Glennon Doyle Talks Marriage, Sexuality & Choosing An Untamed Life

In this episode of MarieTV we do have some
adult language. So if you have little ones around grab your
headphones now. Hey, it’s Marie Forleo, and welcome to another
episode of MarieTV and the Marie Forleo Podcast. So today you are in for a treat. I have one of my dearest friends, she’s a
brilliant writer and she’s got a new book out that I know you are going to love. Glennon Doyle is the author of the #1 New
York Times bestseller, Love Warrior, which was an Oprah’s Book Club selection, as well
as the New York Times bestseller, Carry On Warrior. Glennon is an activist and speaker, and she’s
the founder and president of Together Rising. She lives in Florida with her wife and three
children. Her latest book, Untamed, is available now. Glennon. Hi baby. I know my audio guy’s like, “What the hell
is she doing?” You guys, Untamed. I texted you from the plane, I was halfway
through. I was bursting out of my skin because this
thing is incredible. I was like, “Who is my friend? Who has my friend become? How has she become one of the most brilliant
moving writers I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading in my life.” I have so many damn underlines in here, I’m
like, “Holy cow, this interview is going to be …” I was like, asked you, texted you,
“How long do you have today?” Because this conversation’s going to be
big. Congratulations. Thank you. I can’t believe you said bursting out of your
skin. That’s what I want this to do. Let’s get women to burst out of their skin. And it will, and it will. I have a feeling it’s going to be atop anything
that you can possibly imagine. So. I love the line, “When women learn how to
please, we forget who we are.” For those in our audience who may not know
who you are quite yet, or just may not be familiar with your story and your journey,
can you share a little bit about what inspired you to write Untamed? I will share another line. I’ve been doing this a lot in this interview
you guys, basically telling Glennon about her own brilliant words. “What follows is how I got caged and how I
got free.” Yeah. Well, who I am. I’ve spent the last 10 years writing and speaking
about feminism really, about women trusting themselves and believing in themselves and
conspiring together and challenging institutions and ideas. Then I got all of that tested fairly recently,
a few years ago. I was struggling for many reasons in my marriage. That was the last book, and I was at an event,
and a woman walked in the door and I looked at her and three words swelled up in my being,
and the words were, “There she is.” For a long time, I thought those words had
come from on high. This was some magical Disney moment. It took me a while to realize that those words
had actually come from within, right? That I was actually hearing from the voice
of the person I was before the world told me who to be, right? Because I fell in love with her, and it was
the first time I’d loved someone beyond the people who I had had been conditioned to love,
right? I wanted her so much, and it was the first
time I had wanted something beyond who I’d been trained to want and what I’d been trained
to want. Right? What unfolded next was this question, will
I trust that voice? Will I trust myself? Because what I realized is it’s one thing
to be a feminist out in the world saying, “Believe women, trust in women,” and it’s
quite another thing to become a woman who actually trusts herself. Yes. Right? Because the whole rest of the world, you can
imagine, the whole rest of the world was saying to me, “No, no, no, no, no, no, no,” about
upending my life, and following my truth to love Abby. But I think that’s when you realize that you’re
starting to untame when the whole rest of the world is going, “No,” and you’re going,
“Yeah.” That is the good stuff. Yes. You’re like, “If this makes no sense to me
the world, then this must be me finally hearing from myself.” Yes. Yes, yes, yes. Again, for those who don’t know your journey
specifically, all of this was going down when your last book was soaring to the top of the
charts. Oprah had you on the show. We’re talking about marriage, you’re a faith-based
person. There’s all of these different layers and
it’s like, “Whoa!” And life isn’t convenient that way. Yes. Right? You’ll get tested right at the moment… You’ll get tested. The universe will say, “That’s nice that you’re
out there preaching that. Do you believe it?” Right? Because yeah, I announced my divorce I think
a few weeks before my book came out that was touted as a marriage redemption, and this
is life, right? Yes. This is life. Yes. Before we go any further, we have a lot of
writers and aspiring writers and creators in our audience, and I want to take a little
bit of a right turn for a minute into the structure of the book, because I get asked
a lot of questions about, “Oh my gosh, I have this other idea for a book,” or, “I want to
write my first one, how do I do it?” What I so appreciated about yours, was it’s
like these little… I would call them almost like little chapterettes,
toastettes, little delicious pieces of toast that I want to put tomatoes and mozzarella
on, and then we go into an area that there’s Q&A, and then it’s different. It is untamed and it’s structured. So I’m curious from the craft of writing side,
did you go in with that intention or did the book reveal that to you as you were writing
it? It felt to me, writing this book –– art,
feels to me the same way that religion or sexuality, all these categories that we have,
right? So I have this wild faith inside of me, right? This unique wild idea about who God is and
who I am and how we co-create together, and then I get this blueprint for religion, and
I’m like, “Not that. It doesn’t fit in there,” right? Yeah. Or I have this a sexual identity, right? That’s weird and different, and I can’t really
explain and was different last year than it is this year. Then they’re like, “Here’s the blueprints
for sexuality.” I’m like, “What’s in here, the wild in here
doesn’t fit inside there,” which is what a lot of people are saying now, which is why
our old ideas of sexuality are crumbling, and our old ideas of religion are crumbling,
right? Yes. Same with art. I wrote this book which is really about getting
that wild inside out into the world and living with integrity, which means that our insides
match our outsides, right? In a very structured way at first, it was
