Tia Carrere Talks About the Women’s Conference

Tia Carrere is an actress, singer, and single mother. But first and foremost, she's a woman. We talked to the incredible spirit about her experience at the 2010 Women's Conference…

What about the Women's Conference spoke to you?
As a single mother a lot of times you tend to be very isolated. It's hard enough working and setting up play dates, and you rarely feel like you're part of a community. And the Women's Conference was a huge community of women seeking empowerment. There were 15,00 0 women there for the same reason — searching for meaning in their lives.

When Oprah accepted the final Minerva Award of the evening she said the Maria Shriver embodies the spirit of Minerva. What do you love about Maria Shriver?
Maria Shriver is a warrior woman like Minerva, but she has a heart and the wisdom to dig deeper. And what I particularly like about Maria is that she is not afraid of standing up there and sharing her fears, her foibles, and uncertainties. She's not bulletproof, and she's not all sound bites. She speaks from the heart and she's honest – especially for someone who's such a public figure. It's powerful. She's not afraid of feeling sad, and she's not afraid of feeling uncertain about her future.

Were there any other speakers that touched you?
Deepak Choprah and Goldie Hawn's session was very interesting to me. I am very pragmatic and believe in Western medicine. But Deepak cited scientific facts and Goldie Hawn talked about studies done on happiness. I even bought all four of his books because it open up my mind. In our go-go-go-go lives we overwhelm ourselves with stress. It's very thought-provoking how meditation and yoga and even just spending a few times a day being silent and thinking about your breath can really help you center yourself. And I know I fall victim to that myself. I'm can be busy and will spinning and spinning out of control, and sometimes and I wonder why I'm so stressed or why I get a cold. Deepak said our body is a symphony and everything works together. I think a lot of people are afraid of what he was saying because it's so Eastern and so different from what they were brought up knowing.

What about Michelle Obama's speech? What did you think of it?
Michelle Obama was amazing. Because Maria Shriver blew the doors off for me and then Michelle Obama comes on stage and shines a light on military families. I never thought about the particular plight that the families have to deal with – between constantly moving and changing careers and schools and support systems. I never thought about that sacrifice on behalf of the troops and their families. There were so many stories of people with courage, and I was reaching for a tissue hundreds of times that day.

The theme of the conference this year was “It's Time.” What does that mean to you?
For me “It's Time” means it's time to take control of myself as a woman … Like Oprah said, “I don't fear what the future holds, for I know who holds my future and that is myself.” That's what I have to remember. Don't fear the future because you hold it within yourself. There's always a choice. I have to ask myself “Will this decision get me closer to where I want to be in my life?” And I need to approach each decision in my life with my goal in mind. It's not being a victim of life or circumstance. It's time to be the champion of my own life.