In her first book, a former executive coach and certified change agent attempts to provide readers the tools they need to eliminate the situations that weigh them down.
Blackwell divides women into two categories: Mules, who tend to be the overburdened dumping ground for everyone else’s problems, and Queens, who maintain healthy relationships and are rewarded with friends and family who treat them like royalty. She targets typical areas in which this kind of divide occurs—family, relationships, work, society—but delves into more thought-provoking and less-mined territory as well, examining Victorian ideals, routine behavior and appearances. In each area, Blackwell defines the behavior of the Mule as opposed to the behavior of a Queen, using examples of real women from each category. The concrete examples help shed light on negative aspects of behavior while providing models to emulate. Moreover, Blackwell chooses examples from a wide spectrum: young singletons, happily married women, divorcees, mothers, career women, homemakers, middle-aged women, women in their later years and more. Nearly every reader will find a woman in this book to whom she can relate. Though Blackwell recognizes that most women—regardless of personal schedule and responsibilities—shoulder a caretaking role for those around them, she stresses that women need to take care of themselves first. Doing so will allow them to live richer, more satisfying lives, which can only benefit their spouses, children, co-workers, friends and extended family. It’s not enough to go to work, attend church and go home, she says; women should seek activities, events and people who can fulfill their emotional needs. Blackwell gives women permission to unapologetically stand up and demand the respect and courtesy they rightfully deserve. It’s a valuable lesson for women who want to have it all—family, career, success—even if they are still expected to do it all.
Blackwell’s inspiring call to action will help women get out of their own way on the path to fulfillment.