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What we can learn from Sharon Stone’s life-threatening experience

Sharon Stone survived a brain aneurysm and told her story to The Hollywood Reporter. As we head into a new year, we all become a year older, we’re all probably a bit heavier after the holidays and many of us are resolving to incorporate personal improvement. Here are our favorite inspirational quotes from Stone’s story that will give us a valuable attitude adjustment for the new year.


“The Dalai Lama says, ‘No matter what you say, that’s what you are!’ The truth is upon us. You can be a walking mess of lies, but you will look like a walking mess of lies.” We’re guessing that’s not a good look, and Stone should know what looks good and what doesn’t — she looks amazing at 56.

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Stone refuses to lie about her age, which is what the quote about honestly is in reference to — but her attitude on aging is something we should adopt and teach our daughters (and sons). Having survived a brain aneurysm, she’s thrilled to be 56, because she got a firsthand look at the alternative.

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Stone explains, “I bled in my brain for nine days. I spent two years learning to walk and talk again. I came home from that stroke stuttering, couldn’t read for two years. I was in an ICU for nine days, and the survival rate for what I went through is very low. I don’t need someone to make me feel bad about growing older. I’ll tell you what makes you feel bad: when you think you might not.”

She makes a valid point. Aging isn’t always fun, and it’s probably less fun to age in the spotlight, but it beats the tar out of the alternative.

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Getting the job

Stone told The Hollywood Reporter, “I go to an audition or meeting and think, ‘Even if this part wasn’t written for me or a female, I might be the best one to play the judge or the policeman.’ Yes, I’ve gotten parts that way. I’ve said, ‘I think the film is too male-heavy. You don’t have a woman in it. It would really benefit the film.’ And yes, I’ve found people respond well to that. I’ve said: ‘It would benefit you to consider me.'”

“It would benefit you to consider me.” That is job interview gold.

Keeping the job

Once Stone gets the job, she prides herself on not being viewed as a self-absorbed, celebrity mess. “Leave your s*** at home. Don’t go on a set and be a neurotic mess. Most people walk into a room and all they see is themselves: their fears, their desires, it never stops. Pull your s*** together! Walk into the room and give yourself three minutes to see the other person. ‘How are you? What’s happening with your world?’ As soon as you see how they’re doing, you can get on the same page, and the person sees you in return. Then it’s not about being 22 or 36 or 66 or black or white or Hispanic. It’s about the human soul I’m sitting with.” Pretty powerful stuff, don’t you think?

Exercise and discipline

How does Stone stay in shape? “To me, discipline is a kind of freedom. I belong to 24 Hour Fitness and go four or five times a week. People don’t want to see a fat Sharon Stone, do they? I know my brand!”

Stone’s attitude about discipline is inspiring. In the piece, Stone says it took her two years to walk and talk again, so as with aging, her attitude suggests that working out is a privilege. Now that she can walk again, she gets to work out.


Seven years ago, Stone kicked the bottle. She reveals she didn’t drink much to begin with, but that she wanted to “get cut” like Madonna and learned that Madonna doesn’t drink. Stone first went three months without alcohol and noticed that people were trying to force it on her once she was several months into her alcohol-free life.

“People became uncomfortable and aggressive. So after eight or nine months, I started telling people I was sober. And the clarity I started to have about myself and others was astounding. I’ve watched actors and actresses go off the rails with drugs and alcohol for years. Particularly when it all happens so fast when you’re young. I want to feel all my feelings, to have every feeling a person can have and never not feel it.” Three months, huh? That’s a tempting thing to consider in the coming year, isn’t it?

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