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Friday, 3 April, 2009 2:33 AM

Dr. Phil sends a message of hope and positive encouragement in Detroit

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Dr. Phil McGraw speaks at the Music Hall for the Performing Arts on April 1, 2009.

by Jason Rzucidlo
americajr@americajr.com

 

DETROIT -- Dr. Phil McGraw received hundreds of letters from metro Detroiters who have lost their job, their house or some other important aspect of their life. He read those letters and decided to come to Detroit and speak to families in two free shows. McGraw spoke to a crowd of 1,500 at the Music Hall for the Performing Arts on Wednesday. Attendees were required to send in a 1,000-word essay to WWJ-TV, the local affiliate of his popular talk show. The station then sent out special passes for metro Detroiters to attend the show.

McGraw spoke on the economy, troubling Detroit automakers, job losses, his personal history and offered a dose of encouragement. He also read two questions by audience members and answered them during the show.

"Are these crazy times or what?" said Dr. Phil McGraw. "I want to give everybody an edge to lead your family. You got to have two things: Love in your heart for yourself and family. Your plan needs to be a goal-centered plan. Families in America are under attack. We have to fight back. We're in a forced slowdown. A forced return to what I think a return to family. Live smaller and simpler. Do staycations instead of vacations."

Pat Lalko of Washington Township, was one of the audience members that got her question answered by Dr. Phil. She was recently laid off from her sales job and asked the talk show host how she could help pay for her three sons to go to college. "This is a teachable moment," he said. Your kids should "take 12 [credit] hours instead of 16 and get a job."

Jacob and Jennifer DuCharme of Troy, were audience members who also got their questions answered. Both lost their jobs a week after getting married. McGraw said the couple was using "non-directional frustration", which is venting toward a person who's handy. "When Robin and I got married 32 years ago, we had no money. Take any job you can get. Keep looking for a job."

The talk show host unveiled his formula for success: First, you need a very specific vision. "Name it to claim it," he said. Secondly, you need to have a plan. Next, you need to pursue your goal until you reach it. Finally, surround yourself with people who want you to succeed.

McGraw said most things in life are about perception. People call it a tragedy when it rains on your wedding. A real tragedy is being diagnosed with cancer. Losing your job, your house or your marriage are not real tragedies, he said.

"Language is powerful," said McGraw. "Labels are a powerful thing. It's so very important what you say to yourself. Your body follows that. What you label yourself is powerful."

In terms of the economy, he said in one year from now, you will either be better off or worse off than you are right now. McGraw told metro Detroiters to mark April 1, 2010 on their calendar and re-examine their past year. "We'll get through this," the behavioral psychologist said. "I'm not an expert, but I've talked to the top experts in the world."

McGraw explained the concept of personal truth: "What you believe about yourself when nobody's looking, listening. I had a real damaged personal truth. Kids compare their personal truth to other kids' personal truths. If you make a statement, know what it is and own it."

Rumors were flying in the tabloids that Dr. Phil and his wife Robin were getting a divorce. He set the record straight and denied those allegations: "Robin and I are not getting a divorce."

The talk show host told the audience a little of his personal history. McGraw said he was poor and homeless the summer before high school. He said there was several nights when he went to bed hungry and didn't have a job. McGraw said he's been bald since he was 12 years old.

"My dad was a psychologist," said the talk show host. "He started teaching and preaching."

The talk show host talked about the film industry and how it's been coming to Michigan. He told the audience about an hour long conversation he had with Gov. Jennifer Granholm. "The buzz in Hollywood is if you want to make a movie, go to Detroit. There is a future here. "

The Texas native has been doing his own talk show for the last seven years and he was a special guest on the Oprah show for five years prior. The Dr. Phil show is broadcast on 220 television markets nationwide.

RELATED STORY: Dr. Phil visits 'Youthville Detroit' and donates musical instruments

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

People are waiting in line to see Dr. Phil outside the perimeter of the Music Hall.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The first people in line for the Dr. Phil event.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The line wrapped around the entire building.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

A total of 1,500 people attended the speech in Detroit.

 

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