Irene Worth: Have A Life That Matters

Irene Worth in The Cherry Orchard at Lincoln Center, 1977. Photo courtesy of Photofest.

From Artistic Suicide

I would say to anyone, living anywhere and doing anything: Dedicate yourself to a full and giving life. There is so little time given to us, and so many opportunities to enrich ourselves and others. This is why we--certainly I--become so obsessed with time: One is always trying to outrun and outwit it.

Don't think about outcomes; think about effects. Improve a life when you see trouble; improve a mood when one is bad. Read and think and pray and listen. I used to become depressed, and instead of sitting around and thinking about how down I was, or poor, or unloved, or unwanted, I began to study. I would study so many things: art and music and languages and history and religion and philosophy. Lose yourself in discovering things, and then help others come out of the muck by sharing what you've learned.

Every day should reveal that we are all getting better and reaching higher.

Eat and drink well. Move among people. Be so busy in enriching your life that when the call comes that you have work, you'll be momentarily annoyed that you have to stop what you're doing, and then go to work this richer person who can continue to give.

Try to have a wonderful and rich life, and the career comes. Try to always push yourself and sell yourself for the career, and the life never happens.

Have a life that matters. Everything else follows.

Interview with Irene Worth

©2013 by James Grissom


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