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June 20, 2013

Book Review: Becoming Princess Charming

A few weeks ago I was contacted about potentially reviewing a book that seemed to about empowering women to achieve their goals through self-reflection.  Of course I said yes because I love reading and any book that actually helps one reach their goals is a win.  Not to mention I've been struggling with being stuck in a few areas of my own life and this book's description was all about getting unstuck in a few major areas.  Just to make sure I don't misquote it here's the synopsis that was provided in the initial email:

Do you ever feel “stuck” or like you’re going through life as some kind of pseudo version of yourself? Are you ready to realize your greater potential - and live like a princess in your very own fairy tale? 
In this engaging, easy-to-read book, intuitive healer and spiritual mentor, Morgan McKean, takes you through a journey of self-discovery, so that you can create your life the way you want it to be. Each chapter represents a personal strategy session that can be used alone, or in conjunction with the other chapters, as a way to expand your mind, while setting the mental and emotional foundation for creating your happily ever after. 
Covering topics like Fun, Food, Fitness, Men, Money, and Meaning, Morgan shares her spiritual insights and real world techniques for making you the princess of your very own fairytale, called LIFE.

Because there's a little part in each of us that wants to Become Princess Charming, Morgan is offering you this unique opportunity to create your very own fairytale. 

The book was written by Morgan McKean (click here for more details) and even though it's around 300 pages it's a relatively quick read, I covered it during an insomnia fit one night, that provides you with a variety of things in each chapter.  It focuses on women she's already worked with by giving you examples of how some of us arrive in our stuck state with each of the categories, explores how to make our view of the world more productive for us as well as encourages exploration of what it would take to get there for you.  A lot of the book's focus is really about changing how we see the world and our potential in it.  Yes the good old power of positive thinking.  That's easier to achieve when we are feeling great about the world but this gets into trying to do it when things aren't working as well as we would like and how to move beyond that.

Some sections worked better for me than others, namely food, fun and money.  I have an awkward relationship with food sometimes.  I rarely eat to excess but when I do it's normally because I'm stressed or disappointed and that just starts a nasty cycle until I break through it.  And I have known for quite sometime that I have blocked my own avenues to have fun because of fear about the expense of the things that I really like to do.  Even though a flight to Vegas to catch a Prince show wouldn't have broken the bank.  The timing of it, near Christmas, in my brain meant I would be short changing relatives for gifts and the timing of our checks being off said no nice lady you have responsibilities.  And I do but all that's meant is me being frustrated because the people I'm responsible for don't seem to cut back on what they see as fun to help me out if that makes sense.  Which leads to me being resentful and continuing the stuckness.  My money and fun are linked together too but the other aspect of that is investing in myself to potentially make more income so the fun things aren't distant ideas and can come to fruition easier.

All of that is not to say the fitness, men and meaning sections are not relevant they just weren't as applicable to where I am stuck at the moment.  I enjoyed the exercises at the end of each chapter but my therapist brain, since that's what I do for a living till I start my new job ha, wanted a bit more of them--possibly a section to revisit after you made the changes to compare how you thought it would look and what it actually manifested itself as in your life.  I like exercises as they get your mind in the thought process it needs to approach in order to see if something can actually be different.

