The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker

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Minnie Driver on ageing, expectation and creased Brad Pitt!

Season 8, Ep. 77

My guest this week is one of the most enduring movie actresses of our (by which I mean my!) generation. Minnie Driver made her first film, Circle of Friends in 1995, and went on to follow that with a lead role in Stanley Tucci’s gorgeous ode to Italian food, Big Night, an Oscar nominated turn in Goodwill Hunting. And my personal favourite Grosse Point Blank. 


Now 52, with a 13yo son, Henry, and over fifty roles under her belt, Minnie is still “doing Hollywood” very much her own way. As well as two albums and a podcast (Minnie’s Questions), she’s now written a memoir, Managing Expectations, a book about how things not working out for her inevitably led to other things working out.


Minnie joined me from her LA home to tell me why being called outspoken makes her want to punch walls, overcoming the curse of other people’s expectations (and her own!), why she always felt like a failure for not being married, how getting fired never feels any less unjust and embracing her vengeful streak! She also introduces me to the concept of is-ness, shares her big hair survival tips and has things to say about why Hollywood dudes can be creased, but women can’t!


You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including Managing Expectations by Minnie Driver, Minnie's book recommendation Send Nudes by Saba Sams and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!


And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/


The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.

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6/21/2022

Sabrina Pace-Humphreys on rural racism, alcoholism and the life-saving power of running

Season 8, Ep. 84
This week’s guest will make you wonder what you do with your time! Sabrina Pace-Humphreys is an award-winning business woman, a social justice activist, an ultra-runner, a mother of four and grandmother of three. (And as if that wasn't enough, right now, as of June 19th, she's running 268 miles along The Spine of the UK!) Not bad going for 44.But it is none of those things that led her to write her memoir, Black Sheep - a story of growing up Black, on the poverty line, in small town England. As a child, and the only Black person in that town, she experienced constant bullying, verbal and physical racist abuse. She didn’t know who she was, or where she belonged.Sabrina joined me to talk about why she’s decided it’s time to speak out about rural racism. The impact of growing up in a place where literally no-one looked like her and How she finally found the identity she craved. Sabrina is incredibly frank about burying herself in workaholism and alcoholism, her battles with anxiety, and how learning to run - after a lifetime of mocking runners! - saved her. If you’re looking for motivation to start running look no further. In fact, if you’re looking for motivation full stop, you’ve found it.You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including BLACK SHEEP by Sabrina Pace-Humphreys, and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter plus loads more content including transcripts of the podcast, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
6/16/2022

FROM THE ARCHIVE: Ruth Ozeki on why menopause is the new adolescence

Season 8, Ep. 83
Last night Ruth won the Women's Prize for her wonderful novel, The Book Of Form And Emptiness, so I thought I'd give this another listen. Here are the original show notes:My guest this week is a novelist, film-maker - and Zen Buddhist priest. Ruth Ozeki was born in Conneticut in the 1950s to a Japanese mother and, as she puts it, caucasian anthropologist father. Despite always wanting to write, she didn’t publish her first novel until she was 40, because, in part, she “didn’t feel entitled to”. She needn’t have worried. That novel, My Year Of Meats, won the Kiriyama Prize and the American Book Award, and her third A Tale For The Time Being, was shortlisted for the Man Booker prize in 2013. Her latest novel, The Book Of Form And Emptiness, looks destined to go the same way.But buddhism has informed Ruth’s life just as much as - if not more than - writing. She joined me to run the conversational gamut! We talked meditation, ageing, grief, living through the death of our parents, writing out her teenage mental health crises, why objects mean so much to us, the appeal of Marie Kondo, coming to terms with our ageing face and why menopause and adolescence have so much in common.• You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including The Book Of Form And Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter plus loads more content including transcripts of the podcast, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.
6/14/2022

Christie Watson on menopause, midlife and mischief

Season 8, Ep. 82
I’ve lost count of the number of women I’ve spoken to who were taken totally by surprise by perimenopause but, to date, none of them actually had medical training. Todays guest changes all that. Before she was an award winning writer, Christie watson was a nurse. She spent 20 years on children’s intensive care before her debut won the Costa first novel award and altered the trajectory of her life.Since then Christie has written two bestselling nursing memoirs, including the wonderful The Language of Kindness, and a second novel. Then, aged 42, perimenopause totally floored her. A single mum of two teenagers, she suddenly found herself a “blubbering snot crying wreck” in Sainsburys car park - a stranger, inside and out. Sound familiar?!I met Christie to talk about her memoir about that experience, Quilt On Fire, in a no-man’s land opposite the US embassy. As you do. We discussed being blindsided by menopause, grey pubic hairs, biblical bleeding, and the impact of unresolved trauma. Plus Being single in midlife and braving the dating shark tank, her own personal menopause club (lucky woman), having a vulva the size of Brazil, the joy of becoming visible to older women and why nobody really has their shit together. Oh and an unexpected use for frozen fish fingers.You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at Bookshop.org, including QUILT ON FIRE by Christie Watson, and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!And if you'd like to support the work that goes into making this podcast and get a weekly newsletter plus loads more content including transcripts of the podcast, please join The Shift community. Find out more at https://steadyhq.com/en/theshift/• The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford. If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.