A compact, feminist self-help manual that encourages women to stop trying to save others and instead save themselves.
Mobley (Agile!, 2014), a self-proclaimed “Wonder Woman,” draws on her own life experiences to show readers how they can use their “strength, intelligence and talents to be far more than the glue that holds life together” for other people. For much of her adult life, the author says, she was addicted to cleaning up others’ messes and was determined to prove she could do it all, including succeeding in the male-dominated technology industry and pushing herself to her physical limits with exercise. But it came at a cost, and stress and health problems eventually forced her to re-evaluate how she approached her life. Now a life coach, Mobley aims to help women give themselves permission to say “no” to needy friends, family, and co-workers. She also urges them to re-evaluate their impulses to act as rescuers or micromanagers. Once women stop dedicating so much time to tasks that “drain our personal energy,” she says, they can focus on discovering and fulfilling their own unique purposes. The idea that modern women are overburdened and overstretched isn’t revolutionary, but Mobley offers a slightly different spin on the topic. Most refreshingly, she sees her self-improvement tips as both a personal and political project, rejecting the tired idea that women as a group can improve their situation solely by changing their own thinking and behavior: “Want to be less tired? Get behind feminism,” she urges in a chapter on the ongoing fight for women’s rights. She’s also funny and self-deprecating, peppering her book with anecdotes from her own life in a friendly, engaging style. The result is a work that’s more like a heart-to-heart with a friend than an overwhelming to-do list. Even readers who are skeptical about the value of self-help tomes may warm to this effort.
A rallying cry for women who are tired of carrying the world on their shoulders.