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It's Marie Forleo, and you are watching MarieTV,
the place to be to create a business and life

you love.
Now, if you ever feel that your dreams are
out of reach or maybe even impossible, my

guest today proves that you can achieve anything
you put your heart and your mind to.

Dr. Tererai Trent is one of the world's most
acclaimed voices for women's empowerment,

and Oprah's Favorite guest of all time.
Tererai received her doctorate from Western
Michigan University and teaches courses in

global health at Drexel University.
She's published two highly acclaimed children's
books and is the author of the award-winning,

The Awakened Woman: Remembering and Reigniting
Our Sacred Dreams.

Tererai serves as a president of the The Awakened
Woman LLC, a company dedicated to empowering

women with tools to thrive as they achieve
their dreams.

Tererai, it is such an honor.
It's honestly a dream to have you here.
Thank you.
Thank you for having me.
Thank you.
When we met a few months ago, I felt like
it was soul sisters from a whole other world

and we're like jumping up and down and hugging
each other.

and I was like, "Oh my goodness, can I possible
talk with Tererai?"

And I know I shared this with you, but I feel
like the universe bring us together.

You didn't know, but I had been working on
writing my book, and so I had been researching

your story and looking at it from every angle
because there's one particular chapter that

I wanted to write about you, and then all
of a sudden you showed up in my Twitter feed

and I'm like, "Wait a minute, she even knows
who I am."

I was like, "What is happening here?"
I do.
You are the queen.
You are the queen, my love.
No, you are.
You are.
So I want to start off with something that
you shared in the introduction to your book,

which is amazing.
You shared, "I come from a long line of women
who are forced into a life they never defined

for themselves."
Take us back to those early days in your village
in Zimbabwe.

I want folks to understand the picture of
what life was like for you as a 14-year-old.

You know I always talk about coming from this
long line of generations of women, women who

had been denied the right to their dreams,
the right to their education.

I always visualized my great-grandmother when
she was born, she was born into this race

that she never defined and she was born holding
the baton of poverty, early marriage, illiteracy,

a colonial system that never respected her,
and she's running into this race with this

She ran so fast, she hands over this baton
to my grandmother.

My grandmother grabs that baton of poverty,
illiteracy, she runs, she hands over that

baton to my mother.
My mother grabs that baton in a race that
she never defined because of the circumstances

and she runs, runs, and she hands over that
baton to me.

I never wanted to be part of that baton.
I found myself getting married at a very early
age and having babies.

Before I was even 18, I was a mother of four

Without a high school education, with nothing.
But all I wanted was an education.
And when I talk about this baton of poverty
that's being passed on, I also talk about

the wisdom that is also passed on from generations
before me.

So in our lives, my grandmother used to say
that you have the power to decide whether

you keep on running with that baton of poverty,
the baton of illiteracy, or you run with a

baton of wisdom to re-change and re-shift
this baton, so that you become the one who

breaks the cycle of poverty, early marriage,
lack of education, abuse, and all the ugly

things in our lives.
So when I was hardly 22 years of age, my country,
we had just gained our independence.

Because all along we had been colonized by
the British, and here I was, a mother of four

and my country had gained that independence
and strangers started coming in, Americans,

And these were women who would come to the

And there was this particular woman, she sit
with me and with other women and she asked

me one question that I'll never forget in
my life, "What are your dreams?"

I never knew I'm supposed to have dreams because
I was an abused woman, a silenced woman.

Remember, I had four children.
And actually one of the babies died as an
infant because I failed to produce enough

I was a child myself.
And I'm sitting there, I'm thinking, "Am I
supposed to have dreams in my life?"

And other women started sharing their own
dreams and I was quiet.

She looked at me and she said, "Young woman,
you didn't said anything.

Tell me, what are your dreams?"
I couldn't bring my dreams.
I knew I had these dreams in me, but for some
reason I couldn't because there was so much

noise in my mind.
I had been shaped to believe that I was nothing.
And maybe it was the way she kept on looking
at me, the way she nudged me to say something

and when I opened my mouth, I became a chatterbox,
and I said, "I want to go to America.

I want to have an undergraduate degree.
I want to have a master's and I want to have
a PhD."

There was silence.
The other women looked at me and I could feel
they were saying, "Are you crazy?

How can that be?
You don't even have a high school education."
And I guess there was something about these
American women, when they were coming to my

village, there was this sense of empowerment,
sense of loving thyself, and I wanted that.

I would see them getting into their backpacks
and removing books or papers and they would

look at those books and open and they would
put on their glasses, spectacles, and they

would talk to each other and put back those
spectacles back into their bags.