essay after essay about what it means to be a woman in the world. And I sat down with a dear friend, and I was
figuring out why isn’t this working? By the way, this is 100,000 words in. Okay? Yeah. That’s no small amount. That… No, at that point you’re like, “I’ll just
make this work.” Right? Yeah. We figured out, “Oh, you’re writing a book
about being untamed and you’re trying to put it in an old structure that’s been created
by somebody else.” You’re trying to birth this thing, this idea. I mean art is just about having a vision inside
of us and somehow through all this blood, sweat and tears, making it real in the world. You have this particular wild vision inside
of you and you’re trying to fit it into somebody else’s structure. Burn it, throw it away, let it all burn. Start over. The opening vignette is about a cheetah. I wrote it like that cheetah. I want to run through this. I don’t want to second guess myself, I don’t
want to try to fit it into anybody, I want the reader to be breathless by the end. Right? That’s how I wrote it, and I think it feels
wild. It does. It feels fantastic, and when I say it makes
sense, I mean on an intuitive and soulful level, not necessarily from a logical structured
place because that’s why I was like, “Yes.” I was like, “Even how this book unfolds is
untamed.” I’m curious, from the publishing standpoint
or editing standpoint, did you get some pushback initially or… Yes. Yes, okay. Cool. Talk… If you don’t get to pushback initially, that
means you’re not doing anything new. Yes. Right? Absolutely. It’s very interesting to be an artist because
your job is to always push the envelope, to always do the next thing that no one’s ever
seen before. But inherent in that is that you’re bringing
that new thing to a structure that is built on, but all of these other things have worked. Totally. Right? It is your job as the visionary to push back
on that. It is their job by the way, to still say,
“Yikes.” But that’s why it’s so important to be with
a team and be with an editor, be with a publishing house that believes in your vision even when
they’re afraid. Absolutely. Right? We experienced that with Everything is Figureoutable
too, and I was really grateful to have people that I could have those tough conversations
with and that we can go back and forth, and for me to be able to just remind them like,
“Hey, here’s why you invested in me because you saw something different than I was going
to do something a little different.” Yeah, I just… And you trust your people that they’ll get
it, right? Yes. It’s not just with art, it’s with your life,
it’s with your relationship, it’s with the way that you speak about your faith. Like, “Oh my God, that’s scary. That doesn’t fit into the mold.” I think they’ll get it. Yes, 100%. I think they’ll get it, and even if they don’t
agree, they’re going to feel that… They might not say, they’re going to feel
the truth and the beauty in it. That’s right. Right? We’re not trying to be right, and when you’re
an artist and they say, “That won’t sell,” you have to say, “Okay, all right. I’d much rather make what’s real and true
and see what happens than change this thing to fit what you tell me will happen next.” Yes, absolutely. You talked about the cheetah story, which
by the way, come on. I love a theme. Let’s stay on theme, baby. The story about the cheetah and the dirty
pink bunny, oh my God, I was laughing but also the metaphor of that just struck me so
hard. I’m wondering if you can share that story,
because I think it alludes to the fact that so many of us begin to get caged at a very
early age. Yeah. I love that day, because when you’re messing
with ideas in your mind and then you see the metaphor for it in the world, there’s no more
exciting moment, right? Yeah. I’m at the zoo, this safari park with my daughters,
and we go to this thing called the cheetah run. This is the park’s big event for the day. The zookeeper comes out, and she’s holding
the leash of a lab. I’m like, “What?” She says, “Is this our cheetah?” The kids all say, “No.” She said, “You’re right. This is Minnie the lab. We raised Minnie alongside Tabitha, the cheetah,
so that we could tame her. Now, Tabitha and Minnie are best friends,
and Tabitha does whatever Minnie does.” Something about it, and we watched the cheetah
run. Tabitha… Minnie went first, and they attached this
pink stuff, dirty bunny to a Jeep, this little Jeep, and then the Jeep took off, and Minnie
the lab chased the dirty pink bunny, right? Tabitha watches from her cage. Open the cage, Tabitha walks out, just majestic,
gorgeous, muscles rippling. This gorgeous majestic creature stands at
the freaking starting line and chases this dirty pink bunny. Why is this wild animal following this well
worn path, settling for this applause of these spectators when she could turn to those zookeepers
and tear them to shreds if she remembered her wild. Right? Why is she doing it? Because she’s been tamed, because she’s been
raised to be a lab. It just struck me that, “Holy crap, if a cheetah,
if a freaking cheetah can be tamed to forget her wild, certainly a woman can too. Right? Yes. Then I started thinking about all of the dirty
pink bunnies that women are trained to… To chase, yes. …chase. Right? I talked to a group of women recently, and
they were , and at first they weren’t buying this cheetah thing, and I was like, “Okay,
all right. I want you to start talking to me about all
of the things that you were taught to believe about what makes a good girl, what makes a
good wife, what makes a successful woman,” and they just started, “Oh, be quiet, be small,
be pleasing, be…” Nice.
“…accommodating, be nice, be humble,” and then, “Oh, there’s your dirty pink bunnies.” Be perfect, be thin, be beautiful, be faultless,
be… over and over and over again. Then we wonder why we are unfulfilled, why
we are exhausted, why we are overwhelmed and underwhelmed at the exact same time. It’s because we were meant for wildness, but
we’re chasing these dirty pink bunnies that somebody else put in our path. Totally. Right? Yes. Yeah, that’s the cheetah. I think it was so cool, because later, they
led Tabitha into this field, and then the zookeeper started talking about cheetahs that
were raised in captivity, right? The little girl raised her hand and said,
“But does Tabitha miss the wild?” And the zookeeper said, “No, no, no, no, no. Tabitha was born here. She doesn’t know any better.” Right? Or she doesn’t know any different. Tish, my daughter, was watching Tabitha in
