’t want to take the personal chance of doing that’. We don’t really know the repercussions of it yet. Also its like a distraction. And that keep you from doing other things…like taking care of yourself. And moving through the world in a way that you’re …I have believe that work ethic is like a major thing for me. I have a very strong work ethic. And I believe that people…that we should all work really hard. And you should have a good time while you are doing it. Work should be fun. And I find in the younger generation…like 32 and younger…there’s just a difference, there’s not the same work ethic as 33 and up.
I wonder why that is?
I think that it’s all about decades. Every decade has a different you know and generations. Its generational and I think that kids are that are in their twenties think that… Its a statement of society…there was the mentality and its happened over the centuries in America with every generation where parents have to work real really hard throughout depression and the 40s and the 50s it was lets reap the benefits and there was a sense of working hard but starting to have this sense of accomplishment and giving your children things you could never have as a child and that theme carried on all the way up to where you couldn’t give kids what they need. You didn’t have to work for it because you could charge it. My parents used to put things on layaway. If you put the things you want aside and you went and paid for them as you could afford them. You went in and said ‘now I want this pair of pants for this much money’ and you didn’t go in and say I’ll take all this stuff and I’ll pay you later. And I think we live in society now where it is instant gratification. We can have whatever we want right now without having to actually pay for it, which ultimately you have to work to be able to afford it. It’s like getting from a to b with out doing the work. You have to pay for it. Somewhere.
What are your thoughts on monogamy? Is it something society has created or is it a natural state for humans to be in?
1000% society. I think monogamy has been created to provide you know. We all know where it comes from. It comes from religion. And it comes from societal constraints. And you know I don’t think that it is natural. I absolutely don’t think it is natural. Its probably one of the biggest challenges of our society is to try and figure out how to come to terms with that.
How to navigate something that maybe goes against biology?
Its like you’re saying with diet. If you choose that you want to be monogamous you are going against personality or biology then you are creating this other new narrower world that could be awesome or could be a nightmare.
I think it’s all about the individuals and it’s all about people being honest. And its about people being able to communicate and I think that its going to be one of those things that will be a major challenge and people are trying to start to learn how to navigate it in a more realistic way. And I think that it is going to be a major part of the reconstruction of our society, taking that into consideration. Or it should be. I think people would be a lot happier if they figured it out.
You once said a woman should never be alone without her dildo.
I’m sorry, who said that? I said the two things that women should absolutely have is a dildo and a triple A card because you should never be stranded by the roadside without help.
I went through my phases with them. With feeling almost guilty. Like, ‘I’m so self-sufficient right now! I kind of don’t need anything else’. I got rid of anything that had a motor because really, how is a guy going to compete.
I think that that’s you guys, you and your boyfriend. You guys can work that out. Yeah I now its definitely one of those things that has become…have you seen. Like on television there’s this show like pay per view called shop erotica and they are like this is…I LOVE that. Its is a normal act. It is an absolutely normal act. You might as well optimize it. People are afraid to like you know…you don’t have to talk about it, it doesn’t have to be the topic of conversation...you don’t have to share it with everybody but it s natural thing and girls shouldn’t be ashamed of it. Men shouldn’t be afraid of it.
Some guys are intimidated by it and then they get into it.
Optimize whatever the boundaries are...maybe one day you’ll learn how to introduce it to him in a way that doesn’t feel threatening to him, that might be the challenge. For me I see it as a challenge for myself to see how creative can I actually get. It’s a good challenge in figuring out how to make it something that is breaking up your norm. The thing that maybe wasn’t doing it the same way all the time doesn’t allow you toe expand and grow and now you get to have the opportunity to expand and grow because of the he limitations that he has.
What do you think of the word “lover”?
I love the word lover. Absolutely. I love the word lover I think its a beautiful word. I think it encompasses everything that a relationship should have. Because I think it implies a connection a partnership, and as well as the…you know…kind of what that relationships is specifically that makes it different from all the other relationships that you have. A lover is somebody specific. Unless you have several lovers. But if you are calling one person your lover it’s a partnership and it’s a connection and its specific.
Partner – there’s something very logistical about that word.
I think its important part of relationships. Your lover is the partner in that aspect of your life but also you can expand that and because you have that connection it makes you stronger to the rest of life and its challenges and what you can take on together.
Do you ever want to be a wife?
I don’t know. I think that when you are in a committed relationship with somebody there’s no difference. You’re practically married. In that way. You’re married for that time that you are living life together. When you marry your lives together and integrate you lives together. Not all relationships but when you are in some relationships it is like a marriage. But I don’t need a title or a label. I am happy being somebody’s lover. To me it’s the same. It’s got the same gravity.
You were talking about integration. Do you find or have you found in the past that there is a struggle to maintain sense of self in a relationship? When you integrate with someone in committed relationship or as a lover, there is sometimes, you lose a part of yourself.
I think it’s universal. I think it’s important to keep trying to find the balance in it. If you go too far in one direction I don’t think it is healthy. And ultimately for women. Everybody find something different attractive. There might be a guy who wants a girl who solely wants to take care of him and doesn’t want anything else going on in his life and only a couple things that don’t take him too far from his needs. But I think generally men want women who have things going on in their own lives. Certainly thats the kind of man I would want. Somebody who is supportive and wants that for me as well rather than somebody. The things that I have going on in my life aren’t a threat to them.
I know you don’t necessarily look ahead very far, you try to be in the moment, but presumably you have a sense of future. Like, when you’re 60, where do you want to be with your career?
No. I never think about that. I have no idea. I am limiting myself if I do honestly. I am limiting myself if I do. I just…the things that I have found in my life that when I am the happiest and where I am reaping the biggest benefits and I am like looking at something and I am like wow. Wow. Really? This is amazing. I had no idea it could be like this. I had no idea. Even if I thought…if I gave you the best picture. If I looked at that paper and I looked at where I am at right now I think I just limited myself. This is so much better. Where I’m at. Actuality is so much bigger and better and brighter and funner and more exciting and more fulfilling than I would ever have been able …than what I wrote down here. I don’t know. How here in this moment do I know what I am capable of in two years, or ten years, or two months? Two months ago I didn’t think I would not be coming here for Sunday fried chicken. You know what I mean.
Is that why they said ‘we haven’t seen you for a while?’
I lived here for a while. I also lived up around the corner. I used to come here every Sunday. The fried chicken was on Sundays…Fried Chicken Sundays was so good.
Try not to think about it!
But two months ago if I had said what is my optimum on Sunday, I would be eating fried chicken and I would have thought that would have really made me happy but if I was eating fried chicken on Sunday it would have meant I wouldn’t have just had the journey I have had over the last two months that ahs completely enriched my life. Why am I going to say that’s where I am going to be when I get there I know its going to be so much better than I ever thought it could be. Because that’s my journey. I am dedicating myself to allowing that to happen. And when I get to those moments where I am down and I need to lie down for a second because it hurts so bad I know that when is stand back up and I start walking. That journey from there on there is only going to be better because of that moment. I have to have that moment to get to a better place and that is going to happen many times over in my lifetime if I am lucky and as I take that journey I am happy to end up wherever I am in that moment. So and to me its like…if I start thinking about where I want to be in the future, I would freak the fuck out. I would start getting scared. But what if that doesn’t happen. Guess what. It might not. Something better might happen. So why should I worry about it.
That’s a good point.
Our brains go straight to – its not going to happen so something terrible is going to happen. I have never thought one day about what my career was going to be. If I was going to be successful or not. If I was going to make a million, even a million dollars. I never thought for one day wondered if people were going to see my movies. What I do is I go…I’m so blessed to be having this experience I am going to work as hard as I can, whatever the outcome is, its no business of mine. My business is taking care of this moment right here, and he I take care of this moment right here. The future is being taken care of right now. Because I ma dedicated to this moment. I've never worried about where I am going to end up and I’ve never had the picture of…I want to be on the cover of Cosmo, I want to be in a movie that makes 200million worldwide. Why would I ever limit myself to that? There’s so much more out there. And all of those things if I am lucky enough to get any of them, it’s a blessing and I if I am not grateful for it then I am an asshole and if I am appreciative of it then I am in need of nothing and that is exactly how I have gotten to be where I am right now. There’s no other pat of it. The places that I have had expectation or worries – guess what. So unhappy. So unhappy. Aspects of my life where ..And that’s been the journey for me. Is learning that. Identifying that in these parts of my life that are working really really well, I had no expectation. And I allowed them to be what they were going to be. And the things that I worried about what they were going to be, I have never been satisfied with. And so my discipline has become not to worry about the outcome of those things in those parts of my life and just be present and just for the best thing possible to ensure that wherever it keeps moving towards is someplace that is only going to be better and brighter and bigger than I could have ever imagined it to be.
Wow…you’re a very positive person to be around.
Thank you. There’s a reason everything happens. It all works out. It always always does. Then it’s about figuring out how to make yourself feel happy. And it’s not about what’s going to make you feel happy ten years from now, it’s about what’s going to make you happy now. What aspect of yourself do you need to address?
That’s so hard to figure out.
If you’re quiet for a second and you just listen to yourself and you’re honest yourself. You’ll be like…oh I feel fat. Ok so how do I address that? Or oh…I really want a dildo. You’re going to have to address that some day. Its not going to be easy…but that cliché …nothing good comes easy…it doesn’t mean that it ahs to be miserable it just means that you have to work at it and you can have a great time doing it and you can have fun doing it. You can take on a challenge with the attitude that the challenge s going to kill you or make you better. Making you better is a better way to go.
I think women in America need to connect with that part of themselves. People are scared of saying the wrong thing, being the wrong thing…
It’s just stupid. It’s a lack of appreciation for what we have, too. There is no…we can always be more grateful. We should never be less grateful. You should always be saying I could be more grateful. Gratitude and being grateful is the key to so much happiness. If you are grateful for what you have you really in need of nothing because we are the luckiest of the lucky. The luckiest of the lucky and you should never lose sight of that
So gratitude is almost a technology for happiness?
Absolutely. 1000%. I could be really upset about the things…like how do you live with the paparazzi. No, I am grateful for the paparazzi; do I want to have them do what they do? No, not really? Do I want them rushing up on me and scaring the shit of me in the middle of the night when I am walking in a dark parking lot. No. Their actions I am not grateful for, but what it means is that what I do for a living, the thing that I love doing, the thing that I am grateful being able to do that they are allowing me to do it by going to the movie theatre to see and support me a me in doing what I love doing and part of that comes from wanting to know what goes on in my life which gives these guys, their behavior is connected to that. I don’t want them to be that way but I understand why there are there and I have to be grateful for that. It helps me to be calm. Its like be respectful and back off, if you are going to do it do it over there, don’t come in here, I appreciate that’s what you have to do and I am grateful for the reasons why it is being done but please have respect. Its ok. I can live with that. And it helps me go…OK. I can do this. I can move through it. I am fine I am calm and cool and collected.
And if they don’t listen, then you karate chop them?
Thanks so much, it’s been such a pleasure talking to you.
You’ve been very easy to talk to. Thank you.