And thought, wearing glasses was a sign of
education, and I wanted that.

So when I talked about these degrees, I had
these women talking about these degrees, and

I wanted to have an education to change my

And she looked at me and she said, "Yes, it
is achievable.

If you desire those dreams, if you desire
to change your life, yes Tinogona."

Tinogona in my culture, in my language, it
means, "It is achievable."

I never heard of a woman declaring herself
to believe they can achieve their own dreams.

And when I left that place, I ran to my mother
and I said my mother, "I have met someone

who made me believe in my dreams."
My mother looked at me and she said, "Tererai,
if you believe in what this stranger has said

to you and you work hard and you achieve your
dreams, not only are you defining who you

are as a woman, you are defining every life
and generations to come."

And I knew at that moment that my mother was
handing me an inheritance.

My mother knew that I needed to be the one
to break this vicious cycle of poverty that

runs so deep in my family and in the community.
I needed to redefine the baton, so that I
would never pass on this baton to my own girls.

I needed to get this education so my mother
said, "Tererai, write down your dreams and

bury them the same way we bury the umbilical
cord, the bead cord."

I come from a culture that believe so much
in indigenous knowledge, ancient wisdom.

When a child is born, the female elders of
the community, they take that infant, they

snip the umbilical cord, bury that umbilical
cord deep down under the ground with the belief

that when this child grows, wherever they
go, whatever happens in their life, the umbilical

cord would always remind them of their birthplace.
So my mother said, "If you write down your
dreams and you bury those dreams, your dreams

will always remind you of their importance,
that you need to redefine your life, that

you need to break this cycle, that you need
never to pass on this baton, this ugly baton

of poverty, illiteracy, early marriage."
So I wrote down my dreams.
Four: I want to go to America, I want to have
an undergraduate, I want to have a master's

and a PhD.
And I was ready to bury those dreams deep
down under the ground when my mother said

something so profound, which really has changed
my life.

She said, "Tererai, I see you only have four
dreams, personal dreams, but I want you to

remember this.
Your dreams in life will have greater meaning
when they are tied to the betterment of your

And I looked at my mother and I'm thinking,
"What does that even mean?"

My mother repeated, "Your dreams in this life
will have greater meaning when they are tied

to the betterment of your community."
I would end up writing down my fifth dream,
number five.

When I come back I want to improve the lives
of women and girls in my community, so they

don't have to go through what I had gone through
in my life.

I want to come back, create employment platforms
for women.

I want to come back, build schools so that
girls, they won't be marginalized.

And I buried my dreams and it would take me
eight years, and I call those "eight freaking

Yes mama.
To gain my high school diploma, because I
was going through correspondence.

I was an adult.
I couldn't fit into a classroom so I would
do correspondence, and my mother was very

I didn't get enough money to pay for my tuition.
I needed five subjects, classes.
English, math, biology, history, and Bible
knowledge or something.

And we were still under the British system
of education so I will do my correspondence

two subject at a time whenever my mother was
able to sell ground nuts or any produce, she

would give me $20, $40 to register for my
classes, and I would write my exams and send

these papers to a place called Cambridge.
I had no idea what Cambridge is.
And I would wait three to six months for that
brown envelope from Cambridge to come.

And I would open that envelope and I would
realize I have a U, ungraded, I have an F,

And I wrote back to my mother, she would give
me more money and I would write again and

wait another six months.
I open that brown envelope, I have a U, ungraded,
I have a failure.

And I would go back and I would wait and write
and wait and finally, I opened that brown

envelope from Cambridge.
I had a B and I had an A.
I never give up.

Eight years I never give up because I knew
I was on a journey to redefine my life.

I knew I had what it takes to achieve my own
dreams in this life.

And then after eight years, I would find myself
at Oklahoma State University.

And I did my undergraduate in agriculture.
I mean even just pausing there for a moment.
There's so many things to underscore and highlight
that I am so moved by your spirit, and your

vision, and your heart, and your tenacity.
I mean when you buried those beautiful dreams
in the can and you put them under the rock,

you were still in poverty, you were a mom
with an abusive husband.

And you did those correspondence courses for
those eight freaking years, and then to get

yourself over to university here in the States.
As you wrote, you came over with money strapped
to your waist.

And that wasn't even...
It was still a long journey after that.
It was.
So before we go on to that piece of the journey,
I just want to highlight your incredible,

precious mom.
I feel like you and I share something.
My mom was the one that taught me everything
is figureoutable, and your mom was at touchstone

that said, "You deserve to dream."
The wisdom that she had, in terms of your
fifth dream, it feels like that changed everything.

