Earlier this month, I took my BFF and joined 14,998 friends and spent the day with Oprah for her Oprah 2020 Vision: Your Life in Focus tour.  The two tickets were a birthday gift for a BIG BD, I recently celebrated. I felt like I had just won two “golden” tickets to tour Willy Wonka’s magical Chocolate Factory – but it was even better. I’d be spending the day with Oprah… and her special guest for the Brooklyn, NY show, Michelle Obama!

“Let’s make 2020 the year of transformation and triumph. Beginning first and foremost with what makes us well.” – Oprah

It was a magical day, filled with laughter, tears, dancing, reflection, and dreaming.  Oprah was authentically Oprah… and made me feel like I was sitting right there on the couch with her (like her Harpo studio days). She orchestrated one of the best personal development days I’ve ever attended, but then again, she’s Oprah.

While I had many “Aha moments,” there were definitely some great lessons to be shared and cultivated with others. Here are some of my highlights, as well as some takeaways from friends and colleagues who also attended:

  • State-of-Wellness (i.e., Wellness Focus): While we might think about our weight, our blood pressure, or our cholesterol numbers to define how “well” we are, Oprah took us to a whole new level. She introduced the concept of true wellness and defined it as – a healthy balance of mind, body, and spirit (aha!). We took a deep dive and calculated our wellness quotient, reflecting on questions relative to our MIND (Emotions, Learning, and Work), our BODY (Nutrition and Movement), and our SPIRIT (Purpose and Relationships). WOW… what areas in your life could you give more focus to? Wellness is not merely the number on the scale.
  • Where are you on your life’s journey? Knowing where you are on your journey is a gift (aha!) Reflecting on so many different life categories helped me think about possibilities, beyond the weight on the scale or the balance in my checkbook. And Oprah was all about the possibilities. Her optimism and enthusiasm were contagious, yet grounded!
  • Set Your Intentions, Not Goals (aha!): According to U.S. News & World Reports, 80% of all New Year’s Resolutions fail by February.  Oprah suggests instead of goals, we embrace intentions. “You don’t get what you want. You get what you intend.” (aha!) Your intentions (i.e. purpose) gives you the motivation to take the next right step. We don’t need to know all the answers. We just need to know what’s the next step.
  • Self-care – put your oxygen mask on first! (aha!) Who has time for self-care? Oprah did an incredible job highlighting the need to focus on your own self-care so you can be your best, most authentic self.  How often do you put yourself last because you feel the need to take care of everyone else first? Imagine if instead, you carved out time to take care of you, first? As my colleague, Ellen Faye, shared, “To live a life of wellness, you can’t neglect even one area of self-care.” And my BFF, Rosemary Holodak, shared, “Self-care is key to success!”
  • Create a Vision! (aha!) Oprah’s wellness quotient was the first step in identifying areas we’re not focusing on. And without focus, how can we achieve anything? It was actually another “Aha moment” to hear Oprah talk about visions and intentions. As my friend, Alyson Chugerman shared: “Creating possibilities and stepping outside my comfort zone to live in my vision is my top takeaway.”
  • Live in the present! Again, you might say yeah, but … and fill in the blank. We tend to carry our past around (the bad, the really bad, and the downright ugly), like it’s a medal, we need to display and always remind people of, when in fact, remembering our past, and the baggage we carry with us, only weighs us down. Oprah shared some painful “pasts” – and encouraged us to embrace our past, but don’t let it define who we can be today or in the future. And while Oprah has always been an open book, she consistently walks her talk. She looks to the future with incredible optimism and focuses on her best future self. She encourages us to do the same.
  • Live a life of gratitude! Oprah shared her firm belief that she is the woman she is today because of her past, not despite it. She embraces the mistakes she has made in the past, and the wrongs done to her, as opportunities for growth – and through it all, she journals (aha!). She encouraged us to start a gratitude journal and to begin each day with 3 simple entries. What are you grateful for? #Gratitude
  • Special Guests: Jesse Israel, Rachel Hollis, Julianne Hough + Mindy Grossman – made for fun conversations, laughs, aha moments, and on your feet dancing! Google these folks for more inspiring stories.
  • Super Special Guest – Michelle Obama! I felt like I was on the living room couch with Oprah and Michelle (yes, we’re on 1st name basis), just having a casual conversation about empty nesters and life in general. And while I admire Michelle’s focus on health and wellness, it’s the motto she delivered in 2016, “when they go low, we go high” that had all 15,000 attendees cheering! Oh, what the world could be if we all lived by this motto!
  • “I can! I will! Watch me!” (aha!)- Oprah’s closing words of inspiration. I hope my summary has lifted you up and brought you some ideas on how you too can live your life in focus. Wishing you a fabulous 2020, full of powerful intentions and inspiring successes!


Are you looking for your own “aha” moment? While I’m no Oprah, by any means, I do offer one-on-one casual conversations to discuss organizing challenges, downsizing dilemmas, and secrets to show-ready listing photos. You might just have your own “aha” moment! Give us a call (845) 242-2869. We’re happy to meet with you to discuss your situation. Mention this newsletter for 10% off your first organizing session!


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