What does it mean to be real? It means being true to your self, allowing yourself the time to get to know who that woman really is, and staying true to that real you when you’re tested. When is the last time you allowed yourself that opportunity? It’s essential and it’s at the heart of my nonfiction series of books for women. To have a happy life, everything you do needs to be based on the authentic Real You.

Real means going with your gut, listening to your instincts. To play and laugh. Real means that it’s not about how loud you talk; it’s about what you say and meaning it. Real is understanding that even business is personal today. That relationships matter. Real is behaving online the same as you would offline, and vice versa.

Real people give to others, share information freely and laugh out loud.

It’s believing in creativity, and being creative whenever possible. Real is inclusive, full of potential, and deep. Real is about being successful, strong and powerful, without taking anyone else’s power away. Real is raising empowered, creative and caring children. Real is creating a writing career that feels true.

In the past, it was easier to be a fake,less than fully genuine, less than fully present. You could be one thing at the office, at school, at a meeting, and another at home. With transparency and the digital age, you have no choice. You’ve got to be real.

Being real requires you to be authentic. To listen to your deeper self, your inner voice. This is where the soul lies, the real you. Today, more than ever, when change is the constant, the best defense is being real in every aspect of your life. Be home. Be at work. Be present. Be real.

Ready to get started?

Only you can make real, positive change in your life.

Only you -The Real You- can shake the bad patterns, let go of the stuff that keeps you from moving forward. And only you can decide it’s time. To get real. To get going. To start that business. To quit smoking. To start your novel. To stand up for yourself. To be the mom you’ve always wanted to be, not the mom you think you should be. To live the life of your dreams. It’s not easy, but it’s doable! I know. I’m a mom, an author, and an entrepreneur. I love it all, because it works for me. The Real me. My life isn’t a blueprint for yours, nor is it perfect — but it’s amazing. And yours can be, too.

But only if you can discover -and stay true to- The Real You. And remember, it’s a work in process for all of us. Every phase of life is a matter of time, transitions are an opportunity to redefine ourselves. I find myself looking in the mirror and realizing with no uncertainty that I will continue to redefine my life, my family, my brand and my work. That’s the essence of growth. It’s what makes it fun to live this wonderful life.

Here’s my Real You chart After you read whichever section appeals to you, and hopefully the associated book, I hope you’ll consider creating your own Real You chart. Whether you’re starting a business, raising a child or launching or refining a writing career, I hope you’ll find some inspiration in these pages.

I’m living my dream, and I’ve put it into action. Sure it’s not easy. And those one-star reviews can really sting, but life is about focusing on the positive and ignoring the snarks.

If your dream still hasn’t come true, what’s stopping you? Put your real you into action and shine.