that field and she pointed to Tabitha and she said, “Mommy, she changed.” I look over at Tabitha and Tabitha is a different
animal away from the zookeeper, away from the dirty pink bunnies. Her posture has changed, she’s looking regal,
she’s looking fierce, she’s stalking the periphery of the fence, looking beyond the fence. You could just see this energy rise up into
her, and Tish looks at me and she goes, “Mommy, she turned wild again.” I thought, “Oh, that’s what happens because
Tabitha has never seen the wild. It’s in her.” Yes. Right? That’s what women are feeling. It’s this restlessness, this stalking of the
periphery. This is all I’ve seen. All I’ve seen is a bunch of Minnies, right? But I know I’m meant for something different. Right? I know my faith is bigger than this religion
I’ve been handed, I know my sexuality is wider than this category I’ve given, I know my potential
is bigger than the opportunities that have been put in front of me, I know I’m meant
to love deeper, I know I’m meant to be loved, deeper and realer and truer, and it doesn’t
matter that I can’t see it because it’s in my imagination, and I really think that imagination
is not where we go to just dream up something. That imagination is where our truest reality
is. Yes. Right, so… Right. If we start there and lead from the inside
out instead of the outside in, that’s how we create the truest most beautiful from our
wild. Yes. I love the line that you wrote, “Who was I
before I became who the world taught me to be?” I feel like so many of our early, when we’re
in our 20s and our 30s, at least my own experience, was trying to fit myself in, trying to chase
those fucking dirty pink bunnies. Oh God. I remember I was engaged at 23, thankfully
my inner knowing, she is so unbelievably loud. She will make me physically sick when I am
going too close to a path that is not true for me. So I’m super grateful for that. I want to shift because I think there may
be a lot of people listening right now who can relate to that feeling of both being overwhelmed
and underwhelmed at the same time, and in a form of pain. You write, “Being human is not about feeling
happy, it’s about feeling everything. Pain is not tragic, it’s magic. Suffering is tragic.” You said, “If you are in deep pain or angry,
yearning, and confused, you don’t have a problem, you have a life.” Let’s talk about pain, let’s talk about the
story of protecting Tish from pain. I think this is a great place to go next. Yeah. Well, after I fell in love with Abby, I was
really struggling to figure… I mean I was trained early to believe that
good mothers don’t break their children’s hearts, right? In order to be true to myself, I would have
had to leave my then-husband, which would have broken my children’s hearts, because
he is such a good man and such a good father, and still is one of my dearest friends. I was taught that being a mother, that a good
mother protects her children from pain, right? I’m standing in front of my daughter, Tish. She’s an extremely sensitive, fierce, wonderful
soul, and she’s doing her hair and she looks back at me and she says, “Mommy, can I do
my hair like yours?” Something in that moment I realized, “Oh,
every time my daughter looks at me, she’s asking a question,” right? She’s looking at me and she’s asking, “Mommy,
how does a woman do her hair? Mommy, how does a woman live? How does a woman love? How does a woman be loved?” Right? I realized, Oh, I am staying in this marriage
for my little girl, but would I want this marriage for my little girl?” I realized that in staying in that marriage
to protect her from pain, I was taming her, right? I was training her how to be a lab. I am a mother who… Our parenting generation, maybe every parenting
generation, gets this memo that mothers should show their love by martyring themselves for
their children, right? That mothers, their job is to just keep disappearing,
to keep putting their needs so far below everyone else’s that they just slowly disappear, and
what a burden for our children, right? To know that they are the reason that their
mom stopped living. Right? And to know that if one day they become parents,
that will be their fate also because they… If we teach them that martyrdom is the epitome
of love, they will feel like they need to rise to that definition. Right? Yes. What I realized in that moment was that this
is why Carl Jung said that “the greatest burden a child can have is the unlived life
of a parent,” because children will only allow themselves to live as fully as their
parents lived. So the duty of a parent is to not accept any
life, relationship, conversation, occupation, to accept nothing less true and beautiful
than we would want for our own children, right? Because they will only allow themselves to
step into lives as big as the ones that we allow ourselves to live. So that was a dirty pink bunny, that I was
taught that mothers are to be martyrs, right? Oh, who could have created that one? Who could’ve created this dirty pink bunny
after dirty pink bunny that insists in every arena that women get as small as possible,
and slowly die? Right? Well, we know the answer to that. Right. So if you go, “Oh my God, this little girl,
she doesn’t need her mother to protect her. She doesn’t need me to protect, to save her. She needs to watch her mother save herself.” Right? I threw away that dirty pink bunny of mothers
are martyrs and I said, “No, no, no. I’m going to create my own ideal, my own expectation,
which is that mothers are models.” Yes. Right? I will live my life so fully that my little
girl will have no other option than to live her life as fully as possible. Not to match mine, but to match herself. Yes, and on pain too, I love that you said,
“I can feel everything and survive. Everything that I thought would kill me didn’t. Every time I said to myself, ‘I can’t take
this anymore,’ I was wrong, and this is what’s great. I can also use pain to become. I am here to keep becoming truer, more beautiful
versions of myself again and again forever. What scares me more than feeling it all, is
missing it all.” I think for anyone listening to us right now
who finds themself in pain, it’s such a powerful reframe. Well, listen, we live in a capitalist culture,
and the way that people sell things to us is that they tell us through 17 million messages
a day that the reason that you’re sad and depressed and angry and lonely and heartbroken
