Speaker tells women to say “no

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    Women cannot change their lives with criticism but by acknowledging personal accomplishments, a guest speaker told the all-female audience Tuesday at the Kelly Alumni Center.”Acknowledgement is in short demand in our busy culture, and we need to learn to thank ourselves first,” Stephanie Marston, author and life quality expert, said.

    Women in today’s culture are so afraid that if they put their needs first, they will be branded selfish, Marston said.

    Marston’s presentation, sponsored by the TCU Women’s Resource Center and Harris Methodist hospitals, included lessons about life for women and the seven essential ingredients for a balanced life.

    “Women need to get their priorities straight,” Marston said. “We usually forget what matters, and we need to consider what is important to us and be selective on how we invest our time.

    Women need to set limits on their lives and learn to say “no”, Marston said. Saying no creates balance and time for the things that are really important.

    “It is only when we care for and love ourselves that we can truly care for and love others,” Marston said.

    Women cannot be shy about getting their needs, no matter how small, met, Marston said.

    “You may not always get what you ask for, but if you never ask, you will never know,” she said.

    Marston generally speaks to career women in order to help them balance the demands of work and family.

    However, her message also reached many of the TCU women in attendance.

    Ashley Engberg, a senior fashion merchandising major and the president of Delta Delta Delta sorority, said she was moved by Marston’s presentation.

    “Marston’s speech inspired me to start putting myself first now so that I don’t look back and realize I wasted half of my life because I couldn’t say ‘no,'” Engberg said.

    So much is expected of women in college, Engberg said, and the things Marston discussed certainly do not just affect older women.

    “You don’t have to be 45 to be asked of and pulled in every direction,” Engberg said.

    Marston has been seen on the Oprah Winfrey Show, The Early Show and CNN Headline News.