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Q&A with Mariel Hemingway

Posted by january olds on

Q&A with Mariel Hemingway

When you hear her name, you’ll be tempted to feel like you instantly know her. But where a lot of us had the luxury of existing as whoever it was we wanted to be, As a Hemingway, Mariel had to truly pave and create her own identity. The youngest of three and of course the granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway, Mariel’s life depicts one that is rich in creativity, endurance and meaningful history. From her early days as an actress, to today as an author, activist and entrepreneur, she continues to lead by example. When you hear her speak, you can hear a well of wisdom from her life experiences and a peace that only exudes beauty and brains we are so drawn to. There’s a light in her words and we are so excited to learn just a little bit more from this wonder of a woman.


January Olds: If you had to describe your childhood in a few words, what would you say?

Mariel Hemingway: My childhood was a combination of the beauty and nurture of nature and the chaos of a home of good intentioned dysfunctional people.

JO: What is the biggest difference when looking at your life today?

MH: I’m not living in the same universe any longer. I’m happy, free to speak up and create on my own. The similarity is that my connection to nature is still my grounding rod. I am in love with my life and my amazing life partner, Bobby Williams and it all just keeps getting better.

JO: From acting to writing to speaking and advocating mental health and beyond, what have you found to be a common emotion within yourself you embody when you’re operating in each of these platforms?

MH: I operate (or at least intend to) from a place of finding and perhaps better said sharing from my inner truth.

JO: “Running from Crazy” was based on your experience growing up around mental illness--what was your intended hope in sharing your story? What has been a surprising discovery?

MH: “Running from crazy” was a documentary I co-produced with Oprah about my family, their suicides and their struggles with addiction. I made it so others (all others) would realize how human beings are all connected and not alone.whether we are celebrities or not we all have the same emotions pains or stories. Even if the outcomes don’t look the same the inherent emotions are the same.  We all have struggles and we need to tell our stories in order to free ourselves from the burden of their impact. I write a more detailed book about it called “Out Came the Sun”.

My biggest discovery is finding out how many people share similar stories and often the same pain but how when one sees someone else healing it enables them to heal.


JO: How would you describe a mindful life?

MH: A mindful life is a life lived in the present. A life where you breathe before reaction or explosion where you are grateful and honoring of your journey every day.

JO: Tell us how the perfect day starts out for you and ends.

MH: My perfect day begins by watching the sunrise from our back porch, a quiet meditation then a liter of water and a bullet proof coffee or maybe water first coffee then I watch the sunrise in meditation. I end the day by writing about the day and take an inventory. Then prior to sleeping I imagine the following day filled with ease and joy as I drift off.

JO: Do you have any daily rituals?

MH: Part of my morning routine is that I put a mask on my face every morning. I watch sunrises and sunsets and I meditate daily.

JO: What have you learned most about yourself in the last year?

MH: I learned that I know what I’m good at and I don’t have to do things I’m not good at just to be approved of.

JO: What role has “beauty” played in your understanding to yourself? And
to the world?

MH: I feel beauty is an important part of our well being, our health and balance not beauty as vanity but beauty as an element. Beauty begins and ends in nature when we connect to that we find our true beauty.

JO: What makes you feel beautiful?

MH: I feel beautiful when I honor my routines when I connect in the outdoors and when I laugh.

JO: What are a few of your favorite products that you can't live without?

MH: Masks are imperative both moisture and activating masks from natural sources. Serums too are important for skin health. Add a little face yoga everyday and life is good.

JO: Nutrition, meditation, and mindfulness are core passions and values of
yours. What ignited them? Does one come easier than the others? Vice

MH: Mindfulness, meditation and nutrition are all equal in importance and help create balance and frankly they all work together to create the greatest well being.

JO: You have two daughters--what would you say has been the best advice
they’ve given you?

MH: My daughters are confident and they are straight shooters they help me to not apologize for who I am. They’re far more courageous than I was at their age and they are catalysts for my own courage to walk in my power.

JO: I LOVE that! 

JO: What felt once impossible to you and now feels possible?

MH: Creating a legacy of awareness on how to live life. I feel like I’m on the precipice of creating avenues to share more of what I have learned in my years and what I am continuing to learn. Becoming is the word of late that inspires me to self honesty and opening others up to their own becoming.

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