It does.
And I think in many ways she was pointing
to the secret to our success that is not about

the education.
It's not about the personal goals, neither
is it about the personal financial goals,

but it is about how our education and how
our personal goals are connected to the greater

That's what makes humanity, that what makes
who we are as a people.

And so my grandmother would always say to
me and my mother, "You have the power within.

It's not your past that's going to define
who you are, but it's what you believe about

yourself, it's what you believe about your
own expectations, what is it that you expect

from yourself."
And she would tell me and my mother that,
"You go to that place where you buried your

dreams, you visualize the life as you think
it should be."

So I would spend hours and hours sitting in
that same place, visualizing myself getting

into an airplane.
I'd never been in an airplane in my life,
and I'd never seen one.

The only airplane that I knew were the helicopters
that would fly during the war.

Because I was born and raised in a war-torn

And I would visualize myself sitting into
that helicopter, imagining myself flying to

this place called America, and I would see
these tall buildings.

And my grandmother would say, "Feel those
mental images, see those buildings."

And I would see them and I would even smell
the life that I wanted.

So when I got onto that airplane, there was
this déjà vu, "I think I've been here before."

Even when I arrived on campus, I felt I've
been in this place before, because I had spent

so much of my time wanting to change my life
and so much of my time visualizing this life

that I wanted, visualizing this life that
I was not going to pass on this baton to my

girls, and I wanted to change it all.
So when I started my classes, I found pure

I was always the oldest student in any class
that I've taken and sometimes older than the

professor herself or himself.
But I never cared because I knew I had the
power to change my life.

And your life, when you got here, was still
wrought with so much challenge.

I remember when I first learned about your
story in Half the Sky from Nicholas Kristof

and Sheryl WuDunn, you were feeding yourself
out of trash cans, your children were cold,

the husband that was abusive for a period
of time, he was still here.

You know because Zimbabwe, where I was coming
from, the weather is different, and there's

always this community cohesion.
You can leave your kids with the neighbors
and what have you.

And now I'm in a different country and I didn't
have a scholarship.

I would work three jobs to feed the children
and still taking classes.

I remember when my kids, when they arrived
in the US, three months down the road as they

were brushing their teeth, I saw their gums
were bleeding and I knew they were missing

fruits and vegetables.
Back home, you can grow your fruits and vegetables
and they grow because it is the tropics.

And in America, fruits and vegetables are
a little bit expensive.

So I would many, many times would go to bed

And I went back to the university and I said
you know, "I have a dream, but I'm about to

give up."
I can't see my children suffering.
It's one thing for me to have this great dream,
but it's another to see my kids suffering.

And fortunate enough, the university said,
"There are local stores here, I hope they

don't mind or you don't mind if they give
you leftover fruits and vegetables."

And I said, "No, I don't mind."
So we went to this local store, the manager
looks at me and said, "Oh, no, no.

In this country, if we give you this leftover
fruits and vegetables and if anything happens

to your kids after they have consumed them,
you'll end up suing."

And I said, "I have no dime to sue anyone.
Please, please I need to feed the children."
And the store manager says, "Okay, here's
a deal.

You make sure that...
I'm not going to hand over the fruits to you.
I'm going to put them, pack them in the cardboard
box, and I'm going to place the cardboard

box outside the store, near the trash can.
Make sure that at 4 o'clock everyday, you
come and pick that box.

If you're late, we are going to throw the
box into the trash can."

99% I was late to that cardboard box because
I had to work three jobs, take care of five

kids, and I would find the box straight dumped
into the trash can.

Some of the fruits have already spilled over
and I would collect everything, wash, and

go and feed my children, and ask myself, "Who
am I to even complain that I live in a trailer

house in Oklahoma."
It's a dilapidated trailer house.
There's no air condition.
Everything is just falling apart.
Who am I to complain when I know there are
thousands of women and individuals that I

see every day on the streets in Western countries,
who am I to complain?

And who am I even to say, "I'm feeding my
children from trash cans."

When I know where I'm coming from, in Sub-Saharan
Africa, millions of homeless kids are feeding

from trash cans that no one is washing, at
least the American trash can, someone washes

Those thoughts grounded me because I knew
at the end of the tunnel, despite its darkness,

there was light.
And I knew I had the solutions in me.
So I graduated my Master's in Plant Pathology
and told myself I wasn't going for my PhD.

I needed to work.
It was too much.
I needed to work.
I needed to give better life for my children.
And I applied for a job, got accepted at some
place in Arkansas, Little Rock. and I went

for the interview.
And one day, I'm walking in the corridor and
I meet this woman and she looks at me and

she said, "I think I know you."
And I am thinking, "I have met many Americans
and many white women.

