We Are All 'Famous Firsts'!
      by Gail Carr Feldman, PhD
Madeline Albright is the first woman Secretary of State. My friend Roberta Ramo is the first woman president of the American Bar Association. Miss Piggy is the first porcine woman to become an international star. These are clearly exciting times for women, and yet most of us will not become "the first woman" to achieve political or public stardom.
The majority of women will not receive public recognition at all in this lifetime. (A friend of mine insists that she had too much recognition in previous lives, the kind that led to untimely deaths, so she was "laying low" in this lifetime!)
And yet, I encourage you to face the fact that we are all :famous first." Our mission is to blaze some new trail, reach for a higher star, or discover a previously unknown island in the atoll of our existence.
When I first pitched a self-help book idea to an agent, she said, "There's too much competition in the self-help field. Your name would have to be a 'household word' in order to get that published." I laughed loudly. My name isn't even a household word in my own house! It's usually a name connected with a request like, "Mom, can you do this for me?" "Honey, can you take car of that?" Or sometimes, I'm no name at all, merely an invisible adverse cause: "Is that what we're having for dinner?" directed disdainfully into the air around me.
A country singer friend of mine once remarked, "Statistically, Gail, I'd be more likely to be struck by lightning than to become a famous recording artist."
"Maybe so," I teased, "but you could begin by entertaining the idea of becoming the first famous country singer to have been struck by lightning!" (Remember, it's the thought that counts! So be careful. Thoughts can manifest.) Too many of us live what I call, "lies of limitation." Claiming our personal power means thinking of and practicing and believing in the possibilities! It's time to define ourselves and our lives in brand new ways, pregnant with possibilities, ways that bring us hints of how to become a "famous first."

"The universe conspires to give you  what you want."

Bette Midler commented recently that "work is a process of self-definition." Using work in the broadest sense, it is how we live our lives, the attitudes of curiosity, confidence and caring that we bring to every endeavor, that will ultimately give shape, meaning and definition to who we are.
When we place our attention and the energy we contribute to the process will open automatic doors of possibilities. The mere intention to bring more success (define that thought!) and joy into our lives is the deciding variable. Physician Larry Dossey tells us that the best predictor of survival across the next decade of a person's life is what the person thinks about her health! Family, health history and risk factors play a less important role. Smokers, for example, double their risk of dying in the next ten years, but a negative response to the question, "what do you think about your health?" produces a seven-fold risk of dying!
It is time to think of yourself , to define yourself as a person of powerful possibilities. It is time to focus on success in every area of your life and realize that "The universe conspires to give you what you want." This spring, be among the first to blossom in some new way, even some small way, like trying a recipe you've thought was too complicated, or learning to program your VCR.
By the end of this year, bloom in a bigger way. Take a course, develop expertise in some area that draws your interest. (I'm going to work on becoming a household word in my own house.) It's time to know, in the deepest, calmest place within your heart, that you are a "famous first."