is not because life is sad and depressing and heartbreaking and lonely, it’s because
you just need these countertops. Right? Everyone else is happy because they have these
countertops, and if you also… We’re like, “Okay, I’ll get the thing,” and
then we just keep going and we keep getting the thing and we keep getting the thing and
we’re still lonely because you can never get enough of what you never really needed. The lesson of my life is to figure out that
a very early age I learned that it is too much to have big feelings. I was a little girl who was trying to fit
in in every which way possible, and the world showed me a dirty pink bunny that girls are
pleasing and smile and are accommodating, and I had big feelings and I had big fear
and I had big rage and I had big all the big, and so I started numbing myself with bulimia. I became bulimic when I was 10, and I spent
the next 25 years in a cage trying to protect myself from my muchness. Right? I was too much. Numb, numb, numb, food, booze, but all the
things. Then I’m raising my little girl, right? Sometimes it just takes looking at the world
through another person’s eyes, especially a child, to forgive yourself and figure out
who you really were. She has so much. Big feelings, big all the things. This is a good example of her. When she was in kindergarten, her teacher
called me and said, “Glennon, we have an issue,” and I was not shocked. She said, “I just accidentally may have mentioned
to the kids about global warming and that the polar bears were losing their homes.” She said, “The rest of the kids were sad about
that, but able to soldier on to recess.” She said, “Tish is still sitting in the middle
of the carpet. She keeps asking me questions about polar
bears, she keeps asking who’s going to step up for the polar bears? Where’s the polar bear’s mom? I can’t get her to go out to recess.” Marie, I’m not kidding you when I tell you
that, for months, our freaking family’s life revolved around polar bears. We had polar bear posters on the wall, we
adopted four freaking polar bears from Antarctica. I don’t know if there’s some website. It got so bad that at one point I asked my
friend to please email me and pretend that she was the president of Antarctica, and tell
me that the polar bears were now in fact fine. Because I just couldn’t take it anymore, this
child. One night, I’m getting ready to put Tish to
bed and I’m walking out the door and I hear, “Mommy,” and I’m like, “Jesus, no,” and I
go back and I say, “What’s wrong?” She says, “It’s the polar bears.” I said, “Oh hell no.” Hell no. She says, “Mommy, it’s just that, it’s
just that… it’s the polar bears now, but nobody cares, and so tomorrow it’ll be us.” And that little brat fell asleep, and I was
like, “Oh my God, it’s the polar bears.” Holy shit. I’m looking at her, and I’m thinking, “Oh
my God, she’s not crazy. She’s a prophet.” Right? Yes. The sensitive freaking kids. Basically, her teacher just told her the world
is ending, and then then it’s like can you just carry on? What I figured out is these sensitive souls,
they’re standing on the bow of the Titanic going, “Iceberg iceberg,” and everybody is
like, “We just want to keep dancing.” These sensitive souls in most cultures and
throughout history have been identified as important to the culture. They’re the shaman, they’re the medicine men,
they’re the poets, they’re the clergy. They’re the ones that are a little different,
a little eccentric because they can see things that other people can’t see, hear things other
people can’t hear, feel things that other people can’t feel, and so they are honored
as weird but crucial to the culture’s survival. Yes. But our culture is just so hell bent on efficiency
that we call those people broken, like they did with me, instead of understanding that
they are responding appropriately and importantly to a broken system. Amen. Right? Through raising that girl, I figured out,
“Oh my God, I was never crazy. I was a goddamn cheetah.” That’s right, girl. Right? Now, what I figured out is that I am still… Well, I should say I am finally the girl I
was before the world told me who to be, because we know that we start to internalize our conditioning
at 10 years old. 10 years old is when I became bulimic. Right? When Abby proposed to me, she went to talk
to my parents first, and the first thing my mom said is she started crying, and she looked
at Abby and she said, “Abby, I have not seen my daughter this alive since she was 10 years
old.” Tamed at 10, untamed at 43, right? I just finally returned. Untaming is not about becoming better. There’s no self improvement in it at all. It’s just returning to who you are as always
were, right? Before you started that self-improvement shit. Yes. Just returning to who you are, it’s an unbecoming
of all of the expectations and ideals and dirty pink bunnies that the world laid on
you, and it’s just returning to that person you were before you were 10 years old. What I figured out is, “Oh my God, the sensitivity,
the intense sensitivity that I hid from for so long is the sensitivity that makes me a
really good artist, and the fire that I have, which my therapist calls anxiety, but these
labels, right? I call it my fire, that makes me live a fearful
life sometimes, that’s the fire that makes me a really freaking good activist. Yes. Right? I was Tish on the floor of the school saying,
“I’m not ready to go out to recess yet.” I heard what you just said and it affected
me and my heart is broken, and I’m a little angry, I’m going to stay and keep asking freaking
questions. That’s how Together Rising started. Yes. It was a group, it was of women who will no
longer numb and ignore their anger and their heartbreak, but who will stay with it, who
will stay on the floor of the school and say, “I am not ready to go out to recess yet.” Let’s talk about Together Rising. We’ll bounce around. We’re going to go there later. But let’s go there now. So that anger and that heartbreak, you say,
“Despair says, ‘The heartbreak is too overwhelming. I’m too sad and too small and the world is
too big. I cannot do it all, so I will do nothing.’ Courage asks, ‘I will not let the fact that
I cannot do everything keep me from doing what I can.'” So you introduced us to Together Rising, but
again, for those people who don’t know, and I’m obviously a huge fan and huge supporter. I consider myself… Yes, you are. …a champion of Together Rising. Yes, you are. Tell us a little bit about the organization
