Spring Update

I discovered The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron in December and to say I’m loving it is an understatement. The basic premise: We are all creative and we are all meant to share our creativity with the world. The book takes you on a 12-week journey to help you nurture your own creativity. (Full disclosure: I’ve been stuck on chapter 8 for about a month.)

Not surprisingly, I loved reading this interview with Julia Cameron in the New York Times. I couldn’t help but notice a hint of Impostor Syndrome when she talked about how lucky she was to have support from her husband and her ex-husband; a hallmark of Impostor Syndrome is avoiding taking credit for your success chalking it up to good luck instead.

If you haven’t read about the Bethesda, MD high school girls who came together and spoke out against the rating system their male classmates created, go read it now. These girls give me so much hope for the future—and so do the boys. This story reinforces my conviction that amazing things happen when women come together.

I had the chance to present a workshop, “Defeating the Impostor Within to Reach Your Goals” at the University of Denver’s Annual Women’s Conference and it was a blast. I love connecting with women (and the one awesome male attendee!) to help normalize the fear we ALL feel when we’re out of our comfort zones.

This weekend I’m presenting “Ready, Set Goals: Lessons From an Endurance Athlete on How Women Can Cross Any Finish Line,” a workshop I designed for a local women’s cycling club. I’m walking that line between trying to make it awesome and not being a total perfectionist about it. Julia Cameron (yes, we’re talking about her again) says it perfectly: “Perfectionism is not a quest for the best. It is a pursuit of the worst in ourselves, the part that tells us that nothing we do will ever be good enough – that we should try again.”

If watching shows counts as doing, I’m putting unapologetically binge-watching Working Moms in this category. This Netflix series is the most honest (if overly privileged) portrayal of motherhood I’ve ever seen on TV. Every episode had me laughing out loud, and most had me crying, too.

So far I’ve read 18 books this year. (Are we connected on Goodreads yet??) My favorites so far are:
Inheritance by Dani Shapiro
If you’re a Shapiro fan like I am, you will absolutely love this one. It answers so many questions that come up in her previous memoirs while bringing up so many new ones. It’s the story of the author’s late-in-life discovery that the dad she grew up with was not her biological father. This was my book club selection because it’s overflowing with topics for discussion.

Maid by Stephanie Land
Beautifully written in language that was plain, yet perfectly vivid. (I’m not into flowery and Land is definitely not flowery). It was the ultimate heroine’s journey while shining a much-needed light on what it’s like to be poor in America. 

Dryland by Nancy Stearns Bercaw
I bought this one because it was a Kindle bargain and I needed something to read on a flight and it exceeded all my expectations. This memoir was the story of a former champion swimmer’s addiction, isolation, and ultimately, her redemption.

I read things besides memoirs by middle-aged white women, I swear. (I also enjoyed Cal Newport’s Digital Minimalism and I’m Still Here by Austin Channing Brown)

This podcast was hard to listen to yet I couldn’t stop. Produced by NPR, it explores the way Larry Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics team doctor abused young women for years; how it happened, why he got away with it for so long, and what it did to the victims and their families.

The Dropout
This one checked all the boxes: compelling, concise, and (a rare one) enjoyable to both me AND Dan. It’s the story of the rise and inevitable fall of Elizabeth Holmes, the founder of Theranos. (Thanks to my good friend Deana for the recommendation!)

4 thoughts on “Spring Update

  1. emilys72016 says:

    You are such a rock star, Pam! Just wanted to say how much I love Dani Shapiro, and I really enjoyed the book Maid as well. Your blog is excellent!

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