Gwyneth Paltrow: It Wasn’t My Idea to Call My Divorce Announcement a “Conscious Uncoupling”

Gwyneth Paltrow Defends "Conscious Uncoupling"
Gwyneth Paltrow opened up to Fast Company about Goop and the origins of the phrase "conscious uncoupling"  Steve Sands/Getty Images

Gwyneth Paltrow doesn't mind being the butt of a few jokes — after all, she gets the last laugh. Speaking about her famed lifestyle company, Goop, in a new interview with Fast Company, the Iron Man 3 star said she actually welcomes the chatter about her brand, because it means people are reading and engaging with her ideas.

"I always like it when there's a big response to something because it tells me, 'Oh we've touched a nerve here, this is really interesting,'" the Oscar winner, 42, told the mag. "There are a lot of media companies that would die to have the kind of response that we get from our content."

Take, for example, the instant (and widespread) reaction to the actress' "conscious uncoupling” announcement in March 2014, when she revealed that she and her husband, Coldplay singer Chris Martin, were separating after more than 10 years of marriage. The phrase "conscious uncoupling" went viral immediately afterward, and has been repeated — and mocked — a thousand times over since. 

Paltrow says the blog title was the work of her editorial director, Elise Loehnen, who borrowed the "conscious uncoupling" term from a psychologist. (The phrase wasn't in the actress' actual announcement, just the headline.) "When I announced that I was separating on the website, [Loehnen] titled the piece 'Conscious Uncoupling' and I had no idea," she told Fast Company

The response was swift, and largely negative, but Paltrow wasn't fazed. "When something like that happens, I think everybody is like, 'Oh, s–t,'" she shared. "I just tell them that I think we are creating interesting discussions." 

Indeed, the mom of two stands by Goop and everything it stands for, even as critics dismiss it as pretentious or out of touch.

"I do think a lot of the misperception comes from people who haven't actually gone on the site, because a lot of the things you see or hear, we're like, 'We never said that, never wrote that, that's not the price point, or this was totally out of context,'" she explained. "It seems that when people really engage, they understand who we are and what we're doing."

Admittedly, Paltrow herself wasn't sure what she was doing when the site first began as a weekly newsletter in 2008. In the years since, she's worked to really develop Goop, which is now among several lifestyle brands created by actresses. (Reese Witherspoon's Draper James and Blake Lively's Preserve are among its contemporaries.)

"I think it was a lot of idiot savant-ness," Paltrow told Fast Company. "I really wasn't aware, from a trending perspective, where the Internet was going, or what was going to ­happen — that newsletters would become something that ­everybody did. I sort of just got lucky."

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!

Want stories like these delivered straight to your phone? Download the Us Weekly iPhone app now!