New Girl star Zooey Deschanel has long been defined by her adorable charm, but her totally sensible outlook on motherhood, body image, and the Internet will remind you: There's more to this singer/actress/producer than long-lashed quirkiness. Here's a sneak peek at what our May cover girl had to say.
How her little girl, Elsie Otter, made her grow up…sorta: "I've never really felt like an adult. But I think it's a huge accomplishment to have a child, so maybe I feel like an adult for that reason."
On the importance of women supporting other women: "Growing up, girls get all of these cues that you're not supposed to be aggressive. You can't be bossy. If you're assertive, you're bitchy. There are a lot of negative things that are said about women who are powerful, and I think that it makes for a climate where women end up being inadvertently passive-aggressive toward one another, and sometimes trying to pull each other down."
On pulling back on her career a little after having her daughter and how it helped them both: "I've slowed things down a bit. I think it's good for your whole self- your creative self, your professional self, and just your soul- to take a little time for yourself and your family. You can spend your whole life going after things, but I think you risk missing out on some really powerful self-reflection."
Why mothers should not be scrutinized to look like their pre-baby selves immediately after birth: "To expect someone to look like her pre-baby self immediately is odd. Because you just grew a human and then birthed that human-there's a lot that needs to go back to where it was. All your organs move around, for chrissakes!"
For more of Zooey's words of wisdom, pick up your copy of REDBOOK's May issue, on newsstands April 19.