As we celebrate Betty White’s birthday, it’s easy to wonder how she has kept herself going for all these years! She already told us her secret is vodka and hot dogs, but what else can we learn from the ever-talented White?
1. Be a Trailblazer
White has been an actress for decades, but few people know that she was also one of the first female producers in Hollywood! In 1952, she started her own production company, called Brandy Productions, and produced the series Life with Elizabeth. She not only producer the series, but also starred in it. The show lasted for 65 episodes.
2. Stay Active (Both in Body and Mind)
As we get older, it’s easy to use it as an excuse to slow down, but not Betty White! In 2010, she described an average day and honestly, it sounds intense! She’s up at 6am, feeds her dogs, works on a project (at the time, her book), then heads to set for a full day of shooting. Then, she comes home, plays with her dogs, does a crossword puzzle, writes some more, and is in bed at 1:30 am.
“I have a two-story house and a bad memory, so I’m up and down those stairs all the time,” she said. “That’s my exercise.”
3. Get Involved
White is a very passionate activist for both people and animals. She has been a leading member of the Great Los Angeles Zoo Association since 1974. She even turns down work if she doesn’t like the message it sends about animals.
“It was the Jim Brooks’ movie As Good As It Gets,” White told Smithsonian Magazine. “They had this puppy dog, this adorable puppy, that at one point they dropped down a laundry chute. It landed on a pile of laundry in the story line, and I turned down the role. There are a lot of people in apartments who would think that was a solution. It would either be funny to do that or it would be a solution to a barking neighbor or something like that. It certainly wouldn’t always have a happy ending. So I said as long as that scene was in the film, I wouldn’t do it.”
In 2014, Betty White earned the Guinness World Record for Longest TV Career for an Entertainer (female). At that point, she had been in the industry for 70 years. White was also the oldest person to host Saturday Night Live. The legendary actress has been nominated for 72 Emmy Awards, which is a record. As for people who credit White’s “comeback” for her success, she just doesn’t understand.
“I don’t know where the ‘comeback’ story came [from],” White told Oprah. “I’ve been working steadily for the last 70 years!”
5. Keep Up
For people over the age of 60, social media can often be confusing and not worth the effort. However, the same can’t be said for White. She’s active on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, with over 5 million followers.
6. Be Versatile
White is the only woman to win an Emmy in all of the performing categories. She’s won for leading actress, actress in a supporting role, guest actress, game show host, and also won a regional Emmy in the 1950s for Life With Elizabeth. No matter what role White is portraying, she always makes sure to give it her all!
7. Have Good Taste
The only way to keep going as long as Betty White has is to make sure you’re picking the right projects! From The Mary Tyler Moore Show to Golden Girls, to Hot In Cleveland, White has never appeared in a project that hasn’t been successful. Pretty much all of her work is iconic, and it’s not just because she’s the one in it!