Meghan Markle Talks Social Media and Using Her Voice at Fortune Summit

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Photo by Chris Jackson – Pool/Getty Images

“Sometimes making the best decision for yourself and your family might not be the most popular one.”

Overnight, Meghan Markle appeared in the virtual Most Powerful Next Gen Summit for Fortune. During the conversation with associate editor Emma Hinchlife, the Duchess of Sussex – wearing a Batik print camisole and Cuyana Luna earrings – touched upon many important subjects including social media, following her convictions, exercising her voice and how motherhood has changed her view on leadership. Whilst the full video has not yet been released, there is no shortage of clips and snippets being shared by news outlets and on social media of some of the conversation’s highlights. See some of what she had to say during the 15-minute chat below:

On learning to “chase her convictions with actions”

“Sometimes making the best decision for yourself and your family might not be the most popular one. But when you really know who you are and you know what your belief system is and you live by truth, then I think that can start to peel away the layers of where the fear comes in. And one of the things I’ve continued to tell myself for a long time is that my faith is greater than my fear – and perhaps that’s faith in a higher power or yourself or humanity – whatever it is it has to be greater than whatever fears are hindering you from taking that step. If I were to give any advice, yes you have to consider the big picture but sometimes just making that first move is enough to put you in the right direction. Start somewhere and then you have have no idea where you’ll end up but if you don’t start at all, you’ll always be in the same place and oftentimes that’s not a good place.”

On exercising her voice

“Your voice matters. You realize it more when you are not able to exercise it. Regardless of my experience over the last few years compared to anyone’s experience, you can’t take for granted the ability you have as a woman to be able to be heard, and now with the platform that people have on social media to actually have that voice heard for a larger audience, I think that’s a huge responsibility.”

On social media

“For my own self-preservation, I have not been on social media for a very long time. I had a personal account years ago, which I closed down and then we had one through the institution and our office that was in the UK that wasn’t managed by us – that was a whole team – and so I think that comes with the territory for the job you have. I’ve made a personal choice to not have any account, so I don’t know what’s out there, and in many ways that’s helpful for me. I have a lot of concerns for people that have become obsessed with it. And it is so much a part of our daily culture for so many people that it’s an addiction like many others. There are very few things in this world where you call the person who is engaging with it a user. There is something algorithmically that is in there that is creating this obsession that I think is very unhelpful for a lot of people.”

On how motherhood has changed the way she views leadership

“It’s interesting because my gut is that it makes you more courageous. It makes you so concerned for the world they’re going to inherit, so the things you’re able to tolerate on your own are not the same that you are going to put your child in a position of vulnerability for. You go every single day – how can I make this world a better place for Archie? That is a shared belief for my husband and I. At the same time, I am cautious of putting my family at risk by certain things. I try to be very clear in what I say and to not make it controversial and instead talk about things that seem fairly straightforward, like exercising your right to vote. I think that’s as simple as it comes and as necessary as it comes and to that point as a parent, I can enjoy all the fun and silliness and games with my son but I wouldn’t be able to feel proud of myself as a mom if I didn’t know that I was doing my part to make it a better place for him.”

On what’s next

“Everything I’m doing is for Archie, our son… There’s a lot that I’m excited about – certainly in creating programming and content that is conscious and inspiring and has a call to action and is uplifting. And I’m excited to be back home in the States and hopefully as things start to open up a bit more with COVID, just to be back and engaging and interacting with people in a different way and in a way that will allow me to roll my sleeves up and really be boots on the ground back at home.”

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