and some of the phenomenal numbers. Well, my sister and I started Together Rising. What I would say about Together Rising first
is that it took me to become untamed. I think before I would’ve said I’m too sensitive
to make a difference in the world, and now I would say I am so sensitive that I can make
a difference in the world. Right? Yes. Every activist and artist I know is a little
mentally different, right? As a matter of fact, the only people I really
like are the people who are a little mentally different. We’re the most interesting, passionate, sensitive
group. So Together Rising started when my sister
and I decided to harness our anger and our heartbreak to make a difference in the world,
right? I think that is a very untamed thing to do
because one of the dirty pink bunnies that the world sells to women is that we are supposed
to be happy and grateful, and not angry all the time. Right? So women, I’m sure they say this to you, but
when raise their hand and say, “I’m struggling with anger, Glennon.” I say, “Why are you struggling with it? Are you struggling with joy? Just be freaking angry.” There’s only two types of women that I respect
in the world right now, and those are women who are angry, are women who are in an active
coma. Right? If you are in an active coma, when you wake
up, I’m going to send you some links and you are not going to believe the shit that’s going
on down here, right? So what I figured out is, “Oh, okay, in cultures
like ours and patriarchal cultures like ours, the zookeepers will always train every marginalized
group to be ashamed of their anger, and to suppress it and to stay in this cage of gratitude
and happy.” Why? Because pissed off women make change. Yes. So if we are just constantly ashamed of our
anger and trying to fix it, we won’t harness it and use it. So Together Rising is a community of fierce,
heartbroken, pissed off, hugely loving, cheetah untamed women and men who have decided to
harness their heartbreak together. We have raised $23 million through… The amazing thing is the average donation
is $28, right? So this is a very grassroots effort. What I’m proud of is the numbers. $23 million for change is unbelievable. But what I’m more proud of is how it’s raised. Every single thing that we do at Together
Rising, every effort, every cause that we give ourselves to is presented in a way that
is meant to educate all of us, right? Secondly, I’m really proud of how we give
the money, right? Because what we have figured out at Together
Rising is that we are not the warriors. One of my favorite quotes is, “The most revolutionary
thing you could do is introduce people to each other,” right? We have these heartbroken, angry warriors
in their homes, and we have these boots on the ground warriors who are out in the world
doing this incredible work and have been doing it forever, so like at the border, right? There are groups that have been on the ground
dealing with these separated families crises for so long. Our job is to find the boots on the ground
people, doing the most effective, scrappy, immediate, wise work and connect them with
the warriors in their homes. Right? That’s really important because what we found
over and over again as a nonprofit is that a lot of the giving goes to these big organizations
that have so much red tape. They’re what people know because they have
the most marketing money, right? Yep. But what we found over and over again is that
most of the most effective scrappy warriors on the ground, meeting the crisis that is
happening all over in the world right now, are led, are smaller and you don’t know them,
and they’re very often led by women and they’re most often led by women of color, and the
reason why is because the women of color have been in every single justice since the beginning
of time. We just got there, where the white women are
like, “We’re here now.” Right? Yeah. That’s one of the joys of our life, and one
of the responsibilities we take so seriously is to find the people who are doing the most
effective work on the ground and connect them. Warriors in the homes to warriors on the ground. Yeah, I mean we’ve become the leading organization
in reunifying families on the border. You know because you were a crucial force
outwardly facing, and your people should know behind the scenes, you’re one of our secret
angels who give so that every penny that we get from the public can go directly to people
in need. It’s the honor of my life. I think that every word that I write is really
about Together Rising. One of the reasons why it’s so closely related
to this book is that I just feel like when women become untamed in their lives, meaning
when they do the thing they think they cannot do, because it’ll rock the boat. When you do that in your relationships and
in your conversations and in your parenting and in your home, you start to do it out in
the world too. Yes. Right? Big time. We figure out that we can do… The world will tell us, “You can’t make a
difference. There’s nothing you can do.” That’s right. I mean, some of our favorite things that we’ve
done in the company because I’m finding ways to use our resources, financial, our
voice, anything that we have to help, and I just remember our first love flash mob that
we did together and it was just like I found myself sitting on the couch watching the nightly
news, hearing some horrific thing and feeling that heartbreak in my heart and going like,
“God, someone should do something.” I was like, “Wait, I’m someone.” Do you know what I mean? What do I have? I just happened to really love business and
I love making money and I love connecting with people. I’m like, “Oh, I have some assets here. How can I align them with people that are
doing the right thing to make some change happen?” So for people watching right now, one of the
things I loved… A gajillion things I loved about the book,
is a question that… Let’s say someone watching this right now,
they’re getting fired up, right? They can feel that wild coming back, and they’re
not sure though perhaps how to start making that bridge from where they are right now
to where some essence of them, a pre-verbal energy is imagining where they could be. So you have a question? Is it okay if I read it? Please. Yes. I’d love for everyone watching, you all have
to journal about this. I’m so big into writing too. It just helps us I think become clear in ways
