Ted Danson on 'The Good Place,' Larry David and the real reason for his back pain

Ted Danson has had a busy schedule since 1982.

The "Cheers" alum just wrapped the final season of hit NBC sitcom, "The Good Place," and although he's emotional about the show coming to an end, he's moving right along to his next project, a Tina Fey-produced comedy slated for NBC. It's no surprise, then, that he's also an advocate for Cigna and PLAN, its recommended program for reducing stress.

AOL's Jennifer Kline met with Danson, 71, at NYC meditation studio MNDFL to talk "The Good Place," Larry David's short temper and his wife's innate ability to diagnose the real cause of his arthritic flare-ups.

AOL: I didn't know if I was actually going to say this aloud to you, but you're a multigenerational crush. Like, people of all walks of life and all ages adore you. It sounds like stress management and meditating are a big part of why you're looking good and feeling good.

TED DANSON: And just being adored, that's so good for your skin.

That's true, you are universally beloved. What's that like, to have everybody like you?

Very misleading. I was actually thinking: You need to meditate not just when you're stressed, but when you think that you are the bee's knees. You need to stay in a balance. One of the hardest things about being an actor is you do walk around being "adored," or people try to let you believe that you're adored because they need you to show up at work. So it's a little bit of an unreal world. It's also lovely. People in airports are laughing and smiling when they see me because they remember something funny I was part of. That's a lovely ocean to swim in, but it's not real. That's not where I need to live and grow and be empowered to really be real.

Was there a period in time when you did feel like that was "real" and you had to get out of it?

I'm still in it. I'm loving it. No, sure. Spirituality usually comes with gravity pulling down on your body. The older I get, the more willing I am to be wise about things. I always admire younger people who [find balance].

31 PHOTOS
Ted Danson with wife Mary Steenburgen through the years
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Ted Danson with wife Mary Steenburgen through the years
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during 1993 ShoWest in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during 1994 ShoWest in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Mary Steenburgen and Ted Danson during 'Getting Even With Dad' New York City Premiere at Plaza Theater in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during American Film Institute Honors Jack Nicholson with 1994 Life Achievement Award at Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 01: Mary Steenburgen, Ted Danson (Photo by The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during 'That Thing You Do!' Los Angeles Premiere at Cineplex Odeon Century Plaza Cinema in Century City, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during 48th Annual Emmy Awards at Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during American Oceans Campaign's Partner Award at Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during 1998 Creative Coalition Spotlight Awards Gala at Pierre Hotel in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Ted Danson and wife Mary Steenburgen during Ted Danson Honored with a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)
Ted Danson and his wife Mary Steenburgen at the premiere of 'Castaway' at the Village Theater in Los Angeles, Ca. 12/7/00. (Photo by Kevin Winter/ImageDirect.)
Ted Danson and wife Mary Steenbergen arrive at the 28th Annual People's Choice Awards held at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Los Angeles, Ca., Jan. 13, 2001. (photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
399574 156: Actors Mary Steenburgen and Ted Danson speak during the 28th Annual Peoples Choice Awards at the Pasadena Civic Center January 13, 2002 in Pasadena, CA. (Photo by Vince Bucci/Getty Images)
Actor Ted Danson and wife actress Mary Steenbergen arrive at the 56th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards at the Shrine Auditorium. (Photo by Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty Images)
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen during 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' Season 5 Los Angeles Premiere - Red Carpet at Paramount Studios in Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by Lee Celano/WireImage)
NEW YORK CITY, NY - JULY 27: Ted Danson and Mary Steenbergen attend Sixth Annual More Wilhelmina 40+ Model Search Finals Event at Cipriani on July 27, 2005 in New York City. (Photo by Patrick McMullan/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - NOVEMBER 9: Actors Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen arrive at Oceana's 2006 Partners Award Gala at the Esquire House on November 9, 2006 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 1: Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen attend Geffen Playhouse holds backstage at the Geffen Gala at Geffen Playhouse on May 1, 2006 in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Chad Buchanan/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
PACIFIC PALISADES, CA - OCTOBER 5: Ted Danson (L) and Mary Steenburgen attend the Annual Oceana Partner's Awards Gala at the home of Jena and Michael King on October 5, 2007 in Pacific Palisades, California. (Photo by Trish Tokar/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 20: Actors Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen arrive on the red carpet of the Los Angeles Premiere of 'Four Christmases' held at the Grauman's Chinese Theater on November 20, 2008 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)
Actress Mary Steenburgen and actor, husband Ted Danson attend The Hollywood Walk of Fame ceremony honoring actress Mary Steenburgen. (Photo by Frank Trapper/Corbis via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - AUGUST 9: Mary Steenburgen and Ted Danson arrive at 'The Help' World Premiere at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater on August 9, 2011 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - SEPTEMBER 21: Actors Ted Danson (L) and Mary Steenburgen attend 'Beyond Hunger: A Place at the Table' charity event at Montage Beverly Hills on September 21, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 26: (L-R) Actors Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen attend the 20th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Awards Viewing Party at The City of West Hollywood Park on February 26, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for EJAF)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 24: (L-R) Mary Steenburgen and Ted Danson attend a performance by Mary Steenburgen at Vibrato Bar & Grill on November 24, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Tibrina Hobson/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - NOVEMBER 19: Actors Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen attends the premiere of Fox Searchlight's 'Wild' at AMPAS Samuel Goldwyn Theater on November 19, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 24: Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen arrive at the Los Angeles premiere of 'The Last Man On Earth' held at Big Daddy's Antique Shop on February 24, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Tran/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 14: Actress Mary Steenburgen (L) and actor Ted Danson attend Glamour Women Of The Year 2016 at NeueHouse Hollywood on November 14, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Glamour)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 17: (L-R) Actor Ted Danson and actress Mary Steenburgen attend the Oceana & The Walden Woods Project Present: Rock Under The Stars With Don Henley And Friends at Private Residence on July 17, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Earl Gibson III/Getty Images)
WESTWOOD, CA - MAY 06: Actor Ted Danson (L) and actress Mary Steenburgen attend Paramount Pictures' Premiere of 'Book Club' at the Regency Village Theatre on May 6, 2018 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21: Actors Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen attends the 24th Annual Screen Actors�Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
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You worked with a mostly younger cast on "The Good Place." Did they often try to mine you for "Cheers" anecdotes?

No. Here's what happens. They're sweet, and they love me, and I love them, and you find yourself being "included." When did I have to be "included"? They're very sweet. They treat me like an uncle. They're very embracing, but I can feel that uncle-ness. That cast is so sweet.

It's hard with sitcoms because after the show wraps, multiple actors from that same show can't really be put together again on a different production. But sometimes there are ways to still reunite on-screen. Could you see yourself working with any of them again? Is that something you've thought about?

I have. I would happily -- any of them. It is difficult because if you're associated together in a certain thing, it becomes hard [for audiences] to imagine them differently.

You're currently working with Tina Fey on a new show, right?

Yes. Very excited. And stressed, and my back hurts. I need to meditate. My wife [actress Mary Steenburgen] helps with that.

Oh, can she resolve back issues?

Yeah, by laughing at me and pointing out, "Ted. Your back goes out and your arthritis flares up whenever you start a new project." She's discovered recently that it's also whenever I end a project.

Would you say you're someone who understands how to live in the moment?

No. It's a struggle. I do know what it's like. I've experienced it enough times.

What are some times?

With my wife, Mary. With my children. While acting. But do I live in that moment? No, I don't. I talk a great game, but there isn't a human frailty or pratfall that I don't take on a daily basis, for real. I'm dreading walking out of here talking an enlightened fashion because I know that life... I'm going to step in a pile of karmic dog poo.

I've heard "Curb Your Enthusiasm"[Larry David's comedy series in which Danson appears as a fictionalized version of himself] is back in production.

He's editing.

He tends to complain about this and that. Have you ever told him to meditate?

That's funny.

Could he benefit from meditating?

No. It would destroy him.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

21 PHOTOS
Larry David through the years
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Larry David through the years
Actor Larry David attends 45th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on September 19, 1993 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
SEINFELD -- 'The Pilot: Part 1 & 2' Episode 23&24 -- Pictured: (l-r) Larry David, Jerry Seinfeld as Himself (Photo by Chris Haston/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
CALIFORNIA - 1998: (NO U.S. TABLOID SALES) On the set of the television series 'Seinfeld' Executive Producer and co-Creator Larry David prepares for the final episode in1998 on the set of the television comedy series in Studio City, CA. (Photo by David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images)
HOUSTON - APRIL 15: Larry David, co-creator of the television series Seinfeld, backstage during filming the last episodes, April 15, 1998 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images)
STUDIO CITY, CA - APRIL 3: (NO U.S. TABLOID SALES) Co-creators Jerry Seinfeld (second from left) and Larry David laugh while talking with actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus (back facing the camera) on set of the hit television show 'Seinfeld' during the last episodes, April 3, 1998 in Studio City, California. (Photo by David Hume Kennerly/ Getty Images)
399244 133: Actor and creator Larry David kisses his co-star Cheryl Hines backstage during the American Film Institutes AFI Awards 2001 at the Beverly Hills Hotel January 5, 2002 in Beverly Hills, CA. Davids show 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' won Comedy of the Year. (Photo by Vince Bucci/Getty Images)
Cheryl Hines and Larry David during AFI Awards 2001 - Press Room at Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - DECEMBER 25: Larry David watching the Los Angeles Lakers play the Saceamento Kings at Staples Center on December 25, 2002 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty Images)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Actor Larry David and wife Laurie Lennard arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Mortons on February 27, 2005 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
Dick Wolf and Larry David at The Museum of Television and Radio's annual Los Angeles gala to honor Ted Danson and Dick Wolf at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, Ca. Sunday, Sept. 29, 2002. Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images.
Larry David and Laurie Lennard during The 79th Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals at Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
Larry David and Laurie Lennard during The 79th Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals at Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Lester Cohen/WireImage)
Writer Larry David and wife Laurie Lennard arrive to the Producers Guild of Amercia Awards banquet at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles. (Photo by Axel Koester/Corbis via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 13: Comedian, Larry David attends the Phoenix Suns game against the New York Knicks on January 13, 2014 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2013 NBAE (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 08: Actor Larry David and executive producer Laurie Lennard attends the 'Fed Up' premiere held at the Pacfic Design Center on May 8, 2014 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)
Larry David attends the Lone Survivor Film Premiere In New York at Ziegfeld Theatre in New York City. ?? LAN (Photo by Lars Niki/Corbis via Getty Images)
THE VIEW - Larry David is the guest, Thursday, September 28, 2017 on ABC's 'The View.' 'The View' airs Monday-Friday (11:00 am-12:00 pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Lou Rocco/ABC via Getty Images) LARRY DAVID
THE VIEW - Larry David is the guest, Thursday, September 28, 2017 on ABC's 'The View.' 'The View' airs Monday-Friday (11:00 am-12:00 pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Lou Rocco/ABC via Getty Images) LARRY DAVID
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 27: Cheryl Hines and Larry David attend the 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' Season 9 premiere at SVA Theater on September 27, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jimi Celeste/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 27: Cazzie David and Larry David attend the 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' season 9 premiere at SVA Theater on September 27, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Pont/FilmMagic)
TODAY -- Pictured: Larry David on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 -- (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
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