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Mitch Albom, bestselling author of Tuesdays with Morrie (ep. 81)

Mitch Albom

Mitch Albom, author of the bestselling memoir of all time, Tuesdays with Morrie, never meant to be a writer.

Hear the unlikely way Mitch found himself writing his beloved professor’s memoir; and what it means for your unfulfilled dreams. (Hint, there just might be a silver lining!)

Hear what it was like to learn Morrie’s life lessons, from Morrie himself – first as a student in his classroom and, ultimately, as a friend in his hospital room.

My friends, 15 million have read the book. Countless have watched the movie (produced by Oprah). Today, we will hear the story behind the wisdom Morrie shared 20+ years ago has.

Don’t miss this world-class episode.

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  • “You know you’ve done a lot, when you realize how little you’ve done.”
  • The first time Mitch met his beloved professor, Morrie Schwartz, he thought he’d drop his class. Find out what made him stay – and ultimately take 8 of his classes + write his thesis with him.
  • “Morrie opened my eyes to being a whole person – and that, that was an accomplishment in it of itself. He made me think in terms of being multi-dimensional instead of just ‘get a job, get a career, do well.'”
  • Morrie asked Mitch to keep in touch; 16 years passed without contact. Mitch said, “There was no time to concern myself with the past… only the future. I lost track of Morrie.”
    • Do you have a Morrie? Can you make time to reach out to him today? What might he say if you did?
  • Tuesdays with Morrie is about Mitch’s “visit after I saw him on TV and realized how guilty I felt. He was in the throws of ALS, but was much more positive about life than I was.”
  • Mitch saw the gap between them and wanted to know: What does Morrie know that I don’t, about life now that he’s really looking life in the face? We discussed the meaning of life through the eyes of a man who was dying.
  • Mitch wrote the book to help offset Morrie’s medical bills. They finally found a publisher. Mitch thought: “I’ll write it and it will be over. I’ll have done one nice thing for this man.
  • Tuesdays with Morrie was published without fanfare. It didn’t debut on a bestseller list.
  • Man plans and God laughs.

What Mitch Albom Learned from Morrie Schwartz

  • What would Morrie say today? “Let me know if my head is getting swelled by this… because they aren’t celebrating me, they’re celebrating the message.”
  • Morrie felt enlightened when he was dying; his whole perspective changed in the last two years of his life.
  • “I am on the last great journey of life and everyone wants to ask me what am I packing. ” – Morrie Schwartz
  • What was the main lesson you learned from Morrie? “I asked, ‘Why don’t you accept the sympathy of your visitors?’ He said, ‘Why would I ever take from people? Taking makes me feel like I’m dying, giving makes me feel like I’m living.’ That was a very profound lesson for me and I’ve never forgotten it.”
  • The more you give the better you feel. The earlier you discover that formula, the happier you’re going to be.
  • The best fatherly article John has ever read, was written by Mitch, about Chika, an unlikely friend and daughter he met in Haiti. Read it here.

Did you enjoy this conversation? Hear my November 2019 conversation with Mitch Albom as he shares the heartwarming and emotional story about a young girl who taught him the true meaning of family. Listen to ep. 199 now.


1. What is the best book you’ve ever read? Gilliad, by Marilynne Robinson. It’s a story of an old preacher getting ready to die, writing a letter to his young son. He shares his thoughts on life. It moves me no matter what page I open to.

2. Tomorrow you discover your wealthy uncle shockingly dies at the age of 103; leaving you millions. What would you do with it? Give it away.

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? All the pictures of me and my wife with Chika.

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? God. The first question I’d ask, “What don’t we understand about why we suffer? If you created the world in your image, there’s a disconnect between the pain we endure and the glory we think we’re going to enjoy after we die.”

5. What is the best advice you’ve ever received? My mom said to me, “You’re only going to have a few really good friends in your life no matter how many people you meet. People will disappoint you. The only thing you can do better than to have [a few] people who will always be there and be true, is to marry the best one.”

6. Looking back, what advice would you give yourself at age 20? Slow down. Stop thinking your life is measured by how much you accomplish. Pay attention to how nice people are being to you and how less than nice you are being to them. Recognize that you have a responsibility to the rest of the world, not just yourself. Take a breath now and then… like the Bill Joel lyrics, “Slow down you crazy child, you’re so ambitious for a juvenile.”

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? He learned, he loved and he learned some more; and tried to be better everyday than he had been the day before.


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I can’t wait to see you here next Thursday! Today is your day. Live Inspired.

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


2 replies on “Mitch Albom, bestselling author of Tuesdays with Morrie (ep. 81)”

Thank you for living inspired and humbly sharing not only yourself but allowing me a glimpse into the lives of others that has deeply impacted my life. Today’s is just what I needed to hear today. When would that have been?

Thank you for living inspired and humbly sharing not only yourself but allowing me a glimpse into the lives of others that has deeply impacted my life. Today’s is just what I needed to hear today.

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