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Tamron Hall’s Wellness Inspo? Kendrick Lamar

 Black and white photo of Tamron Hall with copy that says "Doing Well".
Black and white photo of Tamron Hall with copy that says "Doing Well".

Tamron Hall may be one of the most organized people on the planet. In addition to hosting a successful talk show, which has won two Daytime Emmy Awards and counting, she's written two novels. The latest, entitled Watch Where They Hide, was just released this week, and draws from Hall's lengthy career in journalism. Amidst her eventful professional life, Hall is also a devoted partner and mother. A master at time management, she stresses that when it comes to staying on top of both her health and career, balance—and a healthy dose of spontaneity—is key.

"Perspective is big for me right now," she says. "There are ways of relaxing that you will need at different times. A hot bath may work on a Thursday, but you may need something more another day. I think a lot of times, people think, 'Okay, if I drink matcha every day for six weeks, suddenly, voilà, my body will feel great. I will be able to run a marathon.' It doesn't work like that. It takes adjusting."

Watch Where They Hide: a Jordan Manning Novel (jordan Manning Series Book 2)
Watch Where They Hide: a Jordan Manning Novel (jordan Manning Series Book 2)

Watch Where They Hide: A Jordan Manning Novel

Like many parents, she found that one of the greatest adjustments to her routine, wellness and otherwise, was having a child. Her son Moses, who is now four, made her shift her priorities. She stresses, however, that she hasn't had to sacrifice her career or an ounce of her sense of self to become a mother.

"I'm always very clear that my womanhood and my motherhood are not the same," she maintains. "I've been a woman, I've identified as a woman since day one of this journey, but motherhood is only four years in, so I still have a lot of friends who aren't Moms, just like I have a lot of new friends who are. Just finding the joy in both my womanhood and my motherhood has been just such a great place to exist right now."

Below, Hall sheds light on that ongoing journey to wellness, diving deep into everything from transcendental meditation to a hilariously failed bikini wax.

The wellness trend I haven't tried yet but want to:
The wellness trend I haven't tried yet but want to:

Matcha. I don't want to try it, but I'm tempted. I don't, but I do. I'm pulled in. My executive producer, Quiana Burns, is team matcha everything. And there is a place not very far from where I live that specializes in matcha drinks. I've not tried anything, but I am tempted. I think I need to get on board. I think a taste factor might play a role.

A wellness practice you swear by that some might find
A wellness practice you swear by that some might find

I do transcendental meditation. I think there are some people who might find that a little intimidating, because it requires two sessions, about 20 minutes each day. And I think in general meditation is something that people believe they can't do because the first time you ever tried it or thought about it, you sat down and then your mind started to go through your grocery list and all the other distractions that enter the mind. It can leave someone feeling that they're not capable of slowing their mind down. And with transcendental meditation, it's quite the opposite. You are taught to accept the noise that's going to come in. This style of meditation does not set the goal of complete and utter silence, especially as you start out.

Fifteen years ago on New Year's Eve, my friend who was living in New York at the time said, 'Let's do something different.' I was living a very chaotic life, and not in a negative way, but work was just really extreme. I felt that I was moving at this really intense pace. I was looking for a way to find balance and I found it with transcendental meditation.

No matter how hard you try, you just can't get into:
No matter how hard you try, you just can't get into:

I am not team green. My son is four years old, and I'm really trying to get him to eat something past zucchini bread, but I identify greatly with a child who is not ready to completely launch in with the green. I was late to the party as well.

Green is the color of life. It's vibrant. It's the color that inspires us to walk outside, but for some reason when it's time to actually ingest the green, I'm a little slow to the party.

Your ideal wellness routine:
Your ideal wellness routine:

I don't have a daily wellness routine because I have such a tight day. I have a very—I don't like to say it's orderly, but I understand why people describe it that way—routine. My father was in the military, and he said to me, 'You should pick out everything on Sunday night that you're going to wear for the entire week, down to your underwear.' And the theory behind that that is it's one less thing to occupy your mind during the weekday.

For me, taking things off the table that are easy layouts helps me be a productive person. I wake up at the same time every morning. I have my same cup of coffee. I've laid out with my stylist all of the things that we're wearing for the week ahead. I lay out all of my son's clothes and his meals are mapped out—breakfast, lunch, and dinner—a week ahead. And that allows me to have this structured, productive life. That said, I say all of that to make the point that I don't like regimen, because I do still need that freedom to know that I can allow for the unexpected and spontaneous in my day. You need that extra spice and light of life.

Low-brow feel-good hack:
Low-brow feel-good hack:

I mask my face every day. Going back to the idea of a routine, that’s something that I’ve done every day since I was in my 20s. It was a tip given to me by a wonderful woman who owned one of the only Black- and female-owned day spas at the time, in Chicago. It was called Bettye O, and she had quite a following when I was a young reporter in Chicago. And she said, 'I don’t care what you do, but mask every day. When people tell you how young you look when you’re in your 50s, you’ll thank me.' She said, 'It doesn’t matter what the mask costs, as long as it’s hydrating,' and I started masking. That little beat that I take for myself takes me back to how valuable good advice is. So every time I put on a mask, I laugh and think that that’s why good advice is good to hold onto. And I happen to use an eminence mask that has eucalyptus, so that’s a very refreshing and calming beat to my day.

High-brow feel-good splurge:
High-brow feel-good splurge:

Good champagne. It’s wonderful way to get into a hot bath with a lot of bubbles and a glass of champagne, making myself feel like I’m in an episode of a soap opera from the '80s—I don't know, but a nice bottle of champagne is my splurge.

We also take great family vacations. Last year, we were in Umbria, Italy in this sort of castle in the middle of a wooded area in Umbria. We do really great family reset vacations every summer that, considering the way I grew up—not from an affluent family, but a wonderfully loving family—are probably splurges. But I feel that we’ve earned them.

The best way to describe your wellness vibe:
The best way to describe your wellness vibe:

Evolving. Before my son, my friends would call me the queen of the nap. I worked morning TV my entire career. So up until now, my wake-up time was around 4:30 in the morning. And then I'd come home and do a quick workout, take a nap, and have a reset for what the second part of my day had in store. That could be something as simple as having dinner with friends, attending an event, or hosting an event. Now that I have a four-year-old, the life of the napper that I once was no longer exists.

But to go to the core of the question, I think my wellness is like the Kendrick Lamar song—It's a Don't Kill My Vibe wellness routine, meaning that rather than priority, I view life through a lens of perspective.

Who you look to for advice:
Who you look to for advice:

I happen to have a phenomenal job where we focus on interviews with amazing women—some who live their lives in the spotlight and others who don’t—who all come to my talk show dropping gems. Halle Berry just re-posted an interview we did two years ago about caring what other people think. Sabrina Elba was just on my show, and she talked about her life and her desire to make sure that people see her as an empowered woman versus a woman who is married to a very famous man. At the same time, I just got off the phone with my mother a few seconds ago, and we were having a very intimate conversation about health and life and wellness.

I find advice from many places. Marie Claire, for instance—I’m sure I have issues that are tucked away that are from the '80s! I really find wisdom from so many sources. I think my show has been able to withstand and beat the odds and remain because we really tap into: Where do you find your inspiration? Where’s the great conversation? Where is that wisdom? And I find it in so many places.

The wellness apps we'd find on your phone:
The wellness apps we'd find on your phone:

Voice memo is my weapon. That’s how I wrote my novel. I mastered the art of waking myself up when I'm sleeping. That’s probably not healthy, but if you’re a writer, you know that those ideas creep into your head while you sleep. It’s almost a dream-like process, but you’re semi-conscious and when you wake up and you’ve forgotten that idea, and you're like, 'Oh gosh, I had a dream. I’ve made this mental note while I was asleep and now I don’t remember it.' As a writer, I now make myself wake up. I get my phone and hit the voice memo, and some days I wake up to three or four things that I’ve said into my phone that I didn't remember. And that’s how I wrote a lot of my novel, Watch Where They Hide. I've kept a written diary since the third grade, and now even that little app is a little bit of an audio diary for me. It's being able to have something on hand to create and also to reflect.

When you need to reset:
When you need to reset:

I love to cook. I'll go online and think about something I want to prepare, and order [the ingredients] and decide I’m going to get my slowcooker or whatever it is. I cook a wide variety of things, and for me that is a form of escape that also lends itself to something productive, so I’m allowed to escape into this recipe but also create this beautiful meal.

I also enjoy my time with my friends, and I say all the time that I could have the best restaurant reservation in the world but just sitting down with a glass of wine on the sofa with my friends, laughing and talking, is medicinal for me. I live a very noisy life—I have an earpiece in my ear for hours a day and I’m on Zoom calls, like the rest of us. That can be a noise pollution level that we don’t recognize, even if you live in a rural area—noise pollution doesn’t necessarily mean the honk of a horn or the noise of a city. So, I try to tamp down the noise pollution and replace it with pleasant conversations with friends and family. That, to me, is a big reset.

Your current state of mind:
Your current state of mind:

Betting on yourself is the advice that I would give to anyone, including my younger self. I've been able to now see the great benefit of authenticity and the great desire, I think we all have, to find what makes us special; what makes us unique. Our next chapters in all of our lives, I think, are the best chapters.

Your mental health focus right now:
Your mental health focus right now:

My call of action to myself is to stay light. Of course, I take many, many things seriously all day long, but there's something beautiful about imagining yourself walking and existing in an effortless manner. Think about when you see someone who's very fashionable and you say, 'Gosh, she looks so effortless.' Even though that person may have planned that outfit 10 days prior, there's something that we all gravitate to when it comes to feeling the lightness of not effort-ing so much.

When and where you feel the happiest:
When and where you feel the happiest:

I am my happiest when my son has snuck into my room, and I wake up and I just rub his skin and smell his hair and can't believe that this is a part of my journey. I was a late-to-the-party mom, as I like to say. It wasn't something that I thought was going to happen. I hoped it would happen, and I get why so many young women have come to me and say, 'I'm inspired by the fact that you had a child late in life.'

A funny little wellness story about you:
A funny little wellness story about you:

I tried to wax myself years ago, but I could not bring myself to pull the wax. I called my cousin and she counted me down on FaceTime, like, 'Three, two, one, pull.' And I couldn't pull. 10 minutes in, I couldn't pull, and the wax was getting harder and harder. It was not good. My hand just could not go. I'm shivering right now.

Wellness advice you've received that...isn't great:
Wellness advice you've received that...isn't great:

When I was 45, someone said to me, ‘Never tell your age,’ and I believe that’s terrible advice. I think the idea was that my value would increase if people thought I was younger, and that that would somehow turn into a better career and better opportunities. I’m sure in their mind, they processed that as career wellness advice—that you’ll stay in the game longer and you’ll be more valuable if you don’t tell your age. And I think that’s bad advice.

The thing you'd tell your younger self about wellness
The thing you'd tell your younger self about wellness

I would go back to 27 years old. I would say stay out later. Dance as late as possible. Don't close the club, but leave a little bit before it closes, but go to the party. Go to the party. Don't worry about work tomorrow because it'll work itself out.