'A book for the Brave!" says Bear Grylls about Margie Warrell's latest book, which is focused on helping people get unstuck and on track in their work, relationships and lives.
After three bestselling titles, internationally renowned thought leader, Margie Warrell, returns with a different style of book. Still packed with her trademark practical wisdom, her latest release is formatted with plenty of space for readers to get to the heart of what is keeping them stuck, so they can quit making excuses and start making changes.
'We aren't wired to be happy; we're wired to be safe. Our innate desire to belong, look good and feel safe is in a constant tug of war with our desire for growth, contribution and self-expression. Only when we are committed to stand for a purpose greater than ourselves, will the bravest part of us rise up," Margie explains.
Drawing on the latest research in positive psychology, performance coaching and mindfulness, Make Your Mark is divided into seven practical steps that take people through a journey of self-reflection, self-discovery and setting -brave goals.'
Throughout the book Margie prompts readers with powerful questions like 'Are the results of your choices worth what you're (consciously or unconsciously) giving up?"
By inviting readers to reflect on powerful questions, Margie taps into what science has shown to be a powerful tool to process negative emotions, reframe problems and refine high order thinking in ways that 'simply reading never will."
'Let's face it, there's a big difference between knowing what you should do and actually doing it," Margie says. 'Unless people connect to a bigger -Why' and get real about the price they pay for doing more of the same, nothing will change."
Drawing on her diverse background, from growing up on a dairy farm to teaching leadership at NASA, interviewing Richard Branson, and climbing Kilimanjaro with her four teenage children, Margie exudes both the familiarity of an old friend and the pragmatism of the life coach you never knew you needed. It's why even people such as Kathy Calvin, President and CEO of the United Nations Foundation have said about Make Your Mark, 'Margie sets herself apart with her powerful message and ability to get to the heart of what holds people. Do yourself a favor and read her latest book."
Make Your Mark is a practical build-your-own-adventure guidebook. To quote Grammy singer, Estelle 'It's a roadmap for life. Read. Now."
Margie Warrell is a global authority on courage, resilience and human potential. A Forbes columnist, she has contributed to leading media outlets globally from CNN to The Today Show. Appointed as the first Ambassador for Women in Global Business, Margie is a passionate advocate for gender equality. She's also an Ambassador for Beyond Blue committed to removing the stigma of mental illness that's affected her family. For more information visit www.margiewarrell.com.
Make Your Mark
Author: Margie Warrell
Question: What inspired you to write Make Your Mark?
Margie Warrell: I regularly speak at corporate conferences around Australia and the world about making braver decisions and leading more purpose driven lives. Increasingly, people would come up to me afterward, nearly always women, and asked if I ran public workshops where they could dive a little deeper on my content. So while it was far more work and far less lucrative, I started running Live Brave workshops and retreats. I discovered that when people press pause on their busy lives and sit with the big questions, they discover within them the wisdom, clarity and courage they assume is - out there' waiting to be found in some expert or author.
Hence why I decided to write a -guidebook' - a step by step process to help people reset their compass on the biggest vision for their life and confront the fears and false beliefs that keep them stuck, settling and selling out on themselves.
Question: What will readers learn from Make Your Mark?
Margie Warrell: There's an old saying that goes 'Your best thinking got you here." So Make Your Mark helps them elevate how they are viewing their life from a higher vantage point. I take people through a step by step process to -upgrade their mental maps' that keep them making decisions based on fear and false assumptions about what they can and can't do. I also help guide them to get crystal clear about short, medium and long term goals and what they need to do to stay the course over the long haul. The reality is that life doesn't go to plan and it's how well we can -bounce back' and -fall forward' as we go through life that ultimately determines our ability to thrive.
Question: How did you use these principles to create a more rewarding life?
Margie Warrell: I apply them every single day because I've wrestled with self-doubt ever since growing up on my parents small dairy farm in rural Victoria.
There was no irony when just after the book came out my husband found that he needed to relocate to Singapore with his work. This was not part of our plans at all so I literally took out Make Your Mark, opened it to Step Five 'Lean into the Curves" and read it, three times. As i wrote in that chapter, our plans may follow a straight life but life never does. It's by leaning into its curves that we discover its gold. So that's what I'm doing right now. I also am really passionate about practicing daily rituals that help me bring my own best self to my biggest goals and challenges (step 7!).
Question: How does it feel to have Make Your Mark endorsed by Estelle, Bear Grylls and the President of the UN Foundation?
Margie Warrell: Affirming. Over the years I've written and spoken a lot about the 'imposter syndrome', where we wonder how long it takes until people realise we don't know as much as they think we do. I talk about it because I'm so acquainted with it! So when people like Bear Grylls, or Kathy Calvin from the UN Foundation put their name on my work with an endorsement it is an extraordinary affirmation of the value of what I have to share with people who are wrestling with their own doubts, fears and challenges each day.
Question: Why do you suggest we read Make Your Mark with a pen in hand?
Margie Warrell: Because writing down our thoughts helps to process our fears and other emotions that often sit beneath the surface, but which so often derail our decisions and drive self-sabotaging behaviour. In fact there's a lot of new research that shows how writing down our thoughts can help people tune into their intuition, build resilience, find confidence and get clarity about what they need to start and stop doing. Having kept a journal now for decades I can attest to the power it can have in helping us take the brave actions we know we need to take but which are often uncomfortable.
Writing down a vision and goals is also incredibly powerful in bringing them to life and helping us figure out what we most want (versus what we think we want based on what may impress others!)
Question: How are sexist parents impacting their children's direction?
Margie Warrell: No one is immune to unconscious bias. We often don't realise how much our environment conditions our thinking. As a mother of four kids, I most certainly don't mean to be sexist with my own children, projecting on to them gender stereotypes and unconscious gender bias. Yet we know that many well intentioned parents do just that. In fact research shows that parents are more likely to steer their sons toward traditional -male careers' like technology and engineering, and steer their daughters into traditional female careers like health and education. We even give our sons more screen time than our daughters! Of course it may not be explicit but our kids pick up on the little comments and over time we influence them in subtle ways. Little wonder so many girls are already steering away from STEM careers by middle school because they just have never been encouraged enough to see themselves working in these arenas.
Question: Why are studies showing girls are losing direction, certainty and self-belief from age 6?
Margie Warrell: Girls are naturally more cautious than boys. Over time they build up a tolerance for taking risks and for picking themselves up after a scrape that girls don't. So by nature we don't always engage in activities that ultimately build confidence. Girls also don't have the same level of roles models to look up to as boys. Men still, by and large, rule the world. Girls have to look harder to find women who are at the top of their game. Parents, media, movies and marketeers all slam girls with imagery and assumptions about what it means for a girl to succeed and be loveable. Girls assume they have to live up to some idealistic image and if they know they can't, they begin doubting their innate worth.
Question: How can we support girls?
Margie Warrell: Be careful not to impose your judgement about any careers being better or worse choices. Be positive about all of them equally, even if you don't think it's a match for your child, let them decide that for themselves on their own time and terms. Encourage girls to be ambitious and speak positively about ambition as it often has a negative association for girls (but positive for boys). Encourage girls to embrace discomfort and lean in, to put up their hand and ask questions or try out for a team they may not get into.
Normalise failing. This doesn't mean you want your kids to fail. Just the opposite, but don't help them avoid situations where they could fail or make failure mean something to avoided. Rather focus on the learning. Sit at the dinner table at night and share your own failures in a way that celebrates the learning and ask them what they failed at today.
Expose them role models or break gender conventions, for both boys and girls. Breaking down gender bias isn't just about making girls feel as confident as boys to become an engineer or software developer, but making boys feel as comfortable as girls to pursue nursing or kindergarten teaching.
Interview by Brooke Hunter