THE HEART OF A DIVA
"Attitude is everything!" I'm sure you've heard that saying many times. Attitude affects what we do and say, which affects how people respond to us and what we get back from life. A bad attitude usually gets bad results. People with good attitudes are usually happier, more successful, and better able to handle life's ups and downs.
"The secret to living the life you want is all about attitude," says Michelle McKinney Hammond in her book, The Diva Principle: Secrets to Divine Inspiration for Victorious Attitude. Hammond puts her readers on the road to success in every area of life, from romance to finance, by mastering the art of what she calls, "diva-tude."
Today, the word diva is associated with selfish vanity, but that's not its original meaning. Originally, a diva was an outstanding woman. She was the ultimate woman of confidence and style. Hammond draws examples from the lives of some very special divas and translates their stories into everyday principles for living.
I loved this book. It was recommended to me by a friend who has read it several times and is still soaking it in. And I do mean "soaking" as she has confessed to reading it in the bathtub, which explains the crinkled pages. Hammond might be the wisest woman on earth. She addresses every bad attitude a woman can possibly have and then explains why it's to her benefit to change her ways and develop a whole new attitude.
Here are some of my favorite lines from the book:
"A diva keeps her cool when everyone else is losing theirs."
"Divas set fashion trends, they don't follow them."
"Divas are not moved by the opinion of others."
"A diva doesn't let a fool bring out the fool in her."
Hammond has opened my eyes to what it means to be beautiful in God's eyes. Every woman has three views of herself--her own view, the opinions of others, and God's view. But the only valid opinion of ourselves comes from God. Others can see us only through their own experiences, and the way we view ourselves is limited by our emotions and past hurts. "When we are in relationship to God, we begin to see through his eyes," says Hammond.
Oh how I wish I could have read this book and applied it twenty years ago. My daughter will certainly have a copy. Hammond's insight is so profound, it could transform a woman's life. As I read it, I thought of things that I had done and said in the past and I realized how poorly I handled those situations. I realized that if I had applied the diva principle I could have had a better outcome and walked away with more dignity.
" A truly divine diva knows that life is not about her but rather the contribution she makes to others around her," says Hammond. She suggests that looking beyond ourselves is the first step toward healing and getting through any kind of pain. And when people hurt us, Hammond suggests that we ask God to give us insight into their actions that will help us to extend grace to them. I loved that. It reminded me that sometimes people do and say things for reasons that we can't see, reasons that have nothing to do with us.
The Diva Principle just might be the best book I've read in a long time. It's a handbook for developing a woman's inner beauty that is so valued in God's eyes. And that inner beauty brings such grace and goodness to the world, every woman should make an effort to develop the victorious attitude called diva-tude. As Hammond puts it, "No matter how lovely the external, if your spirit, heart and mind are not in divine order, you're just another pretty face."