The Wendy Williams brand of high gossip and low drama is working on daytime TV. Love or hate her pop culture-obsessed gossipy, “tell it like it is” persona, Williams’ show has already been renewed until 2017. In a great interview with Refinery 29, Williams shares her road from radio to creating the number one syndicated talk show in America. Williams has just as much self-confidence and self-awareness as you’re expect from someone who has created a national platform for herself seemingly on her own. Her advice is valuable, old school, and a little scary:On forging your own career path:

“[A]lways have a plan B. I’m not a dream killer; I’m a realist. Everybody can’t be a pop star. The church is filled with girls who can sing better than Mariah Carey, but Mariah is the one who grabbed the brass ring.”

On stepping stones:

“I was passionate about radio. I could’ve played country music and had the time of my life. That’s the mistake a lot of people make. If you want to be a magazine journalist, you cannot say, ‘Oh my god, I would love to write for Vogue, and that’s it.’ If you’re a journalist, then you write. Whether you are writing for Field & Stream or Highlights, you write. And then, you work your way toward what you like. You don’t pigeonhole yourself.”

On sacrifice:

“It’s very, very lonely if you’re really going to succeed in something. … Going back to what I say to women that don’t have the strength? You’d better find it. Because the world will run you over. Nobody has time to wait for you to get strong. And, none of us are strong in the beginning, but you can’t let the world see that you’re not strong. Through the sleepless nights of crying and loneliness trying to do your hustle, there will be so many sacrifices you have to make, guys who don’t understand your drive, parents who don’t quite understand you.”

On body image:

“It’s manageable if you are aware of the skin that you are in. And, I am aware of the skin I am in. I know that they’re implants, but I know my breasts are large and I know that at 5-foot-11 in flat feet. I have no business wearing four-inch heels, but my power is in my height. So, I use it as my best accessory. Also, I’m aware that I like longer, blonder hair.”

On feminism:

“Maybe I’m a modern feminist. You know what a modern feminist is? A girl who is not scared to be a girly-girl or to be vulnerable, because, secretly, she knows she can be as hard and strong as any man.”Maybe that comes from having a good career. I’ve always been able to pay my own bills; I’ve never needed a man for anything other than to tell me that I’m pretty and have some sex with me and love me and make me feel secure. And, that’s a really good feeling.”

On survival:

“You have to be your own best friend. That’s probably the best piece of advice I can give any woman: Be your own best friend and you will never be alone.”

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