Just like Markle, Obama found herself thrust into a high-profile lifestyle after her husband was elected president in 2008, and while the Duchess of Sussex has likely received an abundance of advice from palace staff, the former first lady had a few words of her own to share with the soon-to-be-mom.
“Like me, Meghan probably never dreamt that she'd have a life like this, and the pressure you feel -- from yourself and from others -- can sometimes feel like a lot," Obama told the British magazine Good Housekeeping in interview excerpts published Monday. “So my biggest piece of advice would be to take some time and don't be in a hurry to do anything.”
“I spent the first few months in the White House mainly worrying about my daughters, making sure they were off to a good start at school and making new friends before I launched into any more ambitious work. I think it's okay -- it's good, even -- to do that,” she added.
After officially being welcomed into the British Royal Family and being minted the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle was quick to jump head first into her royal duties. Just days after saying “I do” to Prince Harry at St. George’s Chapel, she made her first public appearance at a Garden Party in honor of Prince Charles’ birthday. She went on to make several other appearances after that, and even recently embarked on her first international tour, all taking place in under a year.
Although Obama may advise Markle to take things a little more slowly, she also encouraged her to pursue issues she feels passionate about. Obama herself pioneered a number of initiatives during her eight years in the White House.
“What I'd say is that there's so much opportunity to do good with a platform like that -- and I think Meghan can maximize her impact for others, as well her own happiness, if she's doing something that resonates with her personally," she said.
The Duchess has already become involved with a number of projects since joining the Royal family earlier this year. In September, she helped a group of women affected by the Grenfell Tower fire create a cookbook, with proceeds going towards helping them run the Hubb Community Kitchen.
Markle has also frequently expressed her interest in female empowerment, something she was passionate about prior to becoming a royal.