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Actress Stephanie Szostak on Life, Inspiration and Work (ep. 101)

Stephanie Szostak

Stephanie Szostak stars on A Million Little Things, a TV show that shares the story of a group of friends in the wake of suicide.

I’m honored to have Stephanie on the show to bring mental health into the light during Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. We’ll also talk about her life, inspiration, work (Dinner for Schmucks, The Devil Wears Prada, Iron Man 3!) and how she became a fan of the Live Inspired Podcast.

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  • Take our survey to be entered to win autographed goodies from past guests!
  • Stephanie shared that the director wrote A Million Little Things to honor his friend who died by suicide + hoped it would create opportunities to start conversations about this difficult topic.
  • “You only live once. It’s an adventure! It will be great for the kids to see their mother pursue her dreams.” The support her husband shared when taking a role that entailed commuting.
  • “You will always know what is right from wrong. You won’t always do it, but you’ll always know.”
  • “Be curious and don’t judge.” – Stephanie Szostak
  • “Working on Iron Man 3 with Robert Downy Jr. was like doing a dance with an unbelievably talented and generous partner who led you. It was a really incredible experience.”
  • “Show your vulnerability. We think it makes us weak, but it makes us free. It is courageous.”
  • What would you say to someone going through a hard time? Talking is helpful. Sometimes we don’t want to open up or be a drag. Pick up the phone, go to therapy, speak to somebody, so that you can get a tool to brighten your day and change your mindset.

If you’d like to hear more inspired dialogue around mental health and suicide prevention, check out Ep. #99 with Adam Clayton-Holland or Ep. #46 with Dennis Gillan. If you enjoyed hearing a bit about Hollywood, check out Ep. 58 with Matt Emerzian.


1. What is the best book you’ve ever read? The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra. It changed my life. And The Power of Now by Eckhart Toehl.

2. What is a characteristic or trait that you possessed as a child that you wish you still exhibited today? Playfulness, as a mom when I am caught up in the domesticity of life, cooking dinner and all this, I wish I would just let go and be more playful.

3. Your house is on fire, all living things and people are out. You have the opportunity to run in and grab one item. What would it be? The old family pictures on our book shelf and passports.

4. You are sitting on a bench overlooking a gorgeous beach. You have the opportunity to have a long conversation with anyone living or dead. Who would it be? Bob Marly, Mick Jagger, Patty Smith and my brother! We’re looking at the ocean. They’re all such poets and free spirits the conversation just starts; life, creativity and love. And I am in heaven listening to all of them.

5. What is the best advice you’ve ever received? To do the exercise called the Impossible Future. My husband and I went into different rooms and answered: “If there were no obstacles and anything was possible, what would every aspect of your life look like?” Then share it. It’s a great way to get to know each other.

Also, give to each other without expecting anything in return or calling out what you did.

6. What advice would you give your 20-year-old self? You don’t know who you are yet. It’s okay. Take your time and be curious.

7. It’s been said that all great people can have their lives summed up in one sentence. How do you want yours to read? She did it her way and inspired others to do the same.


If you enjoyed today’s episode: Subscribe, rate & review wherever you get your podcasts. See you here next Thursday!

Live Inspired with John every day on FacebookTwitterYouTubeLinkedInPinterest, Instagram and get his Monday Motivation email: www.JohnOLearyInspires.com/Monday-Morning

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