OPRAH WIN­FREY IN 24 HOURS

Harper's Bazaar (Singapore) - - CONTENTS -

The phi­lan­thropist lets us in on a typ­i­cal day in her fab­u­lous life

7:10A.M. Ev­ery day that I can wake up sur­rounded by na­ture in my home

[in Mon­tecito, Cal­i­for­nia] is a per­fect one. I call it the “Promised Land” be­cause it feels like a spir­i­tual gift from all the forces of life. This morn­ing, when I hit the black­out shades just after seven, the light was cast­ing its golden glow over the green lawn, with the clouds and ocean in the dis­tance. I hadn’t even had a sip of cof­fee, but it was al­ready a per­fect day. 8:00A.M.

First thing in the morn­ing, I brush my teeth and take the dogs out. There are five of them and every­body’s ready to get out, but I make them wait while I brush my teeth. After I walk the dogs around the yard, I make my fa­vorite espresso. I mix caf­feinated and de­caf­feinated espresso with milk and a lit­tle hazel­nut.As I wait for the brew to froth, I pull out a card from my 365 Gath­ered Truths box. I read five of them each morn­ing; it’s a beau­ti­ful way to start the day. 8:30A.M. I have a se­ries of spir­i­tual ex­er­cises that I do ev­ery day. After read­ing Gath­ered Truths, I check out “Bowl of Saki” on my phone; it’s de­liv­ered to my in­box ev­ery morn­ing. It con­tains the teach­ings of the Su­fis, a Mid­dle Eastern sect that be­lieves all paths lead to God and that all re­li­gions are one, point­ing to the same north star. Then I med­i­tate. My house is sur­rounded by more than 3,000 trees; it feels like I live in a park. When I want to med­i­tate, I can go to a spe­cial rock that’s carved into the shape of a seat.

Or I can sit un­derneath the 12 live oak trees that I call “the Apos­tles.” It’s my favourite place on earth. 9:00A.M. After my med­i­ta­tion, I work out for an hour. I do re­sis­tance flex­i­bil­ity, a low-im­pact strength-train­ing pro­gramme that in­volves two, some­times three, peo­ple push­ing against you as you push against them. I have stretch­ers come to my house to help me do it. After that I go for a run. I live on 65 acres, so I can jog for a solid two miles without leav­ing my prop­erty. 10:30A.M. Today I had a lit­tle trunk show in my liv­ing room. Brunello Cucinelli came up from Los An­ge­les, and I chose ev­ery­thing that I wanted from their spring line. If it were Thurs­day, I’d be in the gar­den after my work­out.That’s har­vest day, when we cut the herbs, pick the fruit, dig up the pota­toes. It usu­ally takes 40 min­utes to an hour. 12:30P.M. We [Win­frey and her long­time part­ner, Stedman Gra­ham] al­ways try to eat lunch in the gar­den.We have a rule: If we can­not find it in our gar­den, then we can­not eat it. I love lunch. It’s my favourite meal. If Stedman isn’t here, I will in­vite oth­ers over— all the peo­ple I’m in­ter­ested in talk­ing to or meet­ing. I had Jen­nifer Lawrence up for lunch, Chrissy Metz, Princess Ameerah of Saudi Ara­bia. I do cook, but not if it’s more than four peo­ple. I start to get confused about how much stuff to put in. Some­times

I’ll have a glass of rosé with lunch. My favourite is Prom­ise “The Joy” rosé. It’s from Na­paVal­ley. I like my wine very chilled.Wine—if it’s too warm—is the only thing I ever send back at a res­tau­rant. 1:30P.M. I try to take care of any busi­ness in the early af­ter­noon so the rest of the day is mine. Wire trans­fers, cheques. I per­son­ally sign all cheques over

100 grand. Hav­ing grown up poor, I can

never com­pletely turn over all my money mat­ters to any­one else. It’s im­por­tant for me to know how much the elec­tric­ity bill is, to know what’s com­ing in, what’s go­ing out. I never want to be one of those peo­ple who del­e­gates that task to some­one else and then one day is sur­prised to find out how much money they do or don’t have. Dur­ing the week, I also check in daily with Gayle about the mag­a­zine