that we can accomplish just mulling around in this thing. This thing is a messy place for me. Here’s the question. What is the truest most beautiful story about
your life that you can imagine? Tell me about the power of that question. Because I love when women come to you and
ask, “Glennon, what the hell do I do? I’m feeling so lost.” This is often what you tell them. This is what you ask them. Well, I think that we tend to have this tamed
language that we use, which you’ll hear women say, “What is the right thing to do? I want to be good, I want to be good mom.” If you hear right and wrong, good and bad,
that’s very tamed language, right? Because there is no right and wrong, there
is no good and bad except what you’ve been conditioned to. So for example, when I was deciding what to
do with my marriage, the feminists would tell me this was the right thing to do. The Christians would tell me this was the
right thing to do. The parenting experts would tell me this was
the right thing to do, and all of those things would be different, which made me realize,
“Oh, right and wrong are not up here.” Right? They’re not here. They’re culturally constructed ideas. Yes. Right? They’re also the cages that keep us locked
up, right? They’re purposeful, because we’re always thinking
should/shouldn’t, good/bad, right/wrong. To get us out of that language, that caged
language, that tamed language, there’s questions we can ask ourselves, which is, “Okay, forget
the right and wrong. What is true and beautiful?” Right? What happens, what I’ve realized is when I
use that language with women, their mind shuts down and this other thing rises up, right? Which is imagination, which is soul, which
is spirit, which is pure, which is wild, which is true to them, right? A woman might write to me and say, “My marriage
is struggling. What’s the right thing to do?” I’ll say, “Tell me the truest, most beautiful
story you can tell me about a marriage,” right? Then what happens is when you say story… Because when you start to ask people to dream
up something better, they are afraid to do it because they think if they admit that they
dream these things, then they will have to do it, and all women start seeing is their
bars, their cages. I would do that but I can’t because. What we want to say is forget the “can’t
because.” All we’re doing is dreaming, okay? Imagine that you never ever have to do this
thing, right? It’s just between you and me. What’s the most beautiful story you can tell
about parent and child? What’s the most beautiful story you can tell
about a woman in her community? What’s the… Then you just see all the cants flow away. I would if I could but… and then this other
thing rises up, and I think it’s super, super important to write it down. Yes. What you just said. Yes. I do not think that the truest most beautiful
life goes from here to reality. I think it comes to life one dimension at
a time. Correct. Right? It’s in the dimension of imagination, which
is not a pipe dream. What I really want to get to the wildest… What is in our imagination? It’s not Pollyanna, it’s not a pipe dream. It’s our marching orders, right? So first, forget the marching order part. It’s too scary. Write it down on a piece of paper. An architect does not dream up a building
and then start building, right? The architect has a vision, and then they
let it come to life on paper. Tell yourself, “You are only going to dream
it up. You’re not going to do a damn thing with that
dream.” Right? So you don’t scare yourself out of admitting
that you can dream. Yes. It’s okay, right? Then the amazing thing is you write that story
and you put it away somewhere, and then you keep living your good enough life, your good
enough marriage, your good enough without saying those things. I’ll give you an example of the story I was
thinking of when you told this, which is about the woman who wrote to me and said her marriage… I said, “Tell me the truest, most beautiful
life about marriage you can imagine.” She wrote it, she sent it to me, it was beautiful. It was just… Women are so scared of what they want, they
think it’s too much. What women want is freaking beautiful. She wanted to be loved, she wanted to be seen,
she wanted it to be valued. Everything she wanted was true and beautiful. Right? Took her a while, but she eventually put that
dream on her husband’s pillow, and then he didn’t say anything for three weeks. I’m like, “She’s emailing him like shit. I don’t know.” That was the best advice I had. Right? Then later later, he puts his true and beautiful
on her pillow. Right? They both… They both… I think women are so afraid to own what they
want, but there is no such thing as one way liberation. That’s right. When we free our wild and ourself, that frees
other people to free themselves too. Right? 100%, including our husbands, our sons… Our children. …our children, everyone. All of them. Everybody’s just asking, “Can I be free?” Yes. If we say yes with our lives, that’s the ripple
effect, right? Yes. And talking about can I say yes, a story that
had me laughing was Adam and the Keys, because I have an inside joke. We have an inside joke here at Team Forleo. So do you want to read this one? Sure. It’s pretty short. Okay. Adam and the Keys. You guys are going to love this. A few years ago, Alicia Keys announced to
the world that she was done wearing makeup. She said, “I don’t want to cover up anymore. Not my face, not my mind, not my soul, not
my thoughts, not my dreams, not my struggles, nothing.” That’s it, I thought. Last month, I read an interview with Adam
Levine. He said that while they were filming a show
together, he poked his head into Alicia Keys’s dressing room. She had her back to him, and she was leaning
into the mirror putting on makeup. He smiled and said, “Oh, I thought Alicia
doesn’t wear makeup.” She turned around, looked at him, lipstick
in her hand, she said, “I do what the fuck I want.” That’s it. Oh my God. Again, on the plane, the people sitting next
to me, they were like, “What is going on over there?” We say that phrase in our company all the
time. I often tell it to guests before they’re going
to come on, and I’m like, “Hey, we can do this however you want. You know why? Because it’s my fucking show. I do what the fuck I want, because I’m a grown-ass
woman.” Yes. There is so much like, yeah, that’s picante
Marie, spicy Marie coming out. But it’s just the truth, the truest of the
