Front Page News and No Girly Thoughts


Patricia O’Gorman, PhD


Have you ever been on the front page of your local newspaper? I don’t mean as a cute baby in the Easter Parade, or for having committed some terrible crime, or for being awarded a prestigious prize, but as an adult, and just because you were happy?

I was, and here’s the proof:

patricia o'gorman - maple syrup

Weird, huh?

A Dream Fulfilled

Well, that was me a week ago. It all began so innocently, while I was on a mission to fulfill one of my fantasies. Now, we all have dreams, but for me (and perhaps for you), that’s what many of them have stayed: dreams. But then . . .

A Sweet Experience

As I was chatting on the street during what passes for spring in the Adirondacks, a snow shower—yes, it snows with the sun peaking out periodically, and we all get giddy because, well, there’s some sun—I mentioned to a friend that I would love to be in a maple syrup tasting. For those of you who don’t know, I have a massive sweet tooth. And I love to cook. I have long thought that different maple syrups have different tastes, but I’ve never put in the energy to line up a couple and, well, sip.

That’s when my friend told me of a tasting at the Lake Placid Conference Center the next day.

Caught on Camera

I happily entered the great hall and made a beeline for the maple syrup tasting, smiling politely to the food vendors as I almost jogged to my goal. I was a woman on a mission.

Once there, I found eight different syrups, all portioned in one-teaspoon servings, all for the tasting, and we could even vote for the one we liked the best.

It was so exciting. I was surprised by the taste of almond in one, a deep caramel aftertaste in another, more bitterness in a third, and too much sweetness in a fourth. Since I had to cast my vote, I took this very seriously, savoring each encounter, all with a huge smile on my face.

Along came a reporter and began asking if he could take pictures of me and my fellow tasters. We all agreed.

But Wait—Am I Ready for This?

Suddenly, a girly thought popped into my mind. Yes, like you, I have internalized these corporate images of beauty into a swirly negative self-talk. I thought:

  • I’m not wearing any makeup.
  • I’m wearing my glasses.
  • I’m warm because I haven’t taken off my coat; is my face sweaty?
  • Oh, my hair! What does my hair look like?

Don’t Let Girly Thoughts Ruin a Good Moment

But I didn’t care. I was so happy, and probably at this point on a slight sugar high, that I just beamed, as you can see. Being so tuned in to how ridiculous and delightful this whole experience was allowed me to tell my girly thoughts to take a hike!

Let’s start a conversation. Share your story of how your joy allowed you to overcome your girly thoughts.

You’ll find more ideas for getting rid of your negative self-talk in my latest book, The Girly Thoughts 10-Day Detox Plan: The Resilient Woman’s Guide to Saying NO to Negative Self-Talk and YES to Personal Power