Land of Oz

Daily opportunities to chase what matters

Back Q&A Sep 1, 2013 By Douglas Curley

As an esteemed authority on wellbeing and relationships, Lisa Oz has spent her career carefully balancing the demands of the corporate world with her devotion to her faith and family.

She’s a producer, writer, actress and frequent co-host of her husband’s “The Dr. Oz Show.” She has been on the New York Times Bestseller list six times, most recently for her newest book, “US: Transforming Ourselves and the Relationships that Matter Most.” She is the founder and president of Ozworks, a media and investment consulting company; a director at Pine Room Pictures, a production company specializing in family-friendly media; and the co-founder of HealthCorps, a nonprofit dedicated to transforming America’s youth.

During a recent conversation with Comstock’s, Oz shared her values and priorities and talked about how she incorporates them into her hectic daily life.

“Storytelling has always been a passion of mine. When I got to college, I didn’t realize I was looking for a job description to pursue, but I guess I was. I could either be an actress or an attorney, and that was it. I wanted more. As a species, we understand more through symbolism and imagery than through just the facts. That’s as old as human civilization’s timeline of communication.”

“Mine was a publicly arranged marriage. Our fathers’ were business associates and often dined together. One night they invited the two of us to join them. After that, we started dating. Within six months, we were engaged. We were married two years later. No regrets.”

“Working with your spouse is not like spending time on the beach together. But I do believe it’s a great way to spend concentrated time together. It’s great to have a common goal and the ability to be creative together. Lots of marriages, after awhile, have nothing new going on or exciting experiences to share. We have plenty all the time.”

“Family always comes first. I can’t think of a single time when I chose career over family. I never went on the road with a show. For me, balance means family first. However, I realize having this option is a luxury for me. I know lots of women who simply don’t have that ability. It’s a real blessing for me.”

“We have no social life. It’s family then career. We never go to movies. Fortunately, we have a creative outlet together and a very large extended family. Socially, I think I have two friends left that put up with me and my schedule.”

“I have no interest in proselytizing. I communicate values that are based in my spiritual belief. When interacting with others, I express compassion, kindness and genuine curiosity. Ultimately, I express my spiritual belief through actions, not words. If people ask me, I will share my beliefs. But only if asked.”

“As humans, we check out more than we check in. We should be looking at everything as an opportunity to grow. We need to tuck away our egos and instead connect to something higher. Everybody is not going to do what you want him or her to do every time. But instead of letting your ego get in the way, you have the option to show compassion. That’s how you grow personally.”

“Women are still the primary child-rearing individuals in a relationship. Frequently, they are now doing it as single mothers. Women have to really balance childbearing with earning a living. That wasn’t the case in the past. But now, women staying at home to raise the child are more the exception than the norm. A woman can be successful at both, but she must really focus on family and career and not get distracted by everything else. There are a million things pulling us away from our loved ones.”

“If you want to be the CEO but you’re spending three hours a day trolling on Facebook, it’s not going to happen. Social networking is very much like eating junk food. There are no real connections. If you’re eating potato chips, you’re not going to lose weight. If you’re looking to be professionally successful and fully engaged with your family, the best thing you can do is minimize activities that do not further your goals. My husband does not waste time, ever.”

“We’re really only accountable for what we struggle with. For me to say my family is my greatest accomplishment would be a cop out. I was blessed to be put into a wonderful, loving situation. That’s not the case for everyone. I can’t tell you how many of my college friends ended up in loveless relationships and are now on antidepressants. But for me, a great accomplishment is anything I personally struggled with to achieve. Writing my new book — without a ghostwriter — was like cutting my fingers. Finishing that was a great accomplishment.”

“There is a place and time for both science-based medicine and alternative medicine. In fact, I believe they are complimentary. I grew up in a household where my dad was a cardiac surgeon and my brother was a neurosurgeon. Both were open-minded and used alternative methods in their practices. You use what works. I don’t find them conflicting. In the world I grew up in, the methods were unified.”

“Alternative medicine is a multi-billion dollar industry, but there is no money there for research. So we do not have sufficient amount of science to support the alternative medical world. But just because you don’t have the results of clinical trials with 10,000 people does not mean it’s not effective. In alternative medicine, patients become more involved in the healing process. It is empowering to the patient.”

Lisa Oz will be the keynote speaker at the Capital Region Women’s Conference on Health & Wealth, Sept. 27, at the Sacramento Convention Center. For more information, please visit capregionwomen.com

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