Your Truest Self

Your Truest Self by Janice Lynne Lundy is subtitled 'embracing the woman you are meant to be'. That is the first thing to know about this book - it is solidly aimed at women only. The dialogue throughout that book makes that pretty clear. The second thing to know is that this is not a 'self help' book in the traditional sense of the phrase. Instead, Lundy has interviewed twelve different women and discusses why each one has something to teach us.

It is unlikely that all twelve stories will resonate with you perfectly - which is fine. Every one of us is different. A story you adore might be one your friend just doesn't get - but she is in love with a different story. That's the beauty of having multiple points of view presented.

Many of the usual feel-better systems are described and encouraged in here. You are told to meditate, to focus on your breathing. You are told to journal, to help you remake your life. Observe what you do, pay attention to what you say. Create a three ring binder of your inspirations. If you feel strong emotions coming on, "surf" them, let the wave come and then pass you by. Avoid network news with its doom and gloom designed to bring in ratings. Find a more focused way - paper, internet - to read your information.

There is the traditional "you must take care of yourself in order to be able to take care of others." Schedule down time, ask for help, learn to say "I am enough" without constantly craving "fixes" to yourself.

Even people who have already heard all of these messages could do with a reminder every once in a while! The real life stories told in the book are quite inspiring and encourage you to take another attempt down that path.

I found the writing style to be a bit wordy for my tastes, and I found some of Lundy's editorializing to be a bit much. I would have much preferred for the women's stories to shine through with their own voices, without Lundy interjecting her own opinions. Still, she did track down twelve fascinating women and I enjoyed reading about their stories.

Still, those are minor complaints, and I would definitely recommend the book to my female friends.

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