Bob Greene's Webcast Transcript
Barbara: Oh, Lord, no.
Bob: Well, no, your first 10 years is when you're wired for something. And the challenge is to rewire your thinking. If anyone in your life, especially someone in authority, really just reinforced that maybe you're not worthy or you're not working hard enough, or it could be a teacher. It could be a parent. It could be anyone that you looked up to. That wiring can be very damaging in your first to eight to 10 years of life.
Oprah: Because that's when you decide—make the decision whether you're worth it or not—in those first 10 years.
Bob: Yeah. And—
Barbara: Well—yeah. And my childhood does have a lot of tragedy in it and—yeah.
Oprah: This is—for all the people who say, oh, my God, as Linda said in her e-mail, "You know, I'm not thinking I hate myself or my mother," you know, this isn't about blaming your mother. This is about actually going back and seeing, "Where did I first get imprinted with this idea that other people's desires, other people's needs were more valuable than my own?"
Bob: That's a great way to put it.
Barbara: Well, see, and, Oprah—
Oprah: I can do that because I've done the work.
Barbara: That's the exact issue that permeates my entire life.
Barbara: That's exactly it. And I—yeah.
Bob: My recommendation would be to pursue this. Maybe some counseling is in order. But to go back there is really important because you mentioned you're close to 40 pounds. There's where you start impacting your health. It's an issue that's going to have lasting negative effects unless you address it now. And I'm almost positive, just in talking with you, that it's rooted somewhere very early on where you had something happen in your life where it's reinforced that maybe you're not worthy. You're not worthy of someone else's attention that you value and, therefore, your own. And I would—I would say now is the time to—to look at that in a counseling situation.
Oprah: Yeah. Or not in a counseling situation, Bob. You know, I haven't been counseled. I just did the work for myself. I mean, I literally went back and—because—well, you were my counselor actually.
Bob: Yes. And also you've been through this. You're up here giving advice and you are, in my opinion, an expert on it.
Oprah: Thank you.
Bob: I don't feel I'm getting that confidence that she does need at the very least someone else to talk about this and go back and replay.
Oprah: To help.
Bob: Who was it? Unravel how you're wired. Because it involves rewiring yourself.
Oprah: Absolutely. And for everybody who's watching right now and you don't have the money to go through a counselor, it really takes sitting down with yourself, literally, and I do mean sitting with yourself, and going back to what your childhood was like and really, as Bob was saying, those first 10 years and where you first got imprinted with the idea that you, you, your opinions, your self, was not as worthy as other people.
Bob: That's right. And also realize that the weight, in some ways, this may or may not affect you, but the excess weight in that respect for many people becomes armor. And as you start to drop that weight, the discomfort and feelings about yourself become much more intense, and that will always pull you back to going off your healthy plan of eating or whatever it is. So keep that in mind, and that's why it's so important to have somebody to talk about it. It can be a—a credentialed counselor, it can be a friend, but I do think you're in a position where you should speak to somebody about that.
Oprah: But the other thing is, it always goes back to—I said on the show last week that it's not what I've realized, which is so funny, because you and I wrote a book together, and my—my portion of that book was really all my journals over the past 15 years about weight when we did Make the Connection. And even you remember during the process of writing the book I kept saying, "What's the connection again? What is it? What is the connection again?" Because the idea for the book was—
Oprah: —Make the Connection was your title. But what I realized is, what I said last week, this is not a weight issue. This is a love issue. This is your love or worthiness, feeling worthy that you—you matter enough more than—or equally to all the other people that you're serving in your life and loving yourself enough to take care of yourself.
Bob: And that's really important. The other side of that is, how do you show yourself that you're worthy?
Bob: You simply do what it takes. And do you show the discipline and the care each day? And you can—as long as you get most of the time to do the things you say that you're going to do for yourself, you're going to reinforce the fact that you're worthy because you're worthy of whatever it is you go out and seek for yourself.
Oprah: Yeah. And that's going to answer the question that so many of you have about "How do I keep going and what's my motivation and how do I"—is—the motivation is you that you care enough about yourself to do this for yourself.
Barbara: You know, I just—
Oprah: Go ahead.
Barbara: Go ahead.
Oprah: No, you go ahead.
Barbara: I just had what you call an aha! moment when you all were talking and said, "I'm very—I'm very conscious of being on time, meeting my deadlines, not letting other people down," and I realized that I need to be that same thing for myself.
Oprah: Right. Right. That's me too. I won't let anybody down. But I will let myself down. And have. That's what this whole Best Life Week is about. That's what last week's show was about was my disappointment. I'm not sad about it. You know, a lot of people were writing in I'm so sad that you're sad. I'm not sad about it. I was disappointed, and there's no feeling worse than letting yourself down. And the recognition that I let myself down is what has motivated me to make change. I let myself down. I wouldn't do that to anybody else I know. Or didn't know.