truth, and it just had me howling. I want to move on to something. I get asked this question a lot, and it’s
essentially, if you’re any bit of a public figure or the type of work that you want to
create and share with the world requires you to share things publicly online or perhaps
speak in public, folks are really afraid of criticism, afraid of the pushback that comes
back. I thought it was interesting you wrote about
… that it’s easier for the world to love a suffering woman than it is to love a joyful
woman, and that someone stood up at an event that you were speaking at and just said, “I
used to really be able to relate to you and now I don’t really relate to you anymore.” I’ve heard versions of this, like, “I used
to like you when you had the brick wall.” I’m like, “Bitch, I’m growing.” Do you know what? It’s just… Absolutely. Yeah. What was your experience of that? Well, criticism comes in all kinds of forms
to women, but I think in terms of women who are untaming, this is going to be the one
that they get the most often. I was at an event recently, but it happens
all the time recently, where a woman will stand up and say, “When you used to talk about
suffering and pain and being miserable all the time, I related to you. But now I don’t know. Ever since you married Abby, ever since… I find it harder and harder to relate to you.” I understand that. Okay? I was at my daughter’s soccer game recently,
and there was this girl on the other team. She was just rubbing all of us soccer moms
the wrong way. I don’t know. I was looking at my friends and they’re like… I felt this on the inside too, and so I’m
like… Now learning that my knee jerk reaction is
my conditioning. It’s important and We can forgive ourselves
for it, right? Our knee jerk reaction is our conditioning. It’s not our wild. So every time I have a bitchy response like
that, I think, “Okay, what’s going on here?” So I’m watching her, she is, this girl, she’s
walking around like she owns this field, right? The other annoying thing is she’s on the other
team and she’s very good, right? She doesn’t even look like she’s trying that
hard. She’s like… I’m going through this annoying thing, and
I’m thinking, “Oh my God, Glennon, she’s 12. She is 12, and you don’t like her because
she’s confident.” Right? What’s going on there is our conditioning,
which it’s proven. We know. We know, we know study after study that the
more confident, successful, joyful a woman, a man becomes, the more people like and trust
him, and it’s a bell curve. The more joyful and successful and fierce
and bold a woman becomes, the less we like and trust her. Right? It’s our taming. That’s all it is. What we say, what our conditioning, what our
teaming says is we look at a bold, fierce, confident woman and we say, “I can’t put my
finger on it. I just don’t like her. Right? I can’t put my finger on it. It’s freaking misogyny,” right? Because we’ve been taught… I won’t put my finger on it. Right? Yes. It’s because we’ve been taught since we were
children that women should stay quiet and uncertain and suffering. Suffer like it’s our job. And modest. And modest and quiet and accommodating, and
the second we see a woman who has stepped out of that cage, it is in us to want to put
her back in it. Right? What I think is part of our untaming, and
I’m working on, we all need to work on, is if we do not start, instead of dismissing
and shaming and voting for bold, confident women, we just won’t have any left, right? That’s dismal and scary. We got to support the hell out of… Even when our knee jerk reaction is, “Who
does she think she is?” What we need to tell ourselves is she’s a
goddamn cheetah. That’s right. Please vote for the cheetahs. Vote for the freaking cheetahs. Please, God. Well, I need a matching… I’m going to get MC Hammer pants and a cheetah
top. Your version of cheetah. I’m going to come and hang out in Florida
with you. As we wrap up today, first of all is did we
cover everything that we’ve wanted to cover before I have you read… You always cover everything, Marie. I know. There’s… You’re the best at this. A gajillion thanks more. But if you would be so kind as to read a little
bit that I have flagged for you at the end, I think it will wrap us up on quite a note. Here you go, my love. Okay. “I will not stay, not ever again, in a room
or conversation or relationship or institution that requires me to abandon myself. When my body tells me the truth, I’ll believe
it. I trust myself now, so I will no longer suffer
voluntarily or silently or for long. I’ll look at those women to my left and right,
who must stay, because it’s that time for them, because they have to know what love
and God and freedom are not before they can know what love and God and freedom are, because
they want to know, because they are warriors. I’ll send them every bit of my strength and
solidarity to help them through this part, and then I’ll pick up my mat and slowly, deliberately,
lightly walk out. Because I have just remembered that the sun
is shining, the breeze is cool, and these doors? They’re not even locked.” Yes. Congratulations, my love. This is such an incredible gift to all of
us. For everyone watching, you have to get your
hands on Untamed, get several copies for every woman and man you know. It is just brilliant. I adore you, I love you and thank you so much
for coming on today. Thank you. Thank you, Marie. Now, Glennon and I would love to hear from
you. So I actually want everyone to answer a question
that we talked about in today’s episode, and I’m going to read it to make sure I get it
right. So I would love to hear from you, what is
the truest, most beautiful story about your life that you can imagine? Now, as always, the best conversations happen
over at So go on over there and leave a comment now,
and while you’re there, be sure to subscribe to our email list and become an MF Insider. You’re going to get a jolt of positivity and
really good tools and actionable ideas each and every week in your inbox. Stay on your game and keep going for your
dreams because the world really does need that very special gift that only you have. Thank you so much for watching, and we’ll
catch you next time on MarieTV. Hey you having trouble bringing your dreams
to life? Well guess what. The problem isn’t you. It’s not that you’re not hard working
or intelligent or deserving. It’s that you haven’t yet installed the
one key belief that will change it all: Everything is Figureoutable. It’s my new book and you can order it now

