Queen of Your Own Life by Kathy Kinney and Cindy Ratzlaff

Queen of Your Own Life is an attitude, a way of life and a call to action for grown up women everywhere.

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Queen of Your Own Life

Courage | Back to Me Month

by Kathy Kinney

Courage.  Look in the mirror and repeat after us, “Today I will gather my courage and take care of myself.  I will speak up when I need to and set strong boundaries.  I am not selfish and am not doing this to hurt anyone, but to honor myself.”

When I was growing up I read Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte and Wuthering Heights by her sister Jane probably over a billion times.  An impressive feat I know, but the problem was that the message I took away from the books was that I must suffer and do it in silence.  Combine that attitude with my paralyzing low self esteem and I was working on my own personal tragic story.

I don’t really blame the Bronte sisters for my troubles.  In fact when Cindy and I were in our twenties living in NY we used to laugh and say that we were Lucy and Ethel Bronte.  It always led to a heated discussion over who was Lucy and who was Ethel but we had a good time talking about it.

The thing is, I spent years thinking that I needed to suffer – suffer for my art – suffer for my friends – suffer for my family.  I equaled being alive with suffering.  Bummer, huh?

So, now I think of myself as a recovering sufferer.  I have learned through the years to set strong boundaries and to speak up for myself.  It has required practice and support from trusted friends and a commitment from me to me.  I have a formal pact with myself to take care of myself no matter what.  It’s what I needed to do to stop the suffering and find the courage to protect myself.  It comes with the knowledge that I deserve to be cared for and that taking good care of myself does not make me selfish.  It makes me smart and a good example to other Jane Eyre addicts everywhere.

It’s a choice – life doesn’t have to be so hard.  So sayeth the Queen.

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