Oprah’s Advice To Business Students

Dealing with a Bad Boss “Drunk with Power”

“I decided not to file a suit against him because I knew, at the time, that I would lose, that no good would come of it. I would be blackballed in television….that it would turn into a major thing. And I knew I didn’t have long to stay there. I had a vision for what the future was. Even though I couldn’t place exactly where my future would be [because] I knew who held the future.”

Understand Your Intentions Before You Act

“[I said to my producers]: Do not bring me a show unless you have fully thought out what is your intention for doing that…because if there is a mantra or law l live by, it is the third law of physics: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. I know what I act on is going to come back to me in a circular motion, just like gravity…So what also propels the action is the intention. So I don’t do anything without being fully clear about why I intend to do it, because the intention is going to determine the reaction, result, or the consequence in every circumstance…That really is the secret to why we were No. 1 all those years, because it was intention-fueled, intention-based purposeful programming.

Self-Awareness: The Key to Success

“For me, being – your presence, your connection to your self and that which is greater than yourself – is far more important than yourself.  But also [being] is THE THING that fuels what you do. I know that one thing that is so important for what happens here at the graduate school is that you have leaders who are self-actualized and understand what your contribution to change the world can be. You can only do that if you know yourself. You cannot do it unless you take the time to actually know who you are and why you are here.

I happen to know for sure that every human being comes called. And the calling comes beyond the definition of what your job is. There is an innate supreme moment of destiny for everyone…You cannot fulfill it unless you have a level of self-awareness, to be connected to what is the inner voice, the instinct.  I call it your emotional GPS system that allows you to make the best decisions for yourself…

Every decision that has profited me has come from me listening to that inner voice first…I live from the inside out…The real reason I am here is to help connect people to themselves and higher ideas of consciousness. I’m here to raise consciousness…In the beginning, I didn’t realize that. I thought, ‘Oh my God, I have a show.’”

How to Deal with Being the Only Person in the Room Like You

“I still walk in the room…and there’s a room full of white men, usually older…Usually I’m the only black person in the room. Also [it] never really concerned me because I don’t look at people through color. I didn’t get to where I am and who I am by looking at the color of people’s skin. I really literally took Martin Luther King at his word.”

There is a wonderful phrase by Maya Angelou from a poem that she wrote called ‘To Our Grandmothers’ that she says, ‘I come as one, but I stand as 10,000.’ When I walk into a room [and] I’m in circumstances where I feel that I’m up against some difficulties, I will literally sit and call on that 10,000. I know that being who I am and where I am didn’t come just out of myself. I come from a heritage. I own that, and I step into a room not just as myself, but I bring all that energy with me.”

How to Help Others

“How do you change a person’s life? Prior to starting my school in South Africa, I had this big idea – emotional – that I was going to take 100 families out of the Cabrini-Green projects and I was going to give them a new life and buy them homes. And that did not work. It failed miserably. I had a big sister program I started. Failed miserably. So I realized, first of all, you first have to change how a person thinks and sees themselves. You’ve got to create a sense of aspiration, a sense of hopefulness, so a person can have a vision for a better life. If you can’t connect to that, you lose, and they lose.”

On Becoming Unstoppable

“The real question is who are you and what do you want to do with it?…When you align your personality with your purpose, and nobody can touch you. And you wake up every day and you are fired up. Because everybody has a purpose…Your real job is to figure out why you’re really here…and get about business of doing it.”

Overcoming Failure

“There is a supreme moment of destiny calling on your life. Your job is to feel that, to hear that, to know that. Sometimes, when you’re not listening, you get taken off track. You get in the wrong marriage, the wrong relationship, you take the wrong job. But it is all leading to the same path.

There are no wrong paths. There is no such thing as failure, really. Failure is just that thing trying to move you in another direction. So you get as much from your losses as you do from your victories. The losses are there to wake you up…When you understand that, you don’t allow yourself to be thrown by a grade or by a circumstance because your life is bigger than any one experience. I always ask people on Super Soul Sunday, ‘what would you say to your young self?’ And every person, in one form or another, says, ‘Relax, relax. It’s going to be OK. It really is going to be OK.’

[That’s how you know] if you’re on a detour right now. When you’re not at ease with yourself, that is the cue that you need to be moving in another direction…When you feel you are off course, that is the key: How do I turn around?…The way through the challenge is to get still and ask yourself, ‘What is the next right move?’ ‘What is the next right move?’ And then, from that space, make the next right move…and not be overwhelmed by it because your life is bigger than that moment.”

DON’T MISS: 4 Key Tips For Future Business Leaders or What I Wish I Knew Before College

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