Mother Teresa said, “To keep a lamp burning, we have to keep putting oil in it.” Most women are so busy filling the lamps of the people they love that they let their own lamps run low. They spend so much time and energy taking care of their children, husbands, aging parents, friends, neighbors, bosses, coworkers, and others that they often neglect themselves.
Awareness is the first step toward solving a problem. So the first section of Oil for Your Lamp is devoted to helping us acknowledge the problem and understand the reasons for it. The first section of the book looks at how girls are socialized, growing up to be women who put others first. Subsequently, it examine the values women have adopted in the past fifty years, beginning with the feminist movement—leading us to believe that we can have it all—all at once. And then explores the corresponding myth that we can DO it all.
But don’t be discouraged. Help is on the way—in the second section, we’ll get into solutions for the problem. We’ll learn the value of doing nothing, how to play again, how to become more inner-directed, and most important, how to ask for help.
It’s the new golden rule for women: “Do unto yourself as you would do to others.”