“I’ve developed a desire to carry on and move forward.”
“I’ve been working since I was eight years old. I’ve just pushed through life,” says Sarah Jessica Parker over the phone. “I’ve had wonderful experiences and I’ve had hard experiences. And I didn’t want to focus on the things that were painful. I gave them the time they needed, but for me, being sad — or disappointed or frustrated or angry or bitter — just didn’t seem to move me forward.”
The And Just Like That… actor has partnered with RoC Skincare for the second year in a row on the #LookForwardProject in collaboration with non-profit organization SeekHer, which aims to bridge the gender gap of mental health in the U.S. through advocacy and research. The project’s mission is to support a more optimistic future via access to mental health advocacy and resources for teens and their parents. She’s also curated a limited edition skincare kit with the science-backed brand, with profits going to SeekHer.
The brand has shared some data about the role of optimism, especially as it impacts teens and their caregivers, finding that 69 per cent of moms are concerned their negativity about the future could impact their child’s outlook and 97 per cent of moms believe there should be more resources and support to ensure our children learn how to incorporate optimism into their lives. During our call, I realize that natural optimist Parker is the perfect person for the role.
“I think I’ve developed, through experience, a desire to carry on and move forward,” she says. “I try not to get too trapped in things that are painful. It’s not productive.” As for how her outlook impacts her parenting (Parker has three kids; son James, 20, and twin daughters Tabitha and Marion, 13), she says, “I want them to feel good about the things that are interesting to them. And I want them to feel excited about the future, even though the world is incredibly complicated and they will eventually be exposed to social media and all the landmines that exist there. I want them to find comfort in individuality.”
Parker says she has chosen to work with RoC Skincare again because the brand’s messaging “is about taking the focus off looks, and the idea of ‘aging.’ The focus is living and the optimism that can come with experience, time and perspective. What RoC really wants is for women to feel good when they leave their homes and feel like they’re like themselves, not like their neighbour, not like the other mothers at school drop-off, not like the other teachers. Like themselves.” As for her own perspective on aging, she says, “I really don’t think about it. And I don’t think that makes me evolved. I just don’t think it’s registered in a way that’s been dominant. I haven’t worked hard to not think about it. I just don’t think about it.”
I ask Parker if she partakes in any practices that help fuel her optimism, such as meditation or journaling. “Nope, nope, nope. None of that,” she laughs. “And I don’t do self-care days. I just pick myself up and get back to work. That’s the way I’ve always lived my life.”