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Book Review: Master the Genie Within: Uncover, Embrace, and Celebrate the Real You by Gladys M. Anderson

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Master the Genie Within is a new book that begins by asking the reader what mask she is wearing in life, why she is wearing that mask, is it benefiting her, and whether she should change it for another—her true face, her true authentic self. Examples of masks women wear include the People Pleaser, Wonder Woman, or the Loner. We hide behind these masks out of fear or as a way to get our needs met, but in the process we hide our true selves. Author Gladys Anderson advocates that, instead, it is now time for our inner Genie to shine through.

Women are especially prone to hiding their true identities as they focus on their roles as wives, mothers, and people who set aside their own needs and goals for their families. While Master the Genie Within would be a helpful book for both genders, Anderson directs it primarily at women because they have the greater tendency to deny their true selves. That said, as a man, I found myself admitting that I also play roles and wear masks; many of the topics Anderson covers I found relevant to my personal experiences, and her advice was useful and practical for helping me to get unstuck in certain areas of my life.

While Anderson’s book is directed at women, she is no stranger to helping men as well. In fact, Anderson, who holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology, is a licensed marriage and family therapist, so she has helped plenty of men as well as women, but through her years counseling hundreds of couples and individuals, she recognized that it was women especially, despite being educated and having professional careers, who were often the ones most in need of accessing their true selves, the Genies within them, who are waiting to show their magic selves and grant their wishes once the women become aware of and prepared to be who they really are.

At the heart of this book is advice on self-care. Anderson helps women resist trying to people please and be Wonder Woman by giving themselves permission to say “No” so they no longer have to feel over-committed, overwhelmed, and overlooked. Instead of overextending oneself, Anderson shows how people can make affirming choices that allow them to reach a place of calmness, empowerment, and clarity in their lives.

Anderson uses several metaphors and scenarios to get across her point. She asks her readers to look closely at their self-limiting beliefs, such as “I am not good enough,” “I have to do things perfectly,” and “I can’t get angry,” and instead realize that we all have DNA—Divinely Natural Attributes—which are waiting to shine through when we give them priority. She advocates and provides steps for achieving balance and setting boundaries in life. As she states in the book:

“Real women need to set boundaries on their time, their ‘chores,’ their lives. If you let others control your time and resources, you open the floodgates to stress, anxiety, and frustration. Instead of being nice and accommodating, you’re really teaching other people that they have the power to determine how, when, and what you spend your time doing. The role of Superwoman is a clever way of wearing the mask of perfection.”

Setting boundaries is something most people struggle with. Anderson walks us through the different areas of our lives where we may need to reconsider our boundaries so we can “Give without Giving UP Yourself.” Examples of boundaries explored include: how to respect your time and set your time boundaries with others, how to set energy boundaries so you aren’t drained, and setting boundaries with money and with relationships.

By setting boundaries, we also come to realize what is most important in our lives and to prioritize around them. Anderson states:

“For the most part, women tend to prioritize according to the needs of others—not themselves. Putting your needs first is not a selfish act, but rather a selfless one. Remember the oxygen mask on the plane. You have to survive first before you can think of saving someone else.”

Anderson offers simple steps to help people get started in discovering and reclaiming their authentic selves, how to reframe their thoughts so they are positive and reflect a prosperity mindset, and she offers numerous inspirational examples from real-life including her own life. Each chapter also begins with some of the best inspirational quotes I have ever found in a self-help book, such as:

“Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got.” — Janis Joplin

“Everything is created from moment to moment, always new. Like fireworks, this universe is a celebration and you are the spectator contemplating the eternal Fourth of July of your absolute splendor.” — Lucille Francis

Whether you are a man or a woman, it’s time to celebrate who you are and to live your true life. Let Gladys Anderson teach you how to polish your lamp so your Genie appears and you begin living the magical, authentic life you deserve.

For more information about Gladys Anderson and Master the Genie Within, visit MastertheGenieWithin.com.

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