In everything I’ve read this week celebrating the life and career of Nora Ephron, I like the way Jane Shilling of The Telegraph described her approach to life, writing that Ephron “thought wit was a more powerful weapon than spite.”
Ephron had the talent to blend her wit and comedic prowess to give us her hilarious perspective on what she witnessed in her life and the lives of those around her. Even in dealing with her most personal challenges, she was able to look at it in a light hearted I will live through this, and will laugh about it one day approach.
Who would think to title a book “I Feel Bad About My Neck.” She will be missed.
Her funny take on life will withstand the test of time through her movies and books. Her leading ladies were full of wit, strong opinions, quirkiness – which made them interesting and forever memorable. How I will also remember Ephron is from a few of my favorite quotes from her commencement address at Wellesley College in 1996. These are more inspiring than funny.
“Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim…”
For me, this speaks to being a strong independent woman, having the courage to fight for what I believe in and facing challenges head-on vs. blaming others for obstacles that get in the way.
Being the victim causes us to lose our perspective in the midst of complaining, blaming and avoiding actions needed to meet the challenge. The heroine, writes her own story - always wants more out of life and takes charge of getting what she wants. Whether it be; career, family, love, friendships – Ephron believed we women can have it all – and should go for it full force, without whining about why it can’t be.
Which brings me to my next favorite quote also from the commencement address,
“Whatever you choose, however many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady. I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there. And I also hope that you will choose to make some of that trouble on behalf of women.”
So here is my challenge to all women – write your own story. Start now, remind yourself of the great things that you’ve accomplished, relationships you have built, children you are growing, etc. Consider what’s going as planned, relish in the detours and decide to live it big going forward.
What’s next? Build the story that you want to be talking about in 6 months – 6 years – 60 years. One that you can look back on and laugh, feel proud that you took the steps you took – made the choices you made – paved the way for others – came out better, more fulfilled in the end. Be the Heroine of your Life.
Thank you Nora.