I don't know."
She said, "I really think I know you."
And I am thinking, "Gosh.
Who is this woman?"
And then it dawned on me that, oh my gosh!
That's the very woman that I had met some
14 years back in my village.

The one who had inspired me to believe in
my dreams.

The one who had never seen the povertness
in me, the smallness in me, my giant, my champion,

the one who said, "Yes, Tinogona, you can
achieve your dreams if you believe in your

And that was Jo Luck.
And now, she is the CEO and president of Heifer

This organization that had just employed me.
And I am thanking the universe.
The universe has a way to honor our dreams
if only we believe and we become determined

and work hard towards our own goals.
And so my first trip home, I went to that
place where I had buried my dreams, dug them

up, and I could see that list, and check going
to America, check undergraduate, check master's.

And I could see two dreams still looking at
me and saying, "So what?"

And I said, "I have the solution for you."
And I reburied those dreams and came back
to the United States of America and enrolled

myself at Western Michigan University for
my PhD.

And I remember the day that I graduated and
I was walking that podium to receive my PhD,

that paper that now says, "You are now a PhD

You are now Dr. Trent."
And I realized it had taken me 20 years from
the day that I buried my dreams to the day

that I was now going to receive my PhD.
And as I was walking that podium to receive
that paper, I really felt like a lawyer who

had rested her case to the world to say, "If
we believe in our dreams, yes we can achieve."

But also to say, "If we believe in the dreams
of others and create platforms for the opportunities,

yes, they can achieve their dreams."
Because as I reflect back, it wasn't because
of my intelligence, but it was more because

of the opportunities that I had been given
in life.

And I think that drives everything that I
do today, to realize that I stand on the shoulders

of others, I stand on the shoulders of giants,
of champions and I have a moral obligation,

a sacred obligation to allow young women,
to allow girls, to allow individuals, to stand

on my shoulders because if it wasn't for the
shoulders of others, I wouldn't even be sitting

here with Marie Forleo.
I can't even, mama.
I'm going to run over and hug you right now.
You talk about that great hunger and I know
there are so many people watching right now.

I was talking with a woman earlier today who––and
I was thinking about the beauty of your book––where

the global silencing of women's voices, where
they don't feel they have that permission

to dream, and whether it is from familial
trauma, sexual trauma, cultural trauma of

not knowing that they have a right to dream.
And that hunger inside of them is so healing.
When I look at you, you have been an inspiration
to me for so long.

And just the beauty of your words and what
you bring to people.

What do you have to say to anyone watching
right now?

If they are, first of all, I know they're
going to be deeply moved and inspired by your

story, but if they themselves are having trouble
identifying that great hunger in their hearts.

What would you say?
You know we all have hunger, some they call
it passion, but I prefer hunger because I

realize there are two kinds of hungers in
our lives.

There is the little hunger.
The little hunger is all about, "I want it
now," immediate gratification.

But the great hunger, the greatest of all
hungers, which is the hunger that we all have

is hunger for a meaningful life.
How do you then tap into that hunger?
Because it is within us.
You ask yourself, "What breaks my heart?
What breaks my heart?"
Because it is in those moments of our brokenness,
in those moments that we realize that it's

not our past, it's not the challenges in front
of us.

Once we realize that we have the power to
find that solution within us, we begin to

hear the stirring in our own heart, pointing
us to something greater than who we are, and

we find the answer to that great hunger.
But we have to be more intentional.
One of the things I love about your book is
there's so many practical exercises.

By the way you guys, The Awakened Woman, this
is the paperback version and I've got my hardcover

version as well right here.
If you all don't have Tererai's book, you
must, must get it.

Get it for yourself, get it for every woman
you know because it is filled with these practical

And what I also love is the indigenous wisdom
and the sacred wisdom and the rituals that

you embed in this, that make it yet about
so much more than just our small hungers.

Because what I have done...
You know I have created these Awakened Woman
series online workshops for women or for anyone.

And I have taken into consideration the indigenous
knowledge because who we are, what we do,

to a larger extent whether we know it or not,
it has been passed to us by the wisdom seekers,

the wisdom whisperers and the storytellers
because they become our role model.

We take that and we plan accordingly because
we have that wisdom with us.

And I've also considered the daily rituals
because when we are not grounded in who are

in what I call "coming home to ourselves,"
we can only come home to ourselves if we practice

daily rituals that will ground us.
And when we become grounded, no fear, no doubt,
no "I could have done that, I could have…”

disappear because we know we have what to
takes to achieve our goals in life.

