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Oprah Shares Inspiring Words About Life As She Nears 70

The media icon, who turns 70, in January spoke about gratitude and the decision that led to her rise to global fame.

As Oprah Winfrey nears 70 years old, the cultural icon reflects on her “remarkable journey” from abuse and poverty to becoming a media mogul and billionaire. While her breakout role in 1985’s The Color Purple “changed everything,” she remains focused on uplifting others.

“I will never be done until my last breath,” Winfrey declared to People. And the end of life isn’t something she fears: “And whenever that happens it will be a peaceful breath,” she said.

A fulfilling life is one that involves being grateful for what you have been given, according to the media personality. Winfrey told the outlet, “Gratitude really is my religion.” She begins and ends each day with thanks, a practice she recommends in order to “walk through life feeling the abundance instead of the scarcity.”

Winfrey appreciates how different her path could have been had she stayed in Milwaukee. “I would have had an early death,” she believes. Instead, moving to live with her father in Nashville at the tender age of 14 set her on an extraordinary trajectory.

Global fame and success followed, including 25 years of her groundbreaking talk show. But Winfrey never lost sight of her purpose: “to help other people rise.” Her legacy, she knows, is the lives she’s touched: “Everybody who ever watched a show and decided because of something you said, I’m going to go back to school … That’s a life I touched. And you can’t get better than that.”

Winfrey continues to be inspired by the late poet Maya Angelou, who told her, “My wish for you is that you continue to astonish a mean world with your acts of kindness.” As Winfrey says, “that is what I intend to do.”

Even today, her purpose remains “to help other people rise.” And it is evident that her legacy already lives in the people she has touched through her many roles.

Winfrey’s movie-musical The Color Purple will be in theaters Dec. 25, 2023.

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