In the early 1980s, Oprah Winfrey was a 28-year-old talk show host in Baltimore. She read a book called The Color Purple and it completely changed her life. She had been abused as a child and had never told anyone. A character in the book had the same thing happen to her so Oprah finally felt like she wasn’t alone. She felt heard and validated. She went to the book store and bought every available copy of the book. She carried them around in a backpack and handed them out to friends, colleagues and strangers, urging them to read the story.
Years later she heard that The Color Purple was being made into a movie. She desperately wanted to be involved. By chance, she met a man named Quincy Jones who was a producer and he got her an audition. She was ecstatic. But then months and months passed and she thought she had missed her chance. She blamed her weight. She thought it had caused her to lose the part.
So she went to a health retreat to try and slim down. She was desperate. She went out on the track and started running. It was raining. And she started praying. She told God she had surrendered. She had done all she could and couldn’t do any more.
Then someone from the building started calling her name. They said there was someone on the phone for her. It was the movie’s director Steven Spielberg. He told her she got the part, he wanted to see her the next day and she didn’t need to lose a pound.
That opportunity changed everything. She was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe for her role. And after being pressured not to take time off from her talk show during filming, she decided to become her own boss.
It was when she surrendered that her dream came true. When she embraced the fact that she could do nothing more. She was prepared. She was ready. And life needed to unfold.
As Oprah once said, “Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.”
Do everything you can to follow your heart, and then breathe and let go. You are ready for the next chapter.