Oprah Winfrey has overcome childhood sexual abuse, rape at age 9, teen pregnancy, poverty, and an unstable upbringing to become a self-made billionaire media mogul who has inspired millions of people around the world.
As she looks back on her life at age 64, Oprah says she’s happier than anyone she knows — and that’s a lot of people.
During her iconic 40-year television career, Winfrey has met and interviewed thousands of wealthy, famous, and accomplished people, so she knows better than anyone that fame and fortune does not guarantee happiness.
‘I Don’t Know Anyone Happier’
“I don’t know anyone happier,” Winfrey told British Vogue. “I don’t know anyone who has a better life, or had a better life. I look at other people and I think they look happy. But not as happy as me.”
When Oprah declares her happiness, it’s not gloating. It’s a testament to her longstanding belief that life is what you make of it, and that a positive attitude can help you achieve miracles.
Winfrey says her best days are spent lounging around at her spectacular $90 million mansion in Montecito, California, where she chills out with her dogs, her boyfriend of 32 years, Stedham Graham, and spends time in her beautiful gardens.
Oprah has been happily dating her businessman beau since 1986.
“I can go weeks and never turn on a television,” Oprah says. “I’ve gone a summer not having it on. My guilty pleasure is I do nothing.”
While many people spend their days scurrying around looking for things to entertain or amuse themselves, Winfrey says she can feel gleeful just looking outside a window at her garden or reading a good book.
“Most people don’t even know what makes them happy,” she said. “But I can just sit on my porch and I’ll start reading a book and then realize, ‘OK, I’m not reading any more.’ I can just take it all in. I can just be.”
This type of inner peace and contentment is something that has taken Oprah years to cultivate. Winfrey has talked to countless self-help gurus, religious leaders, and happiness experts over the years, and come to the realization that true happiness comes from within.
Winfrey has revealed in previous interviews that she was raped at age nine and sexually molested by several family members during her childhood, resulting in pregnancy at 14.
“I was raped at nine years old by a cousin, then again by another family member, and another family member,” Winfrey recounted.
She had a spontaneous miscarriage, which she believes changed the course of her life. Winfrey has previously said that if she had been a teenage mom, her life would not have turned out the way it did.
Looking back, Oprah is grateful for her tragic life experiences and the inner strength they gave her to make her the person she eventually developed into.
Everyone suffers tragedies, disappointments, and setbacks in life. But you have to overcome them in order to survive and thrive. “You’ve got to lean to the happiness,” Oprah said.