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Vulnerability is strength: talking with Morgan Willett

Vulnerability is strength: talking with Morgan Willett

“Vulnerability is strength and I think that’s something everyone should remember. ” Such a simple phrase and so full of meaning! This is how Morgan Willett speaks to followers on her podcast. And by speaking freely about what happens to her and what she feels, she helps others not to feel alone.

Three years after the release of her first podcast, Morgan is more full of life than ever, and we dove headlong into her world of travel, fitness, fun, and… feelings.

Let’s start with the news, your podcast is now called “Off the Rails.” Would you like to tell us the reasons for the change? 

As I entered my 30s, I had a chance to reflect and reevaluate who I am and where I want my career to go. I felt like the name “Off The Rails” really embodied how I was feeling in this new chapter: a little lost, dealing with a lot of messiness, and just trying to navigate all the “off the rails” things life was throwing at me as a 30-year-old woman who isn’t married, doesn’t have kids, and isn’t ready to settle down yet, despite societal norms. I will always be “the internet bestie” to my followers, but I really wanted to embrace a more ‘adult’ feel and also return to my southern roots with a more western name!

How did it come about instead, your first podcast? 

Honestly, I was joking around with my audience on my Instagram stories and posted, “Should I start a podcast?!” I was totally overwhelmed by the massive positive response I received. Hundreds of messages flooded my inbox, and from there, my wheels started turning. Once I set my mind to something, I can’t stop until I complete whatever vision I have. I also love to talk, have so many outrageous stories, and have a background in journalism, so it just seemed like the perfect project for me. Then a podcast producer saw my stories and reached out about helping me produce everything, and it just seemed like fate. I said yes, and the rest is history.

Sharing your feelings is something so difficult and at the same time very brave. Did it help you overcome the pain? 

Absolutely. I think I heal through my words and by speaking out. At first, it was terrifying being vulnerable on the internet and allowing everyone to judge my innermost thoughts. However, I realized that with each story I told and each person I reached with my words, I was healing parts of myself. Vulnerability is strength, and I think it’s something everyone should remember. You aren’t weak for having feelings, and if you can speak up and speak out, it will only help others and make you realize you are not alone.

We know you are starring in Mitchell Tenpenny’s new music video, what was it like during filming? you have any fun anecdotes to share? 

That was such a blast, and I have nothing but amazing things to say about Mitchell and his team! It was my first music video, and it was so cool to see the behind-the-scenes process. We filmed it in an old warehouse in Nashville, and it was a crazy experience. I had to laugh because, when I was living in Los Angeles, I wanted to try acting, so I took improv classes. I ended up never using them because I realized I am awful at playing the role of anyone but myself. It turns out I got to use my improv skills in the music video shoot because I was playing Mitchell’s old love interest. It’s kind of awkward showing up and having to look lovingly into the eyes of someone you just met, but we both laughed and had a great time.

You try, as much as possible, to lead a healthy lifestyle. Has it always been this way? In what ways do you remain consistent and keep fit? 

I have always been very active and into fitness because of my background in cheerleading. I spent hours in the gym growing up and continued my active lifestyle by cheering at the University of Texas into my early 20s. My interest in health and wellness really took off when I started working at SoulCycle and realized how fitness and eating right helped combat the severe anxiety I developed as I got older. Now, I can’t go without a good gym session and clean eating. By 30, I have realized what makes me feel my best, and that is my top priority.

To stay consistent, I always prioritize daily movement, even when traveling. I make sure to set my alarm earlier, even if it means only going on a 20-minute walk or stretching. I also like to write down my weekly fitness and movement goals in a calendar to hold myself accountable. Beyond working out, diet is extremely important to me. I always make sure I get my protein and stay hydrated. My friends joke about the amount of water I consume and my emotional support water bottle that I never leave the house without. But hey, it’s important to me!

You’ve also launched a fitness app to help those who know less than you do about training and nutrition. We want to know all about it! 

I launched my fitness business, Move Like Morgan, during the pandemic in 2020 because I realized many people were seeking a fitness community and guidance. I loved working out and teaching fitness classes, so I decided to start doing it virtually and help people understand that you can work out from home—and it can be FUN. From there, I grew my community, started doing more challenges and on-demand workouts, and then decided to launch my own app to allow people to access all things “Morgan” all the time! Now, I offer on-demand workouts that you can do from anywhere, healthy and easy recipes, a blog, and a community to chat with. It’s been wonderful using my app to connect with people and encourage them to use fitness not to look a certain way, but to feel their strongest.

What would you like to say to the Morgan of 10 years ago? 

I would tell my younger self: Be you. Don’t tone yourself down to make others feel comfortable. Don’t be afraid to stand out and speak up. It’s okay to take up space, and you will be happiest when you simply show up exactly as you are.

Do you have any particular projects in the works that you would like to give us a sneak peek of? What are your plans for the near future?

Right now, I am working on building my travel business called “Miles With Morgan,” where I host group trips and allow women from all over to see new places, connect with like-minded people, and challenge themselves to be open to new experiences! I just hosted a trip in Portugal, and my next one will be in Bali.

My plans are to continue focusing on my podcast and growing my network, while enjoying a summer full of travel. I have some really great guests lined up and even plan on recording some episodes while I am abroad to share all the behind-the-scenes of my life.

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cover image by Kelsey Cotton 

 

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