As Ariana Huffington writes in “Thrive,” her latest book, she has joined the masses of people trying to slow down, meditate and find an alternative to the harried, no-sleep route to success. Or, at least, those who are talking about it.
On Tuesday night, she joined a packed meditation salon full of women -- well dressed and painted toenails all -- and men in rows of black meditation chairs at Unplug, a meditation studio on L.A.’s Westside, to talk about the book.
Unplug’s founder, Suze Yalof Schwartz, interviewed Huffington, the president of the Huffington Post, and then Huffington’s sister, Agapi, led everyone in a silent meditation and Huffington signed copies of the book.
Sleep, Huffington said, is lacking for so many people that if one types into Google the phrase “why am I so ...” the No. 1 and No. 2 prompted responses are “so tired” and “always tired.” “It’s kind of sad and depressing, to the point where being tired is the new normal,” she commented.
Huffington said her change was prompted by a collapse, seven years ago, due by sleep deprivation. She said she broke her cheekbone and began a journey to redefine success to include “wisdom, wonder and giving,” along with the usual measures -- what she calls “the third metric.”
The more she takes her own advice, she said, “I increasingly dislike who I am when I don’t do it.”
Kind of makes you wonder how a media mogul and celebrity can get everything done if she’s sleeping eight hours, meditating, stopping to smell the roses, and write books.
“Thrive” is full of recommendations, including to take all electronic devices out of the bedroom when it’s time to sleep; to sleep in pajamas -- or nothing -- so your body gets the message that it’s sleep time not workout time (Huffington says she wears pink silk PJs); and meditate every day, even if it’s only for five minutes.
Huffington noted that Schwartz had migrated from the fashion world to open Unplug, calling it “a real tipping point in the zeitgeist.”
Executives these days, Huffington joked, “started coming out not as gay but as meditators.”