About the author


  1. "Mothers should show their love by martyring themselves." I'm about 25 minutes in and this made me cry. I'm not even a parent or in a relationship. I'm just mad and sad as a woman.

  2. I loved this interview!!! I will definitely get this book and others to share with my friends so they too can be f'ing cheetahs !!! My dream is that I get awesome clients, one especially that is truly handsome, talented and on my spiritual wavelength that I can help, share and teach but he can teach me as well. as I always learn too. I love what you all shared about it not having to happen right now but applying, lending and extending the energy to become the person ready for the experience. Everything happens in Divine time. Great inspiring teachers though are a must!!! Thanks ladies!

  3. I'm so glad to hear someone else makes the comment about still living life even when your a parent. Someone once told me that they devote all their life to their children. And I thought well that's pointless to some degree because you live for them and your teaching them to live for their children and it goes on and on. A world revolving around only your children no. I think they should be a big priority but not your whole world or existence if it is not what your truly desire. I loved loved the whole idea about it's not bettering yourself it's being yourself and this whole interview and the ideas

  4. This was such an amazing conversation. I can't wait to read this book. Glennon is someone I'd love to have coffee or cocktails with. Thanks, Marie!

  5. This was AMAZING. When she acknowledged that women of color have been fighting for injustice since the beginning of time and the white women are like “we are here now!” I started clapping and cheering out loud in my bathroom lol 👏🏽✊🏽💪🏽💯

  6. One of the best interviews I have seen! So insightful, authentic, and simply amazing!! You guys had me hooked! Thank you Marie for bringing such meaningful content! 
    PS. Glennon loved you before and still love you now. You do you, sister:-)

  7. As mothers of the world, we need to help guard to protect our boys from suffering the same fate, too. I’ve recently found (31 years old) that conditioning covers natural talent. To encourage prosperity and happiness on this earth, we need to help encourage talent-led lives. The conditioning cycle must end.

  8. My dream life would the travel around the world as a photographer and see man and women being really respectful and nice to each other.

  9. Great video Marie!!!! You rock!!!!! On October 8, 2013, my marriage ended. On October 9, 2013, my new life began!!!!! Now I am embracing who I really am. And living on my mission for what I am passionate about!!!! Now I am living life to the fullest and each day is a new adventure !!!!!! I am so thankful for my past. Because my future is so much better !!!!

  10. This is what Brené Brown meant too: We don’t just braved the wilderness around us we are the wilderness it is inside us. So just like Tabatha didn’t need to have seen the wild to realize the wild inside of her and feel it rise

  11. Glennon is full of fire and wisdom in this interview! Use these quick links to catch the highlights:
    2:00 — The story of how Glennon fell in love with Abby.
    5:08 — Why Untamed breaks all the conventional publishing rules.
    15:35 — The Motherhood Myth that was harming both Glennon and her daughter.
    21:15 — How polar bears helped Glennon accept her big feelings.
    26:40 — Why heartbreak is the key to effective activism.
    41:00 — What to do when people criticize your authenticity.
    42:18 — Why we tend to dislike bold, confident women (and what to do about it!).

    Like this episode? I talked to Glennon’s wife, Abby Wambach, about her book, Wolfpack. Watch it here:

  12. Loved this! I can relate to being wild and constantly fighting whenever someone or something tried to tame me. I also went through close friends not supporting me as I became more and more untamed. So yes, let’s support one another, Please.

  13. That question about the vision of my most beautiful and joyful life got me all in tears. Thank you for that.
    A massive sign I'm probably tamed. I've just realised I'm even tamed when I'm making videos for my channel. Thinking I've got to filter myself. F that!!!

    Thank you for this conversation. It's my friends bday. Getting one copy for myself and one for her. Hopefully they already have it here in the bookstore in the UK.
    Lots of love 💜🙏🏻

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