When women come together in one place
to share their experiences, their dreams
and wisdom, a very special resonancea
powerful energyis created.
Marion Woodman, psychologist
What if you could assemble
hundreds of wise and accomplished women
and girls who've lived in the past two
centuries, and just listen to them share
their pearls of wisdom? You would probably
come away awed by their ideas, amazed
by the similarities of some of their
observations, and eager to try out their
strategies yourself. Well, here's your
This book is filled with
positive advice and perceptive observations
from more than four hundred exceptional
women and girls. Every included quote
was selected for its ability to inspire
you. Some of these "pearls" are witty
and entertaining, some are brilliant,
and some are just plain helpful. Many
are suggestions that women wish they'd
been given when they were girls. These
powerful quotes can change the way you
see yourself and perceive the world.
The people quoted in this
book are young and old, from the past
and the present. They're scientists,
musicians, business executives, activists,
writers, athletes, actors, doctors,
Internet pioneers, artists, moms, world
leaders, daughters, and more. What they
have to share can help you:
Accept your body
Handle bad moods
Break out of ruts
Build good relationships
Achieve great feats
Of course, as a woman
named Yula Moses once observed, "Wisdom
is harder to DO than it is to know."
It's easy to get all fired up, but putting
ideas into practice takes effort.
However, knowing WHAT
you can do, and being reminded that
YOU CAN DO IT, is the fuel you need
to get the fire started and keep it
If you read this book
from beginning to end, you'll see that
it has a natural progression, but you
can skip around, too. If you're looking
for perspective on a certain issue,
pick the chapter that most closely seems
to match. Close your eyes and open the
book to a random page when you want
a little mood boost. Or read a few quotes
every day. Soon, the most meaningful
ideas for you will become familiar and
lodge themselves in your brain, where
you can recall them anytime.
Having "inherited" this
valuable wisdom, you'll be better prepared
to make any decisions, get through any
situations, and live your life with
conviction, enthusiasm, and joy.
I love [quotes] because
it is a joy to find thoughts one might
have, beautifully expressed with much
authority by someone recognizedly wiser
Marlene Dietrich, actor, 1901-1992
When you wake up in the
morning. do you make a mental note to
enjoy the day ahead of you?
It's strange, but when
you're a kid, there is plenty of life
to enjoy, because time seems to pass
very slowly. But guess what? As you
grow up, time seems to speed
up. "I always remember my grandmother
saying, 'Gosh, time flies,'" says Carol
Bartz, president of a large furniture
company. "And I thought, what is she
talking about? Well, let me tell you,
times flies...I would have liked to
have had that wisdom a little younger."
That's why it's important to savor your
time as a girl and a young woman, and
not just wait for the future.
There are so many things
to enjoy about being young. For example,
summer vacation. When you get older,
unless you become a teacher or college
professor, you can't take the summer
off. And your body. Physically, you
will probably be stronger and healthier
than you are right now.
So when you wake up,
remind yourself to appreciate the day
as it's passing by. Enjoy everything
from the mundane activities, such as
brushing your teeth, to the exciting
events, such as a surprise birthday
party for a friend. You've got a whole
wonderful dayand potentially a
whole wonderful lifestretching
out ahead of you.
* * *
It's so quiet in the early morning
darkness...Then the sun breaks...Fingers
of light on the horizon...[I] just want
to start singing or shout, "Glory Hallelujah!"
Nora Dott Warren, shrimper
I rise from sleep and say: Hail to
Come down to me, my beautiful unknown.
Jessica Powers, poet, nun 1905-1988
Surely it's better to sleep late in
the morning only when it's a rare privilege,
not an everyday occurrence.
Lauren Bacall, actor
I have come to understand that every
day is something to cherish.
Kerri Strug, gymnast
With the new day comes new strength
and new thoughts.
Eleanor Roosevelt, first lady,
Each day I look for a kernel of excitement.
In the morning, I say: "What is my exciting
thing for today?" Then, I do the day.
Barbara Jordan, lawyer, congresswoman,
I wake expectant, hoping to see a new
Annie Dillard, writer
The preciousness of every ordinary
moment is emphasized with every tick
of the clock. Isn't it a magnificent
Bel Kaufman, writer, educator
Normal day, let me be aware of the
treasure you are. Let me not pass you
by in quest of some rare and perfect
Mary Jean Irion, writer, teacher
Now go take the day.
Laura Schlessinger, radio talk-show
© 1999 by Catherine Dee