While I was creating my new course, Happily Ever After: A (Self) Love Story (juicy details on that HERE), I decided that I needed to find out what makes some of the women whom I admire feel their most abundant, walk the world their radiant best. And because we're all in a community of supportive sisters, it seemed only right that I share their inspiring, hilarious, and often resonant responses with you. Every few weeks, I will introduce you to someone whose work and spirit have been life-changing for me, and hopefully you'll find yourself touched and motivated, too.
I'm pretty sure that Christy Turlington Burns needs absolutely no introduction, but in case you have been living on a desert island, here are just a few buzz words to sum up this phenomenal woman: Supermodel, Mom, Health Advocate, Writer, Yogi, Producer, Director, Clothing Designer, and the Founder of mega-organization, Every Mother Counts. Although I have always been in awe of her beauty (how can you not?), the inspiration that I get from her mighty advocacy and philanthropic work on behalf of women, health, and this planet is overflowing and never-ending.
JW: You launched Every Mother Counts and have since done so much extraordinary humanitarian work ensuring that women and their children are healthy, safe, and well-informed. What's the standout moment to you in your work with EMC?
CTB: Interacting with mothers around the world and working with others committed to empowering girls and women every day is pretty exciting, as is earning the right to sit at the table amongst so many organizations who have been working on these issues for decades. I am proud of the presence we now have in the global maternal health community and of each action we have inspired by inviting more people to join this conversation.
JW: How did yoga change your life? And to extrapolate that, how did general mindfulness alter your life? Do you feel the things you learn through those practices help you to be a better mother, friend, partner, entrepreneur, humanitarian, etc?
CTB: Yoga is an integral part of my daily routine and it has given me so much more than I could ever have imagined. Not only is it an excellent form of exercise, it has given me perspective in so many other aspects of my life. I feel a great sense of connection and community with others because of this practice.
JW: For someone who has accomplished so much, what is the thing you are most proud of?
CTB: I’m really proud of the way we’re beginning to see a groundswell of interest and concern about the welfare of women and mothers in the world. When I had my childbirth complication ten years ago, there was very little attention being paid to the problem of maternal mortality and poor maternal health conditions. Now, we’re seeing and hearing more about it. I’m also really proud of the grants Every Mother Counts has been able to fund. Because of the generosity of our supporters, we’ve been able to fund projects that are making a significant and direct impact on women's lives in countries like Haiti, Uganda, Malawi, Indonesia, and the United States.
JW: …And my shallow, need-to-know question: How do you keep your skin looking so amazing? Please share your secrets!
CTB: Thank you. But I really have my mother to thank for her genetics. My secrets aren’t really secrets. Sleep, water, and exercise! I also believe we are what we eat and think what goes into my body as as important, if not moreso for my health and wellbeing.