Meagan Good is planning a vacation. It’s going to be some place sunny, it’s going to involve friends and it’s going to celebrate the fact that she is turning 40 in a big way.
It’s not lost on Good that she’s now at the age that was, at one time, considered the unofficial “over-the-hill” milestone for those lucky enough to reach it—and she is full-on embracing and what she calls “shifting into” her next decade, especially when it comes to her overall health, self-care and wellness.
“I don’t know if I can pinpoint exactly what has changed for me yet, but I know I feel freer,” the actress-model, who can currently be seen in Harlem, premiering this week on Amazon Prime, shares. “I definitely feel a sense of peace and ownership over myself; I feel less affected and more in control of my peace of mind, my rest and God. There’s been some significant changes—I’m not sure I can tell you exactly what they all are, but I do feel very different. And that is a wonderful thing.”
How has your outlook on life changed with this birthday?
“I have suddenly become more aware of my health, in general. When you’re younger, you don’t think about things like smoking, having a few cocktails, not always working out the way that you should, getting proper rest, or drinking enough water. All these things become more in-view as you get older—especially for me; I haven’t had kids yet, and my husband [Good is married to DeVon Franklin] and I have been talking about doing that this year.”
When you turn 40, you become more aware of your health and wellness.
What’s that conversation like?
“A lot of that involves asking myself, ‘What do I need to be changing, because my body is changing, and I need to make sure that I’m in the proper health so this body can take me everywhere that I want it to go. Part of that is motherhood, part of that is doing more action movies, part of that is being someone who advocates for health—not just physically, but the mind, the body, the spirit.
It’s not a surprise that it becomes more apparent as you get older that your body is changing. You feel more aches, you feel the difference if you get six hours of sleep versus eight. Those things are just a lot more on your radar.
Then you start to realize that you aren’t invincible, and you need to learn how to treat your body, because you’re only going to get this one body for the rest of your life. And that is everything, even down to skin care, because you only get one face for the rest of your life, too. All these things are important.”
Self-care seems to be a big part of your day-to-day, especially the part you share on social media. How has that changed for you this past year?
“I started shifting when I turned 35. That’s when I was like, ‘I have a choice about which way I want this to go.’ I got mindful about working out and made it a part of my life. I go on and off and I have seasons, but, during the pandemic, the big thing I started to deal with was my mental health. I really took that that time for myself and asked, ‘What’s under the hood here?’
I started going to therapy and I realized a lot of things that I went through when I was younger—mainly as a teenager growing up in this industry and certain things that went on at home—produce certain behaviors, and those behaviors reflect how we take care of ourselves and a whole bunch of other things, even now.
Last year opened many of our eyes to being more intentional and thinking about what we want out of life, what’s our purpose and why we are here. I’ve been taking a good look at how I can implement things that can help me reach my full potential, and part of that was deciding not to drink anymore wine—I used to love having my wine in front of the TV at night!
Now, I like my green juices, I like working out and, other than that, I take time to pray, meditate, read my Bible and be intentional. I also am doing a better job saying what I want to put my energy and effort toward—I don’t always have to be busy. I used to think I was missing out on something if I didn’t keep myself busy, but now, I appreciate rest and peacefulness so much more. That, and consistent therapy have all, honestly, been life-shifting. I appreciate how far I’ve come and I’m excited to look at where I’m going, while also being in the present.”
It sounds like a strong moment of reflection. What advice would you tell your younger self?
“I would tell myself: ‘You are unique. There’s nobody else in the world like you. We can do it, we can do it, we can do it. Love all of who you are, embrace all of who you are, be honest and authentic without apologizing.
Also, know that you’re not for everyone, and that’s OK. That’s how you learn who your tribe is—the people whose lives you’re meant to touch, those people who are meant to touch your life.’
I would also want to tell myself that it’s not all that serious. At the end of the day, life is going to keep happening and you just need to focus on purpose and how you use the talents that God has given you to walk with purpose. And be present, because it’s not about the destination, it is about the experience.”
I appreciate how far I’ve come and I’m excited to look at where I’m going, while also being in the present.
What are you excited to experience next?
“I’m really excited to start a family soon. But, right now, career-wise, I’m excited for the world to watch Harlem. I love this character of Camille that I play. She is so quirky and off-beat and that is exactly my brand of comedy. I was just saying the other day that I want to do more Lucille Ball–type comedy, the physical stuff. Everyone’s brand of comedy is unique, but mine is definitely quirky, and I get to do exactly that with this character. I also get to be vulnerable and smart, sensitive and strong, so it’s a whole bunch of different things wrapped up into one.
Then, next year, I have a Netflix movie with Jamie Foxx, Snoop Dogg and Dave Franco coming out. I’m also going to do Sundance with a short film. It’s part of an initiative called Women Write Now, which gives women of color all kinds of opportunities to submit scripts—it’s really inspiring.
Six years ago, I said a prayer and basically said, ‘I really want to be a superhero and to be in that space.’ That was the beginning of my journey with working out. I did the first Shazam! back in 2019 and we’re coming back with another installment and that’s just such a fun character for me.
It’s cool because I get to turn 40 while I’m playing a superhero and being in the best shape of my life. It’s a peaceful place to be in—spiritually, emotionally, physically. It’s just a wonderful time in life right now. I’m excited to tune into this movie and to know that, when I watch it, I can say: ‘Yes, I did that while I was turning 40! And I was kicking butt all-over the city.’”
Photography by DeWayne Rogers; Makeup: Jorge Monroy; Styling: Jeremy Haynes
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