[King is Edi­tor-at-Large of O mag­a­zine], with my of­fice in

L.A., and with Mindy Gross­man [the pres­i­dent and CEO of Weight Watch­ers]. I go down the line of all the busi­ness stuff I need to take care of and usu­ally get it done com­pletely within two hours. 3:30P.M. In the late af­ter­noon, I’ll do some form of ex­er­cise again. Then I head to my tea­house just as the sun is set­ting. I never drink tea with caffeine in the af­ter­noon; oth­er­wise I’ll be up un­til four in the morn­ing be­cause it stays in my sys­tem for 12 hours.The tea­house is where I read.You know what I’ve been do­ing lately that brings me such ex­quis­ite joy? Read­ing po­etry. I re­cently saw Bruce Spring­steen on Broad­way, and it touched my life in such a pro­found way. I have not been able to talk about it without cry­ing. It is so deeply mov­ing—it makes you see the po­etry in your own life. The show in­spired me to start read­ing po­etry again, and so now that’s how I like to end my day. I’m cur­rently mak­ing my through The Way Un­der the Way, by my friend Mark Nepo. I find it very calm­ing. 6:00P.M. We eat din­ner at six, and then it’s time for an­other dog walk. My per­fect evening in­volves sit­ting around the fire with fam­ily, read­ing a novel, and drink­ing herbal tea. I gen­er­ally pre­fer read­ing a novel to watch­ing a movie. I can go for weeks without turn­ing on the TV; which is not to say I don’t love a good movie. A lot of my girls [for­mer stu­dents of her Lead­er­ship Academy for Girls in South Africa] are from out of the coun­try, so they’re not fa­mil­iar with many of the clas­sics. I want to make sure they see cer­tain films be­cause there are ex­pres­sions they need to know. We’ll watch One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and they’ll ask,“What does ‘cuckoo’s nest’ mean?” So we’ve been watch­ing a lot of old movies likeTo Kill a Mockingbird. Every­one needs to see that! 9:30P.M. In the evening, I have a bath be­fore bed; it’s a rit­ual. I’m a bathing pro­fes­sional—I have dif­fer­ent bub­ble baths, salts, beads and oils. I’ve spent a lot of time cre­at­ing homes that feel like nur­tur­ing, spir­i­tual shel­ters for me. I also have a ranch in Maui, but I don’t love any place as much as this one. The land, the trees and the open sky for­tify me. I feel very con­nected in a way that I never do when I’m in a city sur­rounded by build­ings. I re­cently trav­elled to Mil­wau­kee, where I grew up, and I kept say­ing to my­self, “Was it al­ways this grey?”Well, I never no­ticed be­cause I was al­ways go­ing to work. I left be­fore day­break and then it was dark when I got home

14 hours later. I never paid at­ten­tion to the sky. For me now, a per­fect day is not just one thing; it’s a se­ries of small things. It’s the crisp air on your face when you open the door in the morn­ing, the re­flec­tion of moun­tains and clouds in a crys­tal lake. It’s pay­ing at­ten­tion: What does the sky look like?

Where’s the sun? When you’re walk­ing down a path, how do your feet feel when they touch the grass? I know what peo­ple will say,“Well, Oprah, if I were you, I’d have a per­fect day too.” But I’ve earned it: I’ve earned the abil­ity to pay at­ten­tion to ev­ery as­pect and de­tail of the day. I have a great ap­pre­ci­a­tion for the lit­tle things that add up to that big thing called a mean­ing­ful life. ■

“The land, the trees and the open sky for­tify me. I feel very con­nected in a way that I never do when I’m in a city sur­rounded by build­ings.”

Oprah Win­frey at the 2018 Golden Globes

An il­lus­tra­tion by Pablo Lo­bato

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