Kathy Kinney and Cindy Ratzlaff
Photo: Jacqueline Veissid
We'd like to offer you these steps that helped us walk through the fear of taking that new path.

Stop and assess the current situation.

Close your eyes and imagine yourself on the top of a high mountain where the wind is blowing. Look back over the first half of your life and, without overthinking it, choose a moment in your life that you've come to think of as particularly difficult or that most altered the course of your life. Now, letting go of the "could've, would've, should'ves" of that situation, try to imagine that moment as a large boulder blocking your path and a bright yellow road sign that says, "DETOUR." With your eyes still closed, turn your gaze to the left and envision a new path that you hadn't noticed before. Allow yourself to feel curious and excited about where it might lead. As you leave the original path and follow the new path, let yourself feel joyful about the adventure ahead.

Identify qualities you admire.

Get out a piece of paper and a pen. Write down the names of the 10 women you admire most. Again, don't ponder this. Write down your first thoughts. Then, write down the qualities or traits you most admire in these women. Read the list aloud. It might help you to look into a mirror while reading this list. Put a checkmark or star next to the qualities that resonate most with you as you read them.

What kind of woman do you want to be?

Now you knew this was coming. What qualities do you like best about yourself? Don't be shy. We've been told not to brag about ourselves since we were young girls. This isn't bragging. This is a conversation between you and you alone. So, go for it. Are there any words on the list of qualities you admire in other women that match the words you've used to describe yourself? If there are, chances are good that these words are core values for you. If none of them match, don't worry. This is a process, and in the end, you get to choose the words that you want to represent your core values. We recommend that you pick the four to six words that mean the most to you right now. At different times in your life, these words might change. That's okay. Don't get hung up on creating the perfect list. Just pick four to six words that you think are important to have with you on the next part of your journey.

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