For A Little Inspiration Read This Little Book

What is a mom suppose to do after dedicating all her time and energy to her family? Is the empty-nest looming in your near future? Are you ready to be yourself again?

I've started to ask myself these questions lately, and was lucky to find help answering them in Maria Shriver's book titled Just Who Will You Be? Big Question, Little Book, Answer Within. Only 91 pages long, it's a very quick read and quick to inspire. Shriver was the keynote speaker at her nephew's high school graduation, and the advise she professed that day resulted in this little gem.

Preparing your children to join the real world as productive, compassionate and successful citizens is a full time job; once they leave the nest, are you ready to fill in the empty time slots once occupied by carpools, homework and PTA meetings?

This can be a daunting prospect for most of us who have been disconnected from the work force for a long time, and like Shriver, find ourselves feeling lost after our parenting “job” is done. In her book, Maria tells us she had to leave her news reporting position at NBC to join her husband, newly-elected Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger, in Sacramento. She left behind her identity and her life's work, and had to re-invent herself again.

In the book, she relates how she was struck by statements her children made about her change in careers which stopped her dead in her tracks:

“Not too long ago, I was whining to my teenage daughter. 'I don't know what I want to be when I grow up!' She took me by the shoulders, looked me dead in the eye, and said, 'I hate to break it to you, Mom, but this is it for you! You are all grown up! You're cooked!'”

Not wanting to accept she was washed-up, she set out on a self-discovery path, and realized she still had much to offer — maybe not as a journalist anymore, but as someone else.

I've learned that asking ourselves not just what we want to be, but who we want to be is important at every stage of our lives … ” wrote Maria realizing that her self-worth was based on her accomplishments, and not on the person she was.

I recommend this book not only to those whose careers are taking a turn, but also to moms (dads, aunts, uncles, grand parents and friends too!) who are looking to get back the ambition, creativity, meaning or inspiration to start doing something fulfilling for themselves again.

Aspire to Inspire Before you Expire

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