Gay Hendricks, Ph.D., has served for more than 35 years as one of the major contributors to the fields of relationship transformation and bodymind therapies. Along with his wife, Dr. Kathlyn Hendricks, Gay is the co-author of many bestsellers, including Conscious Loving, Spirit-Centered Relationships.
He is also the author of 32 books, including The Corporate Mystic, Conscious Living, Five Wishes and The Big Leap. He has appeared on more than 500 radio and television shows, including OPRAH, CNN, CNBC, 48 HOURS and others.
MindBodyGreen: How do you start your day? Do you have a morning routine?
Gay Hendricks: I'm an early riser, usually wake up around 5 or so. Then I stretch for a while and meditate for around a half hour. Then I usually write for a couple of hours.
MBG: You lost 100 lbs, quit smoking and have never looked back. Please tell us more about your "aha" moment that lead you to make the decision to lose weight and quit smoking?
GH: I had a tough wake-up call. I slipped on some ice in 1969 and smacked my head on the ground. It knocked me out just enough so that I had a vision of how my weight was a way of killing myself at an early age, just as my father had done at 32. He was obese and a heavy smoker, just as I was doing. When I came back to full consciousness, I made a vow to live my own life, have my own body, live out my own destiny, rather than copying his pattern unconsciously.
MBG: Tell us more about your latest book, The Big Leap and "The Upper Limit Problem" that so many of us have? Why is the message more important than ever?
GH: It's important because the world is full of potential geniuses who can create a new future for humanity by taking their Big Leaps. We need it very much right now.
MBG: What advice would you give to someone who's just begun the process of self-examination and personal growth?
GH: Think of it as a lifelong path that's essential, like breathing or eating well, not as a destination you're trying to get to.
MBG: You've had the opportunity to meet some incredible leaders, has one person been particularly inspiring? Is there someone you haven't met but would love to meet?
GH: I've met the Dalai Lama a few times, and each time has been special to me. I also had the opportunity to spend some time back in the 60s with a couple of amazing musicians, Jimi Hendrix and Jimmy Page. This was before Hendrix became really famous, and a couple of years before Page founded Led Zeppelin. What I took away from being with them was the absolute passion each of them had. Every moment and every cell in their bodies seemed to be about making music. It inspired me to find something I felt that passionate about, and I'm glad I did.
MBG: What's the best way for someone to attract a loving and conscious relationship? What is the easiest way for someone to find out if a relationship is good for them?
GH: The best way is to take your focus off finding the perfect lover and put it on finding the perfect love inside yourself. Then, you'll be attracting the right kind of mate.
MBG: Through the commercial success of The Secret, the Law of Attraction has gained a lot of media attention. What is the most common misconception that people now have of The Law of Attraction?
GH: I'm glad that people in the mainstream are learning about the Law of Attraction. The Secret did a good job of teaching the basics, but I think it gave people the misconception that it's about manifesting new SUVs and beach houses. The Secret also left out a couple of key issues, like the need for practicing impeccable integrity along with the Law of Attraction.
MBG: What are you reading right now? Do you have any favorite authors?
GH: I'm a voracious reader of just about everything. People send me a couple of hundred books every year, to ask me to give them a blurb for their book cover. I can only give a few blurbs, but I end up reading or at least skimming most of the books. So, I keep up with what other spirituality/psychology authors are doing that way. I also love a good mystery or thriller. Michael Connelly is great, also Elmore Leonard. I read both of the new ones by those guys this summer.
MBG: Do you have a favorite getaway? A favorite place to vacation or travel to?
GH: I live in my own little part of paradise, thanks to the magic of my wife, Kathlyn (also known as Katie.) She's an amazing creator of environments, in addition to being a great teacher, healer and author. I travel quite a bit for business purposes and teaching, so I end up in quite a few great places every year in Hawaii, Europe and Asia. Even if I've been in Maui or Fiji or some other exotic place, it's always my home in Ojai that makes me go "Ahhhhh."
MBG: What is your favorite way to relax/exercise?
GH: I like to take walks with Katie. I also play golf at a course close to my house. I'd call it more "golfing meditation," lest anyone think I'm a "serious" golfer.
MBG: Favorite guilty indulgence?
GH: I have plenty of indulgences but don't feel guilty about any of them! I might be able to work up a little guilt for eating a little too much Haagen Dazs Vanilla Bean ice cream, but I haven't found that guilt makes anything taste better.
MBG: If it was your Last Supper, what would your last meal be? Where would the meal be? Who would you like to be there (past/present/future)?
GH: Katie would make one of her Caesar salads and wonderful soups. We'd eat it together, with our cat Lucy nearby looking on.
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Photo courtesy of the author