Why Mia Farrow’s best advice to her son is motherhood in a nutshell
What is the best piece of advice Mia Farrow ever gave her son? We've got the answer.
Ronan Farrow is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist who writes for The New Yorker and makes documentaries for HBO. He has been an anchor and reporter at MSNBC and NBC News, and his writing has appeared in publications including The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post.
He is the winner of a 2018 George Polk Award as well as a 2018 National Magazine Award in the category of public interest. He is also an attorney and former State Department official. Ronan Farrow is the author of War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence.
Ronan Farrow: I think the most important piece of career advice I ever received was probably from my mother who used the phrase, “Be one with the target.”
And what she meant when she said that was, when you are engaging in some kind of a high stakes professional gambit, whether it’s you’re giving a speech or a presentation at work or you’re breaking a big story, if you are fully invested in the goal and it’s a greater goal than yourself it’s not about you— there’s a certain kind of armor in that, and people can attack you personally (and they certainly do attack me a lot personally) and they can try to weaponize whatever they want against you, but if you are really one with the target and you know that what you’re doing contributes to goals that are bigger than yourself and you are 100 percent off of thinking about you and your self-consciousness and your self-interest and on thinking about the problem and how you’re going to make things better through your work and communicating that to the other people involved in whatever project you’re working on, there’s no time to get mired in the “self” piece of it, in the kind of self-consciousness and the worry about self-interest that can, I think, sideline and distract.
That’s easier said than done. I don’t always live up to that, but it’s a great philosophy that I found really useful.
Ronan Farrow isn't the only big name in the Farrow household. His mom, Mia Farrow, is a big-time actress (Rosemary's Baby, Hannah and Her Sisters, The Great Gatsby) and instilled some of the wisdom she learned along the way into her son. Here, on Mother's Day, Ronan shares the best piece of advice he learned from her. Ronan Farrow's new book is War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence.
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