Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • >>Alex: So hi everyone, welcome to our Authors@Google series. Today we have Gabby Bernstein. She's

  • a, according to the New York Times Sunday Style section, she's our next generation guru,

  • a motivational speaker, a life coach and an author. Her new book is Spirit Junkie, which

  • you can get for a Google discount of $10 right over there and you can take it away Gabby.

  • >>Gabrielle Bernstein: Thanks Alex. Hi everybody. [audience murmurs response] Thank you so much

  • for coming out. I got word this afternoon that it is assessment time at Google, so hopefully

  • I can calm any nerves that might be happening during assessment time and help you raise

  • your own personal assessments today. [giggles] But thank you for coming out. Thank you for

  • showing up. I am out here on my book tour for this new

  • book, Spirit Junkie, which is my second book. My first book came out in 2010 and it's called

  • Add More -ing to Your Life -- A hip guide to happiness. Ing, i-n-g, stands for inner

  • guidance, not the other ING, [chuckles] but it's inner guidance, not the bank. And I've

  • been practicing and teaching principles for transforming your perceptions and creating

  • positive changes in your life and I've been teaching this work for the past six years.

  • And I came to write this second book as a result of many of my readers, my first book

  • came out and many of the -ing readers came to me and said, we love this book, it's so

  • prescriptive, it's really helping us, I love taking all this action in my life, but I wanna

  • know more about how you became the happiest person you know. How did you change your perceptions?

  • How did you overcome your fears? How did you get over addiction? How did you get over work

  • addiction, love addiction, drug addiction, all the different things that each of us in

  • some corner of our life deals with in some way? And so, I, I had to listen to that call

  • of my readers and I was inspired and guided to write this new book, Spirit Junkie, and

  • really put my story on paper and be very authentic about who I am and what my experiences have

  • been so that I could not only be a genuine messenger, but also be a guide for those who

  • were inspired by my story. So throughout each chapter in every book there is my own personal

  • anecdotes of how I've experienced my fear-based illusions and how I've transformed them and

  • within every chapter there's also beautiful guidance, there's tips, which I'm gonna give

  • you many of them today. And so it's not, it's not just a memoir, it's a memoir-style-guide

  • book is what I've written, so it gives you this opportunity to soak up someone else's

  • experience, be inspired by somebody else's story, but in the same moment, take on your

  • own experience of creating whether it be a spiritual relationship or you could call it

  • a relationship with your own internal guidance system, or activating your inspiration, or

  • creating more life flow. A big, a big thing that happens when people

  • come to my lectures or come to my groups or read my books, is that a common through line

  • with most of the people that come to me is that they're feeling as though at least one

  • corner of their life is not flowing naturally. They're feeling like, ok, I think things could

  • be dialed up a little bit more in my career area, or I have a great relationship to my

  • finances, but I'm a complete mess in my romantic relationships. Or there's some corner that

  • feels as though it could be more amplified, it could be more inspired, it could flow more

  • naturally. Or maybe it's every corner. Many people come to me and they say, across the

  • board things are tough, I'm in fear. And so all of my work is to help my readers and my

  • listeners and my audiences learn to shift their perceptions and create change in their

  • life. And so what I'll do today is I'll give you a little bit of a background about how

  • I became the happiest person I know, how I became a spirit junkie and then within that

  • story, I'm gonna give you some guidelines for you to start to do the same. And the purpose

  • of this book and my, my goal for this book was not to say, ok, here is my story, here

  • is how I did it, here is how you have to do it. But rather just to create a platform for

  • you to crack open, to have the willingness to make your own change and to help you create

  • a relationship, a spiritual relationship or a, an inspired relationship to your own inner

  • guidance system of your own understanding. So this isn't about you just saying, ok, I'm

  • gonna take her work and do it my way, it's about you opening up and creating your own

  • path through the guidance I'll give you. So throughout my experience of writing this

  • book, I really tell this story of how throughout my life, from adolescence to the present,

  • I have been hearing this knock on the door, this inspiration, this inner dialogue, this

  • voice within me that has said, be great, be wonderful, love yourself, have an incredible

  • life, you can do this, you can have what you desire, you can achieve a life beyond your

  • wildest dreams. And each of us has that loving voice within us. Each of us has that intuition,

  • I call it your ing, your inner guide, that loving presence within you that is like, yes,

  • you rock, you can do this. But at some point in time, most of us at a very young age, we

  • pick up this negative belief system. We pick up the beliefs of the world, we pick up the

  • fears of our parents, we pick up the fears of our, of the news, of the people on the

  • playground, of our teachers. At some point in time we pick up this one negative mad idea,

  • it becomes like a virus in our mind. And these different limiting beliefs come to each of

  • us in different ways. For some people it might be just something as simple as maybe your

  • parents didn't pay attention to you. So you feel 'I'm not good enough because when I was

  • six my parents didn't pay attention to me'. And this, it could be as simple as this. Or

  • it could be something much more traumatic that you know, all of us have different pain

  • experiences throughout our lives. But at some point in time, that negative belief system

  • is imprinted within our emotional being and we recreate that belief system. We replay

  • that negative thought pattern. We take that negative thought pattern and bring it into

  • our present moment and we project it on to the future. And it becomes like this spiral

  • and we become stuck. We stay cornered in these negative patterns. I'm sure most everyone

  • in this room in some area in your life feels as though you keep replaying the same crazy

  • crap over and over and over again. And just get honest with yourself right now. You don't

  • have to get honest in front of all of your coworkers, but get honest with yourself right

  • now and just be really clear with yourself of what are the areas where I'm replaying

  • all that stuff? Where am I saying to myself, I'm not good enough? In what ways am I replaying

  • that belief system that I picked up as a kid? It's something as simple as 'I'm not feeling

  • like I can have that career' or growing up with the experience of lack in your home and

  • then believing in lack and never feeling as though you can make more money. Or seeing

  • your divorced family and seeing that you know 'I can't have a powerful, loving relationship

  • because this is what I grew up around'. And so for me this was the case in many different

  • corners of my life. I was this adolescent girl having an existential crisis and I felt

  • as though I was really confused when most of my contemporaries were worried about the

  • prom and you know what they're having for lunch, I cared more about why I was here.

  • I always had this deep desire to know what is the purpose? What is my purpose? Why am

  • I here at this time? And there was this, this 16-year old girl and this, this crazy mindset

  • of what's going on? And as many young people, I experienced a lot of depression. I felt

  • as though I was just stuck. I felt as though I was misunderstood. And so for me, I grew

  • up in the suburbs with this Yogi mom and a hippie dad and I turned to my mom for guidance.

  • I said to my mom, listen, I see you walk into your meditation shrine every day. I hear that

  • mantra coming through the door. I smell the incense pouring out through underneath the

  • door. What goes on in that room? I see you go in crazy and I see you walk out calm. What

  • goes on in that room? I want some of that. And so I said if I want what she has, I gotta

  • do what she does. And so as a 16-year old girl I turned to my mother and I said, show

  • me what you got. Give me that meditation practice. Teach me what you're doing. And so my mom

  • sat my ass down on a meditation pillow [laughs] and she taught me how to meditate. And so

  • at 16 years old I was desperate. I was willing. I had this deep desire to change. I needed

  • a solution. And so I allowed my mom's words to come through me, I allowed the mantra to

  • come through me and I began, at the time, what began my meditation practice. And so

  • I felt this amazing connection from the beginning stages of my practice. I started to feel that

  • within five minutes of sitting in stillness and deep breathing and practicing the mantra

  • that I could actually feel more calm. I witnessed my extremities begin to tingle. I felt like

  • I was connecting to a much greater energy than the energy that I was just dealing with

  • on my day to day life. I felt inspired ideas come forward. I felt, most importantly, peace.

  • I felt a sense of peace, a sense of oneness, a sense of being good enough, a sense of being

  • understood even though nobody else was around. And so this was a really neat time for me.

  • It was this beautiful seed that my mom had planted that would then become the catalyst

  • for many changes in the future. But, like most smart-ass adolescent girls, I thought

  • that there was a better way. I said, ok, that's cool, I got that now, but there's gotta be

  • a way better way than this. So I did what most kids do, which is, you know, I rolled

  • the joint and drank a 40. And I said ok this is, this is the other way. Right? It's something

  • out there is gonna make me happy. Something beyond me is gonna be my source of peace.

  • And so for several years, from 16 to about the age of 25, I was on a big search for that

  • outside source of happiness. I was looking for it in my credentials. I was looking for

  • it in my relationships. I was looking for it in a pair of shoes.

  • I was living in New York City when I graduated college and at 21 years old I started a public

  • relations business representing night clubs. And so I was out there feeling like, ok, now

  • I have arrived. I had this credential and it says president on my business card and

  • I'm 21-years old and I am hot shit. Sorry. Can I curse at Google? I'm not sure. [laughing]

  • I guess so, it's comfortable here. Should've asked that first, right Alex? So meanwhile

  • I'm sitting here thinking that I'm this great, this great thing because I've got these outside

  • credentials, I've got this fast-paced New York City lifestyle. I have it made. This

  • is working for me. Meanwhile, that search became this addiction. Looking for more happiness.

  • Once I would get that client, I needed more. When I had that relationship, I needed a different

  • relationship. And I constantly felt like I was this hamster in a wheel, searching and

  • searching and searching for happiness and inspiration outside of myself. One day at

  • a time I kept looking further and further and further. By the time I turned 25, I had

  • a really hardcore revelation that that was not where I was gonna find it. By this point

  • in my outward search I was emotionally, spiritually and physically bankrupt. I had, I had no real

  • friends. No strong inspiration. I had found myself really addicted to the New York City

  • party scene and feeling like that became my home and my lifestyle and that reflected in

  • some really nasty habits. I also would see myself just up at night doing God knows what.

  • But in the midst of all this there was still that inspired voice within me. There was that

  • loving voice, that power voice within me that said, there's something coming. There's something

  • greater. I'd be up at 3 a.m. at after-hours parties in New York City saying to God knows

  • who, "I'm gonna be a motivational speaker and a self-help book author." [chuckles] And

  • somehow I believed me, I really believed this. I intuitively, psychically, knew that there

  • was this thing coming even though it did not reflect in any form the life that I was living

  • at that time. And so by the time I turned 25 I thought to

  • myself, ok, this is not working. Life is not flowing. And that divine moment when I said

  • to myself, there has to be a better way. I had that moment of surrender. And so this

  • is the first lesson I'm gonna give you today which is that all you need to make any change

  • to your life is the deep surrender and the willingness to change. And so I had that.

  • It was October 2, 2005, at 3:00 in the morning. And I was sitting at home and I was coming

  • down from God knows what. I was you know late nights whatever it was all of the crazy crap

  • that I had been putting into my body, all of the terrible ways that I had been living

  • and I was writing in my journal and I wrote, "God, universe, whoever is out there, I need

  • a miracle." There has to be a better way. This was the moment that I fully surrendered.

  • This was the moment that I said, "Show me what you got." I woke up that morning and

  • I heard a really loud internal dialog. A really strong intuition. It said, "Get your life

  • clean and you will live beyond your wildest dreams." This loud voice was very authoritative

  • and very clear and I had no other choice but to listen to that guidance. And so from that

  • day, October 2, 2005, I have been listening to that voice. And one day at a time I have

  • been opening up that willingness to be guided to the teachers, the lessons, and all of the