I don’t actively seek biographies, but sometimes I am loaned a book that is a “must read” from the lender. A friend of mine loaned me If You Have to Cry, Go Outside and Other Things Your Mother Never Told You by Kelly Cutrone, and I admit it was a must read for me.
Kelly Cutrone is the owner of People’s Revolution, a PR firm with locations in New York and Los Angeles. She is also the author of Normal Gets You Nowhere, produced Kell on Earth, and judged America’s Top Model.
The fashion/celebrity industry has never interested me, so I was a little leery of reading If You Have to Cry, but I liked the title, and my friend was convinced I would love it. She was right. I read this book in a couple of days and learned some interesting things about myself in the process.
What I learned from Kelly Cutrone:
1. It’s okay to make your own religion. With so many people trying to influence you and your beliefs, Cutrone urges readers to make their own religion. No matter what you believe or don’t, it’s okay to have an intimate relationship, completely catered to you, with your faith.
2. I have a style. I like dark fitted clothes, minimum makeup, bare nails, and I usually wear my hair up. I am this way for a lot of reasons, but mostly I would rather sleep in the morning than spend an hour-plus getting ready. I should own and be proud of my style instead of listening to people who try to change it.
3. I’m doing my best. Cutrone discusses entrepreneurship, goals, and taking risks in life. I am not afraid to try new things, try to always be honest (no matter the result), and stick up for myself. Many feel I am harsh and cold, and I’m okay with that. At the end of the day, I have to look at myself in the mirror, not them.
4. You are not entitled to anything. I hear people complain they should make X amount of money because of X. If you want X amount of money, then work your ass off to get it. It doesn’t matter what your degree is, how many people you know, or how hard you worked in the past. What matters is your earn it each day, and if you want more, you work more.
5. Support other women. This one is especially tough for me because I am surrounded by men who I love dearly. I find it harder to relate to women, but I hope over the years to build better relationships with some and create a better balance.
6. Be different and stand out. This is important in all aspects, and if you are truly yourself you can accomplish this with little effort. Each human is unique because we are all different.
7. Discover yourself and cater to your strengths. I love proofreading and editing, and I am good in customer service because I can read people. These are not my only skills, but these are the ones I like the most, so I focus on those as opposed to being driven by money.
8. Have fun. It’s almost impossible to love everything you do because sometimes things suck, but you can try to have a good attitude about everything you do. That makes a huge difference, and you would be amazed at how a good attitude can influence others and make you feel better.
It’s surprising that a randomly loaned 200-page book opened my eyes to things I never knew about myself. Sometimes we are so stressed and busy, we forget to reflect on what we want out of life and from ourselves. So, here’s the challenge: Think about what you want. Then go after it. Cutrone’s story is proof that with hard work, being true to yourself, and taking risks, anything is possible!