Many of you know I'm in the process of house hunting long distance and have been frustrated repeatedly by people not getting back to me and getting moved before the job officially starts so I can at least be unpacked.  It was driving me nuts and ratcheting up my contacts wasn't doing much to make a dent in getting help.  Well this will seem unrelated but as part of the moving I've been storing the DVDs in a large storage case so we weren't packing all of these cases that at this stage no one really needs and take up a ton more room than a case that can hold 320 dvds.  After hunting online I found out that Best Buy had one on sale and appeared to still have some in stock at a local store.  I ran out to get it among other things for the nice lady that lives with me and drives me slightly crazy, known as mom, and was quite frustrated when no one in the store could find it and figured it would just add to the craptastic luck I've had with realtors as I had called one that morning and hadn't heard a thing at by noon when I left for the store.  I was almost out of the store when I said let's just try to make this trip not wasted if possible.  The Geek Squad guy was able to order it for me and get it shipped to my house for free.  He rang it up and to my amazement the total price was less than what I had seen online when I left home.  Well that's because the store had marked it down 5 bucks less than the online price and that's what I paid.  I figured if nothing else that was a win for the day and I was going to believe that my luck would change with the housing front soon.  When I got back home after errands, a house I saw last week was marked down 15K so I said screw it and put in a contact request with the realtor.  I hadn't heard from her by the close of business but they were an hour ahead of me so a morning call would be fine.  Nope she called mid pizza preparation and asked me what I was looking for, what I would be willing to pay, deadlines and preferences and unlike her counterparts didn't seem freaked out by me being out of state and trying to relocate.  She told me she'd be in touch soon and I hung up feeling fantastic.  I ate my pizza, got cranky with the Voice results and went to bed on time for the first time in a long time because I wasn't as stressed about this house hunting thing and started to put more positive energy out there that all would come to fruition.  Turns out after I went to bed she sent me like 20 houses that mostly hit on all of our discussion that I showed to mom the next day and we agreed on about 5 to look further into.

I'm not saying that the results would have been different if my brain hadn't switched over to this can and will happen because I want and need it do.  The fact that they were different and that I quit thinking this person isn't going to call me back could totally be a coincidence but as a lifelong pessimist to my exes, realist to me lol, it felt better to not be in a negative head space about my goals.  That's a really dumbed down synopsis of what I felt the book was about but really the book makes an overall good point.  How can you be your own princess if you don't believe in your fairy tale?  If you discount, dissuade, dismiss all of the things you want in your life best believe they probably won't happen for no other reason than your energy won't allow them to do so.  

If you are intrigued go ahead and head over to Morgan's SITE and you can purchase the book, sign up for other services and learn how to host a Princess Party for us big girls if you are so inclined.  For you new era princess in training you'll be thrilled to see the book in kindle format.  For an older era princess to be like myself I did miss flipping through physical pages but I totally recognize I'm a bit of throwback in that regard.  I do still love a good bookstore and library--ahh book smell lol.  Final thoughts, if you are stuck in area and don't know why or how to get unstuck I think this can be a great tool to help you along provided you are willing to learn how to refocus your thinking to make the changes you want in your life.  I think it would be great in a therapy setting if I just remembered to print off the pages in time which yeah can be a problem sometimes ha.  Okay enough of my babbling, I'll be back later with another post.

Selected questions from the Q&A with Morgan:

Question :: What inspired you to write Becoming Princess Charming?

McKean :: Well, after a couple of false starts in my twenties, and a lot of resistance to writing anything longer than a blog post or magazine article in my early thirties, last Summer, as I was contemplating how I could best share my spiritual ideas for fabulous living, as I believe that when we understand how magnificent we really are, we can create our life the way we want it to be, I received over eight requests, and two demands, from clients and friends, in less than a two week period, to write a book.

Then, as I finally sat down to write, and the book was essentially pouring out of me, I began to see that I was finally at a place in my own life, where I could allow myself to be the catalyst or messenger to deliver these ideas.  And, when the book was completed in less than fourteen weeks, having very little to do with me personally, I really got the message, it was time.

Question :: What can people expect from this six-session guidebook?

McKean :: I believe that living the life of “Princess Charming,” is first about learning to love and accept yourself, and then, being able to create your fairy tale, or life, the way you want it to be.  Accordingly, I’ve broken this guidebook down into six sessions, including; fun, food, and fitness, and men, money, and meaning, so that you can see who you are being in each of these areas of your life.

In each “session” with me, you’ll go on a trip of self-discovery as you learn more about your fear-based ideas and thinking, and develop the ability to identify old programing and limited beliefs that are currently holding you back from living your life the way you want to be.  Additionally, through out each chapter, and at the end of the session, you will have access to real-world exercises and new ideas that will help you shift your perspective, or expand your awareness so that you can create your happily ever after.

My dedication to embarking on this journey of self-discovery and spirituality, as well as doing the work daily, has transformed every area of my life for the better.  I’ve learned to have more compassion, love, understanding, and appreciation for who I am, what I’m capable of, and how what I really believe about myself and the world around me influences how I experience our physical reality.

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