Tuesday, August 2, 2011

How to be a Princess....Five Easy Steps

Being a princess is not about how you look or what you wear--well, maybe just a bit--but most importantly being a princess is about how you feel and what you offer the world! Let your inner princess shine!...........paraphrased from Disney’s Princess Protection Program

Assume an Attitude of Gratitude

“You are entitled to food, clothing, shelter, and medical attention. Anything else you get is a privilege.” Not exactly written for the princess-in-training, this message was penned for hard-nosed criminals the likes of Al Capone, Robert Stroud, and “The Birdman of Alcatraz.”. I like it. Being a princess is not about the lovely gowns, shining jewels and admirers falling at your feet. Well. Those things are nice, but they’re extras. As long as you have food to eat and something to wear and a tiara over your head, you should call it good. Thank the heavens profusely for even this little bit and take those blessings then and spread them out into the world for others so that they, too, may have food to eat, something to wear, and tiaras over their heads.

Life is not always what we wish it, but it is life nonetheless. We can choose to look for the good and focus on the beauty and leave the ugly lay where it will, or we can choose to wallow in our royal misery. It is the job of a princess to set the example, to teach, to lead. How else to do that but to say, “I may have twenty pounds to lose, but, hey, I have food to spare, I am not hungry,” “I may have lost my job, but now I have the opportunity to return to school and to spend more time with my kids,” or “Even though this is the most excruciatingly, most unbearably hottest day ever, it is green and lovely and filled with flowers and birds and butterflies and such.”

You should know that gratitude has been shown to improve health and well-being. Those who regularly give thanks for the blessings in their lives live longer and are healthier while they’re here. Not exactly boas and pearls, I know, but quite a perk nonetheless.

Adjust Your Tiara

I’ve heard it said that it’s not what happens, but how you react to what happens. Every princess has a bad tiara day now and then, a day when nothing can go right, a day when life seems all wrong, a day when the crown is just a bit crooked. I am reminded of that childhood classic Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. You will have these days. Check back to lesson number one.

Hone in on Your Superpowers

I could tell you all day what’s wrong with you. What if I told you, instead, what’s great about you?! Why do we princess types insist on beating ourselves up for what we suck at? Why don’t we ever say to ourselves, “Oh, p’shaw, that is for delegating. Sure, I totally suck at it, but somebody else does it really, really well. And they LOVE to do it. Now this, this is what I do best!! This is my very special job in all of the entire kingdom.”

A bit too arrogant sounding, perhaps? Not at all. If we’re going to a royal potluck and it’s all about dessert, you’re bringing the pie. I can’t make pie for shit. But, hey, I got the brownies. Why eat crap? We each have our specialties. If we focus on those, the food will be delish! Same with superpowers.

Believe in the Pixie Dust

Peter Pan: All it takes is faith and trust. Oh! And something I forgot.
Peter Pan: Dust!
Wendy, John: Dust?
Michael: Dust?
Peter Pan: Yep, just a little bit of pixie dust.

Hey, if it works for Tinkerbell, it’s good enough for me.

Fake it ‘til You Make It

Act as if. You are a princess already. You may not think it, but just pretend until you do. I know that sometimes you don’t believe you’re capable of such grand work. I know that sometimes you doubt yourself, you question, you cower in the corner beating your head against the wall wondering what the hell you were thinking to ever assume you could possibly affect any sort of positive change on such a huge worldy issue as this……ok, maybe that’s just me. But sometimes, I know, you’re scared shitless. Pardon my un-princess-like language. But, come on. We have work to do. Even for a princess like yours truly, life is not always all about me. I know, mais c’est vrai. A true princess is about her people (did you read the quote?). A true princess has work to do.

This work cannot be done if the focus is on the pretty face in the mirror. Nothing positive can come from dwelling on your fears and weaknesses. I learned once, in sales training, that sometimes you just have to get out of your own way. Sometimes you have to look at what needs to be done and say to heck with it, I can do this. No matter how difficult, I have the resources. Sometimes you just have to put those big girl panties on and do what you know in your heart you’re capable of doing.

As a sister princess reminds me every day (I keep her words posted to my fridge for those times I forget about that tiara on top of my head):

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever, but the cautious do not live at all. From now on you'll be traveling the road between who you think you are and who you can be. The key is to allow yourself to make the journey."…….from The Princess Diaries


  1. I needed an attitude adjustment! :) Thanks!

  2. I wish I could "draw" a little crown with text!!