Thursday, May 3, 2012

The Essentials of Fabulous

I just finished reading The Essentials of Fabulous: Because Whatever Doesn’t Work Here Anymore by Ellen Lubin-Sherman and I loved it. Based on the premise that no one is born fabulous but you can learn how to become so by modeling what fabulous people do (and think and wear), Lubin-Sherman shares ten rules, plus a bonus rule, on ways to improve your confidence, eliminate negativity, make a great first impression on people, and assemble a team of top-notch personal advisers.

For me this paragraph in Chapter 3: “Fabulous people are revered for their amazing attitude,” got right to the heart of the book:

“Maybe it boils down to something as simple as this: Keep going. Never stop making lists—of things to do and the reasons that you’re the only one who can do them. Keep reminding yourself of your intrinsic goodness and spend zero (zero!) time obsessing about all the things you’re not. Get up in the morning determined to make the day fun and productive. And wear your most gorgeous clothes—save nothing! Looking good, thinking beautiful thoughts, and acting as if you were the most sensational creature on the planet is the most effective way to mastermind the narrative of your life.”

I am going to tape that to my refrigerator so I see it often.

From the back of the book.

Ellen was gracious enough to take time out from her schedule to answer three questions I had for her.

Some of my favorite parts of the book deal with eliminating negative self-talk and removing negative people from your life. But what if the negativity comes to you in the form of anonymous (and terrible) comments on your blog? Apart from changing settings, what does a fabulous person do—delete the comments, leave them and say nothing, or talk back to the commenter?

This is an excellent question as it impacts anyone who’s willing to stick their neck out and write about provocative subjects. For example, after I wrote a blog admitting that I used plastic bags instead of paper at the supermarket, I received many comments filled with vitriol about my selfishness. These readers asked to be removed not only from the blog but from my life.

My response: No response. I removed their emails from the subscriber base. I don’t think it’s especially flattering to get into a fight with a reader. I also do not post negative comments unless they are making a valid point. I’m not afraid to be challenged.

If you’re feeling the effects of negativity, from either inside or outside sources, what tricks do you like to use to shake them off?

I detox negativity by reminding myself of what I like about myself. It’s hurtful to be on the receiving end of someone’s disdain but unless I’ve earned it with poor behavior, I have the option of letting it go rather than hampering my outlook or my day. And if I have behaved poorly, I admit to it and apologize. If the person does not accept my apology, that person is done-zo. Bearing a grudge after someone has apologized is decidedly un-fabulous. 

I love the chapter on style, especially how fabulous people use accessories to give themselves flair and set themselves apart. Can you tell us about an accessory you own that makes you feel like a million bucks when you wear it?

I can wear a simple, one-pocket cotton shirt every single day as a building block for my accessories. Nothing else is as classic, simple, or timeless as a white shirt. I can wear it at night with a black pencil skirt, matte black stockings and a fabulous black patent heel or I can wear it on the weekend with a skinny jean, beat-up sneakers, gutsy belt and look like I’ve got the world on a string.

Great answers, don’t you think? Thank you, Ellen!

Ellen is the founder of LAUNCH, an executive coaching firm, and after even a few pages of her book I felt pumped up and ready to take on the world, so I plan on keeping a copy of The Essentials of Fabulous on my nightstand and flipping to any page at random when I need a pep talk. It’s that good. 

Ellen’s fabulous team gave me a copy of the book to offer to my readers in a giveaway, which will be my first. I am so excited to share this book with one of you! Please be a follower of my blog and leave me a comment letting me know you’d like to be included in the drawing. A winner be chosen on Wednesday, May 9. 

You can visit Ellen’s website at


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great book, and one I could really use right now as my teenage son is in the midst of being, well, a teenager. Hard to think fabulous thoughts under the present circumstances, but I'm trying!

I follow you via my blog aggregator; I hope that counts. Please enter me in the draw.

manon729 at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

Please put me in the drawing, but this book so very much appeals. I would love to know her positive thoughts on meeting and interacting with people in general. I was always rather shy, but living out in the rural boonies gives me little opportunity to practice.

I adore that piece of styling advice--always wear the best you have. Taking that further--always buy the best you can. That way you have to. :)

Anonymous said...

Fantastic book review! I strive for never losing a zeal for life and jotting dreams and ideas down is a great way to keep this in mind.

Serene McEntyre said...

Oh Please count me in! I'm already a follower! Hugs! ~Serene

Catfish (Jen) said...

I'm new to you from A Rich Life on a Budget (which I also love) and really enjoy your point of view on ALL things fabulous. I love this expression (a NEW positive take on a very old and negative saying)..."Fabulous is as fabulous does!". That keeps fabulous as a verb...I think THAT is fabulous!

Hang T. Tran said...

Hi Jill! Thank you for sharing your book with us. I will find it this weekend, hopefully they have it in Bangkok.
About my LV bag that you like, I got it from my mother-in-law and it's quite practical, kinda of carry all. I am not a fan of bags that carry lots of logos though. Hope you find your best LV bag soon.
Oh, and this weekend I will try to take photos of how I wear my scarf. I love to be a part of this interesting scarf game ;)
Thanks again for your comments on my blog.
Have a great weekend Jill

TuesdaySusan said...

I am one of your many Fabulous Followers!! This is a book that sounds fantastic....I can hardly wait to get my hands on it! Thanks for enlightening us with this wonderful book review!

Anonymous said...

Oh, I want to enter your giveaway! I've been a long-time follower. Now, what else do I need to do?

Uh, I guess I do have a sort of remote celebrity in my family. A great aunt who won some Miss Nudist USA contest at age 50 or so.

Anonymous said...

The book sounds fabulous and is definitely something I want to read. I was already thinking about ordering it in through our local library when I got to the part about your giveaway! Please count me in!

Denise said...

I would love this book! I would read it and pass it on to my 19 year old, who doesn't understand that she is fabulous!

triskelos said...

The book sounds really interswting) I'd love to read it too) Count me in)))

Veshoevius said...

This sounds like a great book! I'd love to read it so count me in for the drawing!

jill815 said...

Hi Ladies, you are all entered in the giveaway drawing and I am posting the winner's name in a post tomorrow! XO, Jill

Anonymous said...

I am reading your blog from France and would be pleased if I win the book. If not, do you have any idea how I could buy it ? doesn't sell it.

jill815 said...

Bonjour Anon from France! I've entered you in the drawing too, which I will do later in the day. The US Amazon site sells a Kindle version and the paperback version which I have. Maybe it's time for Ellen to think about going global! XO, Jill