Ariana Huffington is a lady with multiple talents, Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Huffington Post, author of multiple books (The Sleep Revolution, Thrive, Pigs at the Trough…and many more), prolific columnist in the USA, radio show host, Ted Talker and occasional actress – it is no wonder she ranks number 61 in Forbes 100 most powerful women in the world.
But what about her early life and career? Born in Athens, Greece, she moved to the UK when she turned 16 to attend Cambridge Girton College. Already embracing a different country and culture, she then became the 3rd female President of Cambridge Union, this is an early indication of the powerful woman she would become.
From appearing as a panellist in UK TV series Face the Music, she met Bernard Levin who was a respected journalist, writer and BBC reporter and from this love he gave Ariana editorial assistance and encouraged her to start writing as a career. Moving to New York in 1973 and continued to write, especially around the Women’s Liberation Movement, her writings were not always complimentary though and rather than joining them she criticised them: “Women’s Lib claims that the achievement of total liberation would transform the lives of all women for the better; the truth is that it would transform only the lives of women with strong lesbian tendencies.”
In the USA, Ariana rose to prominence during her then husband’s early 90’s Senate bid – he wasn’t successful, but after this she continued the political career path running for the Governor of California in 2003. She aligned herself to topical situations, standing up to NATO, hosting weekly radio panel shows and appearing on TV adverts.
After dropping out of the running, only two years later she launched The Huffington Post, kept her profile in the media and continuing to write for major publications. Only six years later AOL brought the Post for $315 million! Ariana is still the Editor-in-Chief to this day but there are some definite recurring trends in her life that contributed to her major success, I have highlighted some below:
1.Ariana definitely moved with the movers and the shakers
people that she could learn from, who pushed her and showed her different sides to life. Known as the Sir Edmund Hillary of social climbing it’s not hard to see why. It is important to surround yourself with people who ‘get it’, who will encourage you and offer you different experiences. Soak these experiences in like Ariana did and see your opportunities within them, go for it.
2.Experience of different countries and cultures
This has been a big part of Ariana’s life. From new experiences to a widened vocabulary and language base (very important for journalists), travel broadened Ariana’s horizon’s and had a positive impact on her career and life. Make sure you take every opportunity to travel as far and wide as you can, but also don’t dismiss immigrating to a different country; only living in a country can give you insight into different lifestyles.
3.Ariana’s top tip for success? Get more sleep!
Yep you heard me, and plenty of successful people agree with her. You can’t fire on all cylinders during the day if you are dreaming of your bed, she’s not saying you shouldn’t go and network with your colleagues of an evening – but leave before it will start impacting your time in the hay. Watch Ariana’s Ted Talk here to learn more about the happiness a good night’s sleep can bring.
Ariana is a woman who embraces life and new experiences with both arms open wide; a busy schedule keeps her presence in the media and she is internationally respected as a journalist. So next time you click onto an article on Huffington Post, remember the woman behind it and her extraordinary career.