Story at a glance

  • Jennifer Aniston is interviewed by fellow movie star Sandra Bullock in a new issue of Interview Magazine.
  • She discusses what she learned from a stressful childhood and how she copes with negativity today.

Jennifer Aniston is used to having her personal life in the spotlight. But this time, she’s the one doing the talking, opening up about her mental health and her “way of pushing joy and positivity.”

Sitting down for an interview with fellow actress Sandra Bullock for Interview Magazine, Aniston discussed how she stayed optimistic even amid disappointment.

“I think that it comes from growing up in a household that was destabilized and felt unsafe, watching adults be unkind to each other...,” Aniston recounted as she described parts of her childhood, affirming: “You can either be angry or be a martyr, or you can say, ‘You’ve got lemons? Let’s make lemonade.’”

What Aniston refers to here is her parents’ divorce, which appears to have fed into what negatively affects her the most: the news.

“Turning on the television, listening to the news, reading the paper — that can make me really sad and really angry. The division that’s been taking place,” Aniston explained, “The complete chaos that’s existing. When people show greed and bad behavior and a lack of gratitude. It’s so hard to put this in an eloquent way. When you see people behaving badly and hurting other people, that makes me very angry.”

In a restless 24-hour news cycle crowded with stories both uplifting and grim, Aniston isn’t the only one who feels this way. Psychological studies have concluded that the news and information humans receive and internalize can bring about anxiety and sorrow.

Aniston explains that her best remedy is engaging with her friends and colleagues about innovations in mental, physical and spiritual health. Bullock recalls being invited to one of Aniston’s soirees, where she hosts lectures on new well-being information.

Bullock herself is particularly grateful, saying it is a great gesture in a world where people are “glued to their iPhones.”

Aniston is, again, on to something. It has been highly documented that taking a break from your phone and participating in mental exercise, such as mindfulness and maintaining close relationships, and physical activity can reduce stress and increase self-worth.

Aniston says she is guided by enjoying the experience, and she encourages other women to look past industry expectations and results.

“I think that’s a real key to success in life,” she says, “to not worry about the landing, but enjoy the experience.”

Published on Feb 12, 2020