The GenHERation “5 Questions With” Series features our exclusive interviews with the most powerful women in the world to provide you with actionable advice on how to navigate your career path.
Arianna Huffington is the founder and CEO of Thrive Global, founder of The Huffington Post, and author of 15 books.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you graduated from college?
The advice I would give to my younger self is very, very simple: Stop burning the candle at both ends and renew your estranged relationship with sleep. You will be more productive, more effective, more creative, and more likely to enjoy your life.
Which college class best prepared you for your professional career?
It wasn’t a class, but my involvement with the Cambridge Union debating society led to one of the biggest opportunities of my life: my first book. And if any GenHERation members would like to flex their writing muscle and write for Thrive, we would love to feature your voice in our special section for students, Thrive Global on Campus. If you’re in college, you can apply to represent your university as a Campus Editor-at-Large here. And if you’re in high school (18 or younger), you can email firstname.lastname@example.org with permission from a parent or guardian.
What is the go-to question you ask interview candidates?
I always want to know what people want to do in five years. I love asking people how they recharge and get themselves into the metaphorical eye of the hurricane — that centered place of strength, wisdom and peace that we all have inside ourselves.
What is the biggest risk you have taken?
Leaving The Huffington Post and launching Thrive. As Sheryl Sandberg told me, you just have to take a deep breath, close your eyes and jump.
What is your genius?
Fearlessness: my mother brought me up to believe that there was nothing I should be afraid to try while at the same time making it clear that she would love me not one iota less if I failed. She used to say, “failure is not the opposite of success; it’s a stepping stone to success.”