if you have to cry, go outside. [a review]

by Joanna on September 20, 2012

I got Kelly Cutrone’s If You Have to Cry, Go Outside: And Other Things Your Mother Never Told You from a friend who’d read it and thought I would like it.

Honestly I was a bit skeptical going into it.  I didn’t know who Kelly Cutrone is and the cover didn’t really pull me in. I mean “if you have to cry go outside” isn’t really a mantra that resonates with me. (Clearly.  12345)

But this book was far from the coldness I felt in the title.  Frankly, it was warm and comforting.

Kelly (think I can call her that?) discusses finding yourself in your twenties and early thirties after the school path you were on ends and you’re left to design your own. She talks about many things that I’ve struggled with during my quarter-life crisis: career, babies, spirituality, relationships.

I was touched by her honesty, by her wisdom, and by how much her words resonated with me.  How much her message aligns so much with my own.

Some passages that resonated with me:

I happen to believe the world will change only when we change ourselves.  And that starts with finding ourselves.  And that starts with listening to ourselves: learning to quiest the clamor in our minds and the voices of everyone around us and move toward what feels right–toward the things we know, for reasons we can’t explain, that we’re meant to do, the things that make us feel alive.” p. 9

Study as many religions and teachings as possible; take what you like from each and leave the rest…Women should spend as much time looking for a religion of their own as they do trying to find a hot guy to have sex with. Because let’s be honest: there are too many examples of magic and miracles in this world to say with any certainty that there isn’t something fantastically wonderful going on here…if you don’t have faith in yourself and in something larger than yourself, and if you want to take this world at face value, you’re going to have a fucking nasty ride.” pp. 75-76

“We’re constantly moving from level to level, trying to collect the promised prizes, without stopping to think about the order we want these things to come in, or whether we even really want them at all.” p. 99

It doesn’t matter how glamorous or lucrative a career may seem fro the outside; if it’s not the path you’re meant to be on, you will never be happy or fulfilled doing it.” p. 136

I firmly believe that each woman is a goddess and that deep down inside herself she knows it.” p. 151

Aren’t these gems?  I’m sure there are many others that I loved but for whatever reason didn’t jot down as I was reading.

I really enjoyed this book and have already recommended it to a few friends. And now I recommend it to you.

Thank you, Kelly, for sharing this wisdom with us.

Question for you:

Do any of the passages above resonate with you?  If you’ve read the book, do you have others to add?


{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy September 20, 2012 at 10:05 am

I liked watching Kelly on “The Hills” and “The City”! I might have to read this book.


2 Joanna September 20, 2012 at 10:20 am

Oh, she was on The Hills? Totally didn’t put that together.

By the way, Emily, thank you so much for commenting so regularly! I love hearing from you!


3 Leigh Anne September 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm

The first quote is probably my favorite; finding – and even more importantly, accepting- who we are is always step one in any process involving change.


4 Katie September 20, 2012 at 8:54 pm

I watched The Hills religiously and bought Kelly’s book when it first came out! I love it and go back to read some pages when I’m having a crappy day. It’s a winner in my book!


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