Just Who Will You Be?
Big Question, Little Book, Answer Within
by Maria Shriver
What will your legacy be is the question Maria Shriver asks in Just Who Will You Be?: Big Question, Little Book,
Answer Within. When Shriver was asked to speak to a graduating high school class, she found herself pondering the
very question she ended up extending to the graduates. That question, "why me," caused her to dig deep to find the
answer within. The book is an examination of who you think you want to be and who you really could become.
Examining how many of us flow through life to please others, Shriver found solace in learning that she, too,
needed to go within to discover who she would become in her later years. The answer within is found mostly in the
speech she gave to the graduates. The best part of the speech is the answer to the question of Just Who Will You
Be?, found in the eight minutes of poetry she recited, which became the title of the book. The poem itself could
be an affirmation to hang on your wall. She talks about how we must sometimes realize that our interests change over
time or that maybe we want to do something new and different. In doing so she brings out what we must always remember,
"We're entitled to our own lives, our own dreams and goals, our own legacies."
Shriver also wrote ten pledges to herself and left pages for you to write your own. One I was drawn to was the
second one: "I pledge to avoid using the word 'just' to describe myself." For example, I won't say, "I'm just a
mother," "I'm just a student," or "I'm just an ordinary person." Others were "I pledge to live my own legacy" and
"I pledge to use my voice to connect my dreams to my actions." These pledges can definitely motivate you to look
within and then write your own pledges to find the person you are to become.
This 112 page book is easy to read and full of insights into Shriver, who like others, faces the same trials in
life that we all do. You will be comforted when you realize that who we all become is in us all, we just have to dig
down inside and find it. I highly recommend the uplifting book Just Who Will You Be?: Big Question, Little Book,
Answer Within by Maria Shriver to everyone, especially the young and confused, as well as the older set.
April 15, 2008|
Young Adult Self-help|
More at Amazon.com|
NOTE: Reviewer Sylvia McClain
is the author of the forthcoming 2nd edition of The Write Life: A Beginnerís Guide to Writing,
Money Management, Publishing and Marketing, Skipping Through Life: The Reason I Am
and editor of the Scribal News Calendar, a newsletter of writer events and happenings.