I've also considered research, taking into
consideration all the work that others have

done and look at it and say, every businesswoman,
every businessman, every artist, creative

director that I know of, they are guided by
research and they're also guided by knowing

that if they have their goals written down
with intention, they can visualize the future

they deserve.
And they are more likely to be successful
than those who are just doing projects or

programs or having their dreams that are not
even written down, or those who don't even

research on the work that they want to do.
So I truly believe that bringing research
and bringing indigenous knowledge and daily

rituals is what's going to ground us, is what's
going to move humanity to the next phase of

our life and transform everyone around us.
I believe that too, my love.
It's so sacred and it's so beautiful.
So one of the things that I think is so incredible
that I want to share with you.

You know the takeaway from the book about
sharing our dreams with others.

And when you have that courage to share your
dreams with others, and your team actually

shared with us that there are six young women
from your Matau Secondary School, right?

That one of the schools that you support and
we heard that there are six young women who

are the first to graduate and go on to college
and university.

So I just wanted to share something with you.
Very much like you, we are extremely committed
to girls' education.

And your team told us that these young women
might need some help attending their first

year of university.
So on behalf of myself and our community and
Team Forleo, we will be paying their first

year's tuition for all of the women, so that
they can get their start.

We love you and we appreciate you and we want
your ripple to continue, so you can keep passing

that baton because you are a light on this
world, and you are such a beacon of inspiration

to everyone who has the honor to hear your
story and to hear your beautiful words.

And we want to continue to support you to
do your good work.

Oh my gosh.
I have no words.
We love you.
May I?
Of course.
Are you kidding me?
We love you so much and who you are and everything
that you do and these beautiful six young

women, who thanks to your example, take themselves
and their dreams seriously.

We want to help you make bigger ripples.
Oh my goodness.
And in fact, there are seven girls.
We got it.
And all of them, they're going to be the first
ones to go into a college or a university.

The very first ones.
All of them, their mothers and their parents,
they can hardly read.

This is truly helping these young girls to
break that cycle of poverty.

I come from a region where everyday 39,000
girls get married before they turn the age

of 18.
I was there.
There's a lot of silencing of young women,
not only in my community, but this is a global

And to have you come in and say, "I want to
make a difference to these girls."

What you have done is redefine and re-shift
the baton that they are going to pass on to

their children and to their grandkids.
And for that, I am grateful.
I am grateful to you.
It is an honor and a privilege to sit with
you and we will continue to support you and

your work.
And I want to say because we talked about
it, because you know mama is a businesswoman

too, for anyone that's watching right now,
if you want to get some free lessons from

The Awakened Women series, you can just text
MarieTV to 444-999, and you will get free

lessons from this brilliant Dr. Trent about
how to awaken your sacred dreams and bring

them into life.
I cannot thank you enough for following your
dreams, for telling your stories in this book

so that we can share it and open up even more
minds and hearts to what's possible, and I

hope that you and I will continue to be lifelong

And I adore you.
Thank you so much and you know thank you for...
Because you know Oprah donated 1.5 million
years back.

And in many ways, what you have done is to
say, we uplift and carry on this dream that

Oprah Winfrey started.
And I am honored to partner with you.
I am.
And I think Oprah will just be so happy to
know that what she started is now blooming,

and the dream is becoming much more bigger.
Because we can actually see these young women
carrying their books on campus, achieving

their dreams and redefining their own life.
That's right.
Thank you.
Thank you.
Thank you.
Now, Tererai and I would love to hear from

So this was a really beautiful conversation,
so many insights, but we're curious, what

is the insight that really struck your heart
and why and what can you do to take action

on it right now?
Leave a comment below and let us know.
Now, as always, the most wonderful conversations
happened over at MarieForleo.com, so head

on over there and leave a comment now.
Once you're there, be sure to subscribe to
our email list and become an MF Insider.

You'll get instant access to an audio I created
called How To Get Anything You Want, plus

you'll get some exclusive content, some special
giveaways, and insights from me that I just

don't share anywhere else.
Stay on your game and keep going for your
dreams because the world needs that very special

gift that only you have.
Thank you so much for watching, and we'll
catch you next time on MarieTV.

Are you tired of talking into an empty void?
Are you ready for more sales, more clients,
and more raving fans?

Take our free seven-day writing class
at thecopycure.com.
Tererai and I are doing a dance.
What kind of dance?
It's the Tinogona dance.
Tinogona dance.
The figureoutable dance.
I love you so much.


如何完成不可能的夢想 (Dr Tererai Trent: How To Achieve Your ImpossiblE Dreams)

242 分類 收藏
Ken Song 發佈於 2019 年 3 月 5 日
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