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Enough is Enough
by Jane Straus

What inspired you to write this book?

The encouragement to write Enough Is Enough! Stop Enduring and Start Living Your Extraordinary Life came from my coaching and seminar clients who had said for years, "Jane, this is such meaningful information. It's changed my life. Write it down!" But all their encouragement wasn't really enough for me to overcome my personal demon: my fear of rejection. It took a brain tumor diagnosis in January 2003 to serve as my wake-up call. I made a bargain with The Universe, "If I make it through the surgery still able to function, I promise to write the book. No more excuses!" In keeping this commitment, my life has become more extraordinary in ways I never could have imagined. Ironically (or not, since we often teach what we most need to learn), this is what the book itself is about: When we listen to our spirit instead of our fears, we get out of survival mode and begin to thrive in amazing ways we could never have predicted.

The beginning of each chapter contains an inspirational quote. How did you choose each quote?

Some quotes I chose; other quotes chose me. I went to web sites with famous quotes and typed in a topic such as boredom, fear, self-judgment, or power of thought. That's how I found this ancient Buddhist quote, "Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own thoughts." I read that and knew I could chew on that for a while. It became Chapter Two, Exit the Courtroom, Enter the Classroom. Sometimes, however, an unrelated quote would just catch my fancy. Some quotes inspired chapters I had no prior intention of writing. An example of one of these begins Chapter Three, Remove Your Blinders: See Without Limiting Beliefs. "The first thing you have to realize is that you are in prison. If you think you are free, you can't get out."--Gurdjieff That was profound and elegant to me. I just had to write everything I could think of about that.

How has the development of this book changed your life?

Writing, selling, and teaching from the book has changed my life from the bottom up. A self-help book is really like a big, heavy business card. It gives one credibility and opens a lot of doors. It is also like a baby in that it demands more time, energy, and money than one could ever imagine (or want to). An author has to commit to parenting a book until it can toddle, then walk, then thrive on its own. Like every parent, an author is better off not knowing ahead of time just how much work and how much worry will go into raising it. And just like with parenting, when you've done your job well, there are immense rewards. I get to "play" at a higher level because the media now perceives me as an expert. I get invited to appear on TV and radio and have choices about articles I want to write for national magazines. I even have my own call-in show, "Ask Jane." These were fantasies before writing Enough Is Enough! Now they are very fulfilling realities.

How did you choose the title of the book?

Truthfully, the title didn't come to me until the day before the manuscript was due at my publisher's. I said to my editor, "I can't think of a title. I'm sick of trying. Enough is enough!" She said, chuckling, "Listen to what you just said, Jane. I think that's it." She told me that the title is often the last thing to come to a writer. I rewrote the entire manuscript that night around my new "hook." I always wonder: What if the last thing I had said to her had been only, "I'm sick of trying." What would that book have been about?

What are your current projects?

I'm stretching, moving through every remaining rejection and "not good enough" fear, by completing my novel "Touched." When I was a girl, I remember saying I wanted to write the great American novel. I've avoided doing so long enough. So it's on its way. The screenplay for it is completed and currently being shown to Hollywood producers and agents. I've also just submitted a book proposal that is a very practical, hands-on companion for Enough Is Enough! This time the title came to me immediately, thank goodness. I'll let you know what it's called as soon as it's approved by my literary agent and publisher.

You also wrote a book called "The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation", how did you transition from writing about grammar to writing about self-improvement?

I consider The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation a self-help manual of sorts too. I always found grammar and punctuation easy to understand and just had a feeling that I could explain the rules easily to others. I wrote the original version of it 30 years ago to help government employees pass civil service exams. It became so popular that I began to publish it first by the dozen, then by the hundreds, then by the thousands. Even though I offer the entire contents of the book free on my site, www.grammarbook.com, it's still a perennial bestseller on Amazon.com and is used as a textbook in thousands of high schools and colleges worldwide. The nuances of English usage continue to intrigue me even as I dedicate myself to furthering peace through personal healing.

You offer one-on-one coaching, workshops, seminars, corporate counseling, nonprofit counseling, and keynote presentations. If someone wants to contact you, how would they do so?

People are always surprised to find out how easy I am to reach: Jane@janestraus.com; 415-458-1900. I would also like to invite your readers to Janestraus.com, where they will be able to read articles, view seminar clips, and see interviews. I'd like to leave everyone with what I hope is a valuable thought: It's never too late to stop enduring and begin your extraordinary life. You deserve it. You are worthy. Don't waste your precious time believing anything less. The sooner you believe, the more others will benefit from the unique gifts you have to offer. Maybe this bumper sticker quote from Chapter Ten, Breaking Free, says it most succinctly: Be the person your dog thinks you are.


We'll teach you how to #LiveTo100!

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