Michelle Obama Reveals Life Advice She Gives Her Daughters during Oprah Winfrey's 2020 Vision Tour

Michelle Obama reveals one important piece of advice she gives her daughters as they course through life. And it's more about looking inward than out.

For Michelle Obama, life’s path varies from person to person which is why she tells her daughters to “walk their own walk.”

Michelle sat down with Oprah Winfrey for the entertainment mogul’s '2020 Vision' tour and shared the advice she gives her children as they navigate through life.

ON LOOKING INWARD NOT OUT

In front of a packed Barclays Center in New York, the former first lady said that she advises her children to first and foremost know themselves.

“What I tell them is what I continue to tell themselves is that they have to walk their own walk. They cannot define themselves by looking at each other or looking at me or their dad. They have to take the time to get to know themselves.”

Aside from big life advice, Michelle says she often dishes out reminders to her children to the point that they get tired of it.

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From our family to yours, #HappyThanksgiving!

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Michelle adds that it’s important her children figure out what they want on their own and not to be influenced but what others want them to be or live in fear of how the world will see them.

“I don’t want them measuring themselves by external influences, and for young girls that is hard to do.”

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With #MothersDay just a couple days away, I find myself thinking a lot about the way my mother raised me. And even though our family was crammed into a tiny apartment, one of the greatest gifts she gave me was the freedom to explore and develop into my own person. For instance, even though we didn’t have much money, she and my dad cobbled enough money together to send me on a high-school trip to Paris, which opened up the world to me in so many ways. And now that I’m raising kids of my own, I wanted to pass that lesson on to my own girls. I’ve been so fortunate to be able to travel with Sasha and Malia all across the country and around the world—experiences my mother never would have dreamed of back when I was their age. But though the settings may be different, the message is the same, and it’s one I hope mothers everywhere pass on to their daughters—in seeking out new perspectives and reaching outside of our comfort zones, we can discover more about ourselves.

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A CRITICAL AGE

Michelle’s girls, Malia and Sasha are both in college now. Malia, 21 is a junior at Harvard while Sasha, 18 is in her freshman year at the University of Michigan.

The 56-year-old mom says it’s an age where they constantly judge themselves especially when it comes to their bodies.  But she reminds them not to worry about their age and not fitting into their clothes from previous years because it’s ridiculous to think that way.

“That’s like saying at 20, I’m really upset that I couldn’t wear my favorite overalls anymore from when I was 10,” she explains.

Michelle Obama promoting her book, 'Becoming' at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta in May 2019. | Photo: Getty Images

Michelle Obama promoting her book, 'Becoming' at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta in May 2019. | Photo: Getty Images

MOM ON AN EMPTY NEST 

Aside from big life advice, Michelle says she often dishes out reminders to her children to the point that they get tired of it. For instance, she would text them to inquire if they’ve been eating greens.

For a mom who’s now empty nesting with her husband, she finds a lot of time and energy to follow up on her children. But she also reveals it gives her enough time to work on herself and figure out what she wants to do next.

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Thinking back over the past decade is a bit of a whirlwind. It’s not easy to take stock of all the ups and downs that go into a single week, let alone more than 500 of them. Ten years ago at this time, our girls were sixth and third graders. Our family hadn’t been in the White House for even a year yet, and Bo was still pretty much a puppy. And though I felt that our family had adjusted well into a wild new reality, I was still a little uncertain about what all the spotlights and pressure would do to us. So looking back, what I’m most filled with is gratitude. A decade like this one was never a part of my plan—not even close. But I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunities, the relationships, and the growth I’ve experienced over these years. I’ve been so lucky to meet so many of you, to hear your stories, and to work together with you on issues that are near and dear to all of our hearts. We’ve got a lot to be proud of. But as I often say, we should be careful not to focus only on our statistics—our biggest accomplishments and best moments—you know, the kinds of things most of us share on social media. Those are important, but we should also be sure to relish the fullness of our stories. That includes the tough moments we persevered through, the messiness that spurred us to make a swerve, and the memories that are still a little bit tender. Though they’re difficult, those moments can be some of the most beautiful parts of our lives. What we often see as a weakness or a failure is often a strength—or a turning point to something better. So today, I’m thankful for all of those moments over the past decade that helped me get to where I am. I’m thankful for the worries and the anxieties, the failures and false starts. And most of all, I’m thankful that after all of it, we came out whole. Now on the other side of this decade, Bo’s got a trusty sidekick named Sunny. We’ve settled into new routines after two terms in the White House. And although the girls are gone away at college now, we’re all back together for the holidays—right where we belong. #DecadeInReview

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Michelle is the bestselling author of ‘Becoming,’ an autobiography that has sold over 10 million copies to date. If you haven’t had enough of her words of wisdom, her book and the interesting life she leads which is detailed in it serves up a lot more.

Michelle is truly an inspiring woman, not just as a mother, but as a wife and public figure. Her daughters are lucky to have her as a role